A large number of ADJ Hydro Beam X2 and 32 HEX Panel IP fixtures were used to create the outdoor lightshow to launch the international Mayflower 400 commemoration year. As part of the Illuminate festival of light in Plymouth – the port from which The Mayflower set sail on its legendary journey, the display filled the maritime city’s historic waterfront with vibrant colours and piercing beams that could be seen from miles around.
2020 marks the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower from Plymouth in the UK to what is now Plymouth, Massachusetts. Mayflower 400 is a year-long initiate that will champion the values of freedom, faith and personal liberty that informed that original journey. At the same time, the commemoration will recognise the impact of the Mayflower’s journey on Native American communities and address themes of colonialism and migration, providing an accurate, inclusive account of the Mayflower’s legacy.
Illuminate 2019 was a spectacular light-based festival that connected all of the Mayflower 400 destinations across the UK and internationally. A breath-taking series of events involving light-based art installations and projections took place at locations across the UK, Holland and the US in November of last year. The flagship event in Plymouth, England – which ran across four days from 28 November to 1 December – was organised by RIO (Real Ideas Organisation), who brought in local lighting specialists Essential Supplies to install and program lighting fixtures throughout the Royal William Yard on Plymouth’s waterfront.
“Illuminate light festival 2019 welcomed 50,000 visitors over four nights and marked the beginning of the Mayflower 400 commemoration year and programme of cultural events, which has a local, national and international reach,” explains RIO’s Claire Honey, project manager for the festival. “Essential Supplies worked with our creative team to produce a light-based ‘starter moment’ which launched the programme and was shared across the globe.”
The Essential Supplies team deployed 24 of ADJ’s Hydro Beam X2 IP65-rated moving head fixtures all around the historic Royal William Yard.
“The Hydro Beam X2 is a great fixture,” comments Essential Supplies’ Alex Darling, who served as the lighting programmer for the show. “The beam is nice and sharp, and the colours and Gobo patterns worked really well for creating mid-air effects. For a large fixture, it is also very nippy, and I found the DMX profiles easy to work with. As the X2 is a relatively new model for ADJ, I thought this was a great environment to test the fixture out.”
In addition to the moving heads, the Essential Supplies team also utilised 26 of ADJ’s 32 HEX Panel IP multi-function wash / blinder / strobe fixtures.
“The 32 HEX Panel IP is a great little unit that really enhanced the show,” enthuses Darling. “The brightness is phenomenal and they really did smash colour about the place very well.”
In total, 50 of ADJ’s IP65-rated fixtures were deployed for the event, positioned around Royal William Yard’s large horseshoe-shaped marina.
Providing a suitably grand start to a whole year of Mayflower 400 celebrations on both sides of the Atlantic, the Plymouth Illuminate 2019 lightshow was a resounding success. As RIO’s Claire Honey concludes: “The project included conceptual design through to the production, programming and delivery of an amazing light show on the harbour, which could be seen for miles! It was an absolute pleasure to work with Essential Supplies and ADJ who delivered a phenomenal show and we look forward to working with the team again in the future; thank you.”