Laser lights, fire­works and mu­sic

Piako Post - - OUT & ABOUT - LAWRENCE GULLERY

The com­pany which pro­vides the spec­tac­u­lar laser light show for the an­nual Sky Tower New Year’s Eve event is re­turn­ing to Mor­rinsville for the Diprose Miller Fire­works Ex­trav­a­ganza.

The Mor­rinsville show is one of only a few left in the Waikato re­gion fea­tur­ing fire­works and pos­si­bly the only one with a laser show as well.

This year, it would fea­ture a 30W laser sim­i­lar to ones used at ma­jor in­ter­na­tional mu­sic con­certs.

It’ll be op­er­ated by Ben Lawrence who heads Soul­storm Lasers, and for the sec­ond time they’ll work along­side Van Tiel Py­rotech­nics at the an­nual event.

Lawrence said he was ex­cited about re­turn­ing to be part of the event which will be held at the Mor­rinsville Recre­ation Grounds on Novem­ber 4.

He ex­plained how last year’s laser lights fea­tured as the in­tro­duc­tion to the py­rotech­nics dis­play.

It was co-or­di­nated with the fire­works through out the night.

A smoke ma­chine was set up and cor­doned off with the laser sit­ting at the back of the field.

The smoke ma­chine was turned on for about 10 min­utes to fill the area with an ‘‘at­mo­spheric haze’’.

‘‘Once the laser hits the smoke it re­flects light.

‘‘It cre­ates oily pat­terns and the ef­fect is known as a liq­uid sky,’’ Lawrence said.

‘‘From there we’re able to cre­ate dif­fer­ent colours and pat­terns, like aero­planes, tri­an­gles, squares, cir­cles, just above the heads of peo­ple.’’

This year the plan was to pro­vide a laser light show to mu­sic.

‘‘We’d like to do some­thing chore­ographed to mu­sic be­cause that’s where the lasers are most ef­fec­tive.

‘‘It pro­vides for more dra­matic mo­ments and you can move the lights faster over a larger area.’’

The laser show will open for the event and then work in with ❚ What: Fire­works Ex­trav­a­ganza ❚ Where: Mor­rinsville Recre­ation Grounds ❚ When: Satur­day, Novem­ber 4, gates open, 5.30pm ❚ En­try: $25 for fam­i­lies and $10 for adults ❚ Free park­ing, polo grounds ❚ The event will also be used as a fundraiser for David Street School the py­rotech­nics dis­play to build up to­wards a grand fi­nale for spec­ta­tors.

Lawrence said it was not dif­fi­cult to co-or­di­nate the lasers and the fire­works.

‘‘Van Tiel Py­rotech­nics, we’ve worked with them be­fore, for about four or five years, so we know each other well, our styles and what works.’’

Lawrence said Soul­storm Lasers had the big­gest lasers in New Zealand.

The lasers were built by Ger­man com­pany Arch­tos and their prod­ucts were of­ten used by big shows for per­form­ers such as Ri­hanna and Cold­play.

‘‘We saw a gap in the New Zealand mar­ket and de­cided to in­vest in the lasers.

‘‘We’ll be bring­ing one to Mor­rinsville, it’s a 30W laser which is very bright and not com­mon in this part of the world.

‘‘Even in­ter­na­tional acts don’t bring ones like this here be­cause of the ship­ping costs and I can say peo­ple would not have seen any­thing like it be­fore.’’

Lawrence said the laser pro­duces red, green and yel­low colours, just like a com­puter mon­i­tor.

The laser com­bines the three colours so the op­er­a­tor can make ‘‘all of the other colours in be­tween’’.

‘‘We con­trol it from a com­puter and have a lot of pre­set pat­terns that we know work and look good.

‘‘Nor­mally we take con­trol of the pat­terns so we can match the best ones to the fire­works dis­play.

‘‘When it’s with mu­sic, it is a pre­pared show, so the tim­ing is per­fect.’’

Hamil­ton and Waikato Tourism chief ex­ec­u­tive Ja­son Daw­son said the Mor­rinsville Fire­works Ex­trav­a­ganza is cur­rently one of the few fire­works dis­plays left in the re­gion.

‘‘... which is why it is sig­nif­i­cant for the Mata­mata-Pi­ako District and the wider sub-re­gion,’’ Daw­son said.

The tourism group was de­vel­op­ing a re­gional ma­jor events strat­egy over the com­ing 12 months to de­fine the types of events op­er­at­ing in the Waikato re­gion.

It had al­ready com­pleted a full re­gional events au­dit of what the Waikato had to of­fer, in­clud­ing arts, com­mu­nity, sport and com­mer­cial for ex­am­ple.

HARRY SI

Vis­i­tors en­joyed the Fire­works Ex­trav­a­ganza show in 2016. Sound­storm Lasers and Van Tiel Py­rotech­nics will re­turn for this year’s event in Mor­rinsville.

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