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Mother Earth goes Multimedia

In a former Delphinarium in Holiday Park LOBO is staging “AMACEON”, one of the most spectacular multimedia shows in Europe, which even sent the public at a specialist exhibition in Dubai into raptures.

03A06700 Lasershow Installations Parks Holiday Park AMACEON 2

The scientist Dr James Lovelock developed the thesis in the seventies that the earth could be seen as one great living organism. This inspired LOBO’s Creative Director, Alexander Hennig, to create a new show: “even if Lovelock’s theory sounds a little abstract and is hotly disputed by the experts, we all like to talk from time to time about ‘Mother Earth’. This was the perfect basis for us to create a really exciting show concept: who is this Mother Earth? What does she look like? What does she think about us?"

Since the middle of May the answers to these questions could be found under the name of “AMACEON” at the Holiday Park in Hassloch in the form of an opulently staged multimedia show. This leisure park in the Palatine region of Germany, which is known far and wide for its attractions with an especially high experience value, brought in the internationally renowned company LOBO for its new top attraction with investment figures up in the millions. LOBO is already responsible for staging the Open Air Summer Nights Laser Spectacle at the Holiday Park which is presented annually for an eight-week period. Within just six months LOBO created a universally applicable multimedia theatre which, as well as the AMACEON show, could easily be used in the future with minimum effort to stage other programmes in an alternating operation.

To be able to whisk visitors to the park away for about 15 minutes into a dream world far from reality requires enormous technical efforts behind the scenes:

Four high-power video projectors with a total of 29,500 lumens along with 4 laser systems producing 13 watts and partly moveable projectors create laser and video projections which are like holograms in front of a high-resolution, 24 m wide video panorama projection on a water screen with fast switching.

And that is by no means the end of it: to make the experience perfect the new attraction offers water fountain effects, cloud effects, underwater fire effects, 8-channel surround sound and a complete Armada of moveable and conventional lights. Water sprinklers over the spectators and cloud equipment with wind generators provide the last touch of perfection to the dream machinery. The multimedia orchestra is controlled by LOBO’s real-time multimedia workstation LACON-5 which guarantees the simplest system operation imaginable as well as quick programme changes.

Spectators witness the Big Bang, the creation of life and the origins of the human race. One minute Mother Earth is sending down lightning and fire or spraying the spectators with powerful fountains; the next minute she is playfully attending to the origins of life and her favourite creation, humans. Director Hennig doesn’t bother here with plain storytelling or educational content but creates picture sequences like film clips, sometimes abstractly arranged, with a symbolic expressiveness. Hennig: “you can experience the show on various levels. While some will try to understand the content of the show, others will simply enjoy the visual opulence of the performance. And with each visit you notice new details and other facets of the show. In any case, we have made sure that the show appeals to young and old alike because in AMACEON we wanted to create a real family attraction.”

With the rebuilding work and technical installation, which was done during the winter break at the Holiday Park, LOBO’s design team took on one of the most demanding show productions in the history of the firm. Hennig: “what my team has accomplished in just 5 months working under enormous time pressure is really amazing. It needed the work of over 60 assistants to be synchronised to have a version of the show ready to run for the start of the season at the end of March and the final version completed in the middle of May. During this time the storyboard and production plan had to be created, followed by the complete video production including auditions, time-consuming blue-box filming, countless computer animations at feature film standards and the extremely complex arrangement of all the video elements. Not forgetting the production of all the laser content including spatial ray effects, 3D laser animations and complicated cartoon passages which were created partly from many hundreds of individual pictures. At the same time my musical director Roman Schütz was coordinating the soundtrack composition, the recording of the musicians, the sound design and the surround mix in a studio in Hamburg.”

Most of the show elements were created in the LOBO studios, which meant that valuable production time could be saved. But there were many other challenges outside of LOBO which had to be dealt with. For example, an underwater blue-box scene or the time-consuming blue-box filming of the sportsmen and women who were needed for the scenes which concerned the humans. Hennig: “we were happy that we were able to get, among others, the trampoline champion Adam Götz and the winner of several youth and European championships for multi-discipline events Alexander Otto. However, at first we had underestimated the problem that, for this filming, we needed not only a lot of space for the floor athletes’ run-ups but also a height of nine metres for the trampoline athletes. After a long time searching we found a location where we had to build a whole blue-box set for two days’ filming.”

Compared with the show production at LOBO, fitting it all together at the location was accomplished quickly in a few nights’ work thanks to the well-polished control concept. Directly after the final inspection of the show by Park manager Wolfgang Schneider, the director Hennig flew straight off to Dubai where, with a slimmed down version of AMACEON, LOBO managed to amaze the hard-headed experts at the PALME exhibition.

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