wysiwyg Creates a Perfect Union of Tradition, Culture, Art and Technology
For a quarter of a century, in Sa Pobla, Mallorca, Spain the town celebrates the Festival of Sant Antoni each year with a show like no other. Epic music, dazzling fireworks, multicolored electrifying lights, traditional songs, and speeches are combined, telling the story of the breathtaking fight of the Saint who protects the town and its citizens from the Demon.
It all began in 1998 when Arnau Rayó had the genius idea of taking the historical festivities a step forward with the interpretation of “bringing hell to the town” by setting the Town Hall “on fire” with the fireworks. That was the very first pyro-musical show ever made on the island of Mallorca.
Tomàs Ramis is the person to help Arnau transform his idea into reality each year. Tomàs is the fireworks and music designer. It is not just an ordinary show with a piece of music linked to the other. It has meaning and a profound message. Tomàs meticulously compounds the music with traditional chants and cultural speeches that are symbolic of the festival to achieve this result.
The same mindfulness is given to the fireworks. To narrate the story, the colors for each part of the show have been selected intentionally and the intensities. For example, for the first part, red is the main color, suggesting the terror of the Demon and the fire of hell. But for the last part, with the triumphant melodies for the victory of the Saint, blue and white are the predominant colors. “Pirotècnia Jordà” is the company that supplies and sets up all the fireworks.
Due to its uniqueness, the show has become very popular throughout the island. Everyone wants to be at this event. The town square fills up and, in addition, the autonomic TV station features the show live during prime-time hours, broadcasting to all homes. The next day, it is all over the news and on the front page of newspapers! The festival has been declared with the titles of “Festival of Touristic Interest” and “Festival of Cultural Interest”.
There has been a creative and technological evolvement through the years. In the early years of the show, the lighting effects were minimal. A full-color wash on the facade with a few Par 64s and some ACLs batteries, creating beams, was manually synchronized with the fireworks’ colors. Later, with the development of LED fixtures and moving heads, lighting became more relevant to the show, but it would still be just a secondary complement to the show.
In 2016, Pedro Marcé Socias, in his second year of Lighting Design and Technology, had always dreamed of taking part in this amazing show, which he’d celebrated in his hometown each year. With the help of wysiwyg, Pedro delivered his client a project showing how the show could be improved substantially by giving a more significant role to the lighting.
Successfully presenting the innovative additions to the show, Pedro delivers every year, a fully synchronized lighting show with top-of-the-line lighting fixtures and controls, all pre-programmed using wysiwyg. Having such a realistic approach, using wysiwyg to see what the show will look like in reality, keeps the production budget in line. There is no need to rent the equipment for any extra days to program the show on-site, it is all done beforehand.
“Soundwave and Lights” is the production company that rents and sets all the equipment, sound, and lighting. Guillem Ximelis is the sound engineer of the event and owner of the company, along with Ana Belén. They have been involved with the event for years.
They supplied a large variety of fixtures for this show, from Robe Robin Pointes and MegaPointes to Clay Paky Mythos, B-Eye K10s, and Scenius Spots, among others. And of course, the workhorse force of MA Lighting Grand MA2s and Grand MA3s.
It is important to work with a top-level production company in these types of events. Everything needs to be carefully installed by dependable professionals and to be in excellent condition, anything could go unpleasantly wrong in front of a large crowd if not!
Sadly, it has been impossible to celebrate the festival in the town square these last two years due to the pandemic. This is the reason Pedro has chosen wysiwyg to deliver a virtual show for each of these past two years.
With the latest releases of the software, features like Chroma Keying, and higher frame rate improvements, it has been possible to achieve incredibly realistic looks, making viewers imagine and feel as if they are enjoying the show in person.
Hopefully, this creation, this production which encompasses tradition and culture with technology and art will be back next year at the real Town Hall, where it belongs. Traditions are inventions, and in Sa Pobla, they invented something great with this.
*Special thanks goes out to Pedro Marcé Socias for his contribution in this piece. For more of his work, you can check out his Vimeo HERE.
More About CAST Group of Companies Inc.
Established in 1994, Toronto Canadian-based software and hardware developer, CAST Software is a member of the CAST Group of Companies Inc. CAST Software serves its core markets in entertainment production, special events and meetings.
CAST’s award-winning flagship software products are wysiwyg – lighting design and previsualization suite, and Vivien – Event Designer and the new real-time tracking technology, BlackTrax.
All products designed and created in-house with support from an established global distribution and re-seller network.