History – Sound and light show on Parliament Hill
Northern Lights 2020 is presented virtually but sound and light shows have captivated audiences on Parliament Hill in Ottawa for more than 30 years. A bit of history:
- The first sound and light show was presented on Parliament Hill.
- 1994 – Reflections of Canada: A Symphony of Sound and Light
- In May 1994, Reflections of Canada: A Symphony of Sound and Light was launched, featuring a musical score performed by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.
- 2000 – Wind Odyssey
- In this show, launched in 2000, the four winds acted as storytellers and the voices of everyday Canadians, from coast to coast to coast, described their pride in their country as they reflected on the past and looked to the future.
- 2005 – Canada: The Spirit of a Country
- Canada: The Spirit of a Country was launched in 2005. This award-winning production used lighting effects, giant image projection and a tapestry of original music, narration and sound to present the story of Canada through the theme of communication.
- 2010 – Mosaika: Canada through the eyes of its people
- Mosaika: Canada through the eyes of its people debuted in 2010. It took a big leap forward with the technology used for the sound and light shows on Parliament Hill. For the first time, state-of-the-art technology was used to envelop Centre Block and the Peace Tower in high-definition video. This new digital technology brought the opportunity to update the content more easily, and Mosaika saw regular content updates to reflect Canadian milestones. This award-winning production was seen by over a million spectators.
- 2015 – Northern Lights
- Northern Lights was launched in 2015. A projection trailer is placed in the central aisle of Parliament Hill and is covered with LED screens on three sides. This "CUBE" of video screens counts down to show time and hosts interactive games before the show. During Northern Lights, the LED screens help tell the story, and a colour laser housed in the CUBE, beams out onto Parliament. This is the first time in a sound and light show that a colour laser device is used to punctuate transitions and add depth, making this a truly multimedia show. Digital technology also allows content updates to highlight important milestones or anniversaries in the current year.
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