LSE Creates a Spectacle at the Mardan Palace Hotel

Posted on Friday, June 5th, 2009

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The end of May saw the spectacular opening ceremony of the five star Mardan Palace hotel take place in Antalya, Turkey drawing an illustrious international presence of celebrities and press. LSE, the Belgian based multi-media show company, worked with long-time collaborator Tara W Smith, the Australian Creative Director of Stargrace Ltd, to create an unforgettable visual experience for the opening.

The event, which took place over two days, was a high profile affair featuring presenters and performers including Sharon Stone, Richard Gere, Paris Hilton, Monica Belluci, Tom Jones and Seal.

Two multi-media shows took place over the two days, the first at the Grand Inauguration on 23 May, the second the following day at the ‘Dance of the Scorpion’ Beach Party on the hotel’s Scorpion Pier.

For the Grand Inauguration, Smith wanted to celebrate the historical influences, modern technology and imagination which go into creating a hotel such as the Mardan Palace.

“I wanted to bring to the hotel launch a bit of soul, to breath life into the design processes and influences which bring the actual construction into being,” explains Smith.

The show also celebrated the idea of East meets West as represented in the architecture of the hotel itself. “One wing represented Anatolya which we depicted with giant video projection and aerial belly dancers, emphasising the passion of the orient with choreographed flames,” explains Smith.

“The second wing represented Europe which we visualized with a daring silk aerial act, high above the audience’s heads, and infused with a fountain ballet; the two were then linked by the middle section with a laser representation of the famous Bosphorus Bridge, representing Turkey.

Each section of the hotel was individually highlighted and ‘brought to life’ during the performance before reaching an explosive crescendo at the finale.

Wound into these themes was that of the imaginative process which a designer experiences during the art of creation. A kind of dream space was recreated using transparent floating balls on the central water feature and aerial performers lowered from the tops of the buildings to ‘paint’ the design of the hotel across its surface.

The evening’s events centred around the inner pool courtyard and used multi-media effects to illustrate these historical, technological and imaginative references. The building façade, roof tops, lighthouse tower, the pool itself and even the beach beyond, acted as projection surfaces, resulting in over 200m of video projection.  More than 700 pyrotechnic firing points on the facade and in excess of 30 lasers, choreographed flames and fountains were also used, augmenting the performances of the aerial performers.

In all a total of 30 trailers and 150 crew were required to bring this spectacle to fruition.

“The evening was very well received,” states Smith. “We even had ladies in the audience crying with emotion over the Imagination scene, so we knew we were reaching our audience!”

LSE’s team for the Mardan Palace Spectacular was headed by Managing Director, Patrick Awouters and included Technical Director, Erik Lybeer,Lighting Director, Theo Cox and Project Coordinator Marc Agboton.

“I have worked with LSE for 9 years and really love doing these projects with them,” continues Smith. “Patrick has always put a lot of trust and faith in my work and believes whole heartedly in the team he has created. We all come together as a united force and the results we achieve are testiment to that teamwork.”

Previous collaborations between Tara W Smith and LSE have included the SEA Games in Vietnam, Moscow Sport Games and St Petersburg 300 years by Hiro Yamagata. Several more collaborative projects – on both a grand scale and for luxurious private functions – are scheduled for later this year.