Sir Algenon unveils his revolutionary Sonic Visualiser, a machine capable of turning sound visible...
With lights, lasers, fireworks, live performers, dancers and a finale soundtrack featuring a specially composed track performed by the Budapest Film Orchestra, Alton Towers' 2015 end of season fireworks display is likely to go down as a classic.
The story centered around world renowned inventor and explorer Sir Algenon and his life's work: a machine capable of turning sound visible. Sir Algenon's reputation hangs on the success of the evening's unveiling of his Sonic Visualiser. However, only perfect music will make the machine function - the wrong input, and it shuts down.
Sir Algenon was played by a live actor who led the audience through the show, testing the Sonic Visualiser through various musical phases. These began with orchestral, moving through rock and roll, dance and then pop. At this point Sir Algenon became over-confident and started to disregard his strict musical formula, resulting in the Sonic Visualiser shutting down when fed with Justin Bieber's Baby and the computer announcing "Audio quality compromised: Bieber overload" much to the delight of the audience!
Regretting his mistake in disregarding the formula, Sir Algenon realised his life's work was ruined with only the finale to go. But wait ... the Sonic Visualiser could read music. While he did not have any music with him, Sir Algenon was able to write it using Alton Towers as inspiration and create a spectacular finale right there and then. Cue the traditional In the Hall of the Mountain King finale, but with a difference...
IMAScore was commissioned by Alton Towers to compose the finale soundtrack, which was based on In the Hall of the Mountain King but introduced some of the theme park's most recognisable ride music, including Hex, into the mix. A performance of the new musical score was recorded by the 56-piece Budapest Film Orchestra, which did a superb job and provided an incredible, immersive and moving finale to the fireworks display.
Conducted by Sir Alegon, dancers dressed in light-up costumes "played" oversized musical instruments at various points in the show.
The fireworks themselves were designed and fired by Jubilee Fireworks, who have worked on Alton Towers' end of season firework displays since 2010.
Sir Algeon's Sonic Visualiser was actually an old Enterprise wheel rigged with lights and lasers. Rumours had it that originally the show designers wanted it to raise and lower, but by the time the show was performed it was held statically at a 45° angle. Whatever the truth of that, it provided a sufficent if slightly odd centrepiece.
The various elements came together wonderfully to form a truly spectacular Fireworks show. With their 2015 Ultimate Fireworks Spectacular, Alton Towers (and Sir Algenon) were on top of their game.