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Archived - Mosaika: Canada Through the Eyes of its People
July 7, 2014 – Gatineau, Quebec – Department of Canadian Heritage
From July to September, when the sun sets, one of Canada’s most iconic sites takes on a whole new look.
Canadian Heritage, in collaboration with exclusive sponsor Manulife, is pleased to present the summer season of Mosaika: Canada Through the Eyes of its People. This 30-minute experience is a free bilingual show that tells the story of Canada through music, lighting effects, and imagery projected onto the Centre Block of the Parliament Buildings.
The sound and light show on Parliament Hill is a must-see attraction in Canada’s Capital Region and a perfect activity for a summer evening.
Mosaika tells the story of Canada—our story—with a powerful narrative set against the spectacular backdrop of the Parliament Buildings. Mosaika takes audiences on an unforgettable journey of sound and light as they explore Canada’s physical, historical, and cultural landscapes.
This original production is a celebration of Canada, its land, people, achievements and values presented in three acts:
- Act 1 – Exploring the theme of Land
- Act 2 – Exploring the theme of Achievements
- Act 3 – Exploring the theme of Values
Mosaika is the 5th edition of the sound and light show on Parliament Hill since 1984 and has run for five consecutive summers (2010 to 2014).
Mosaika is a one-of-a-kind show in a national landmark setting. State-of-the-art technology wraps Parliament Hill’s Centre Block in high-definition video, transforming it into a screen more than 143 metres (470 feet) long and six storeys high.
Projection – Stunning images are produced using a video array of nine projectors working in harmony. For the very first time, Centre Block’s front façade is covered by projection. This allows for animated moving images to travel seamlessly from one side of the building to the other, as well as along the entire height of the building, including most of the Peace Tower. Nearly 2 kilometres (6000 feet) of fibre optic cables deploy video and ethernet content.
Lighting – Over 200 moving and static lighting fixtures immerse Centre Block. There are 38 automated lights, each of which can produce more than 16.5 million colors; 36 low-energy LED lights are also used on the site. Remotely controllable, they also make it possible to have more than 16.5 million colours available per fixture to complement the colour palette used in the show. Two computers and more than 15 kilometres (49,213 feet) of wiring help power up and control the lighting system. High-impact lighting and environmentally-friendly smoke effects enhance the experience.
Audio – A custom-designed audio system brings Mosaika’s original score, narration, and sound effects to life in this unique outdoor environment. The rich soundtrack is mixed using a 5.1 surround sound system, with six loudspeaker positions on the site, for a total of eight speakers. This envelops the audience with acoustics of more than 30,000 watts.
Programming – Precise video programming of the new sound and light show is done using software designed specifically for large-scale multimedia displays and used extensively in venues such as museums, theme parks, and shopping malls. Mosaika runs off of a control system that uses 10 media server computers and 3 production computers. A total of 52 gigabytes of computer power, plus even more gigabytes of content, help produce moving images of over 16.5 million pixels. High-definition television has an image of a little over 2 million pixels.
Mosaika has garnered 13 national and international awards, including:
- Canadian e-Tourism Award for Best Innovative Use of Technology / Media (2010)
- Boomerang Award for Best Interactive Technology (2010)
- Ontario Tourism Award for Tourism Innovator of the Year (2011)
- Ottawa Tourism Award for Innovation of the Year (2011)
- Two Festivals and Events Ontario (FEO) Awards for Best Promotional Campaign and Best Poster (2011)
- Four IFEA / Haas & Wilkerson Pinnacle Awards, including a Gold Award for Best Promotional Poster, a Silver Award for Best Event Photograph, and two Bronze Awards for Best Event Video and Best Event Website (2011)
- National Association for Interpretation 1st Place Media Award, Long Video Category (2011)
- Interpretation Canada Award of Excellence, Gold (1st prize), non-personalized interpretation category (2012)
- Bronze IFEA / Haas & Wilkerson Pinnacle Award for Best Promotional Brochure (2012)
Mosaika has twice been named one of the top 100 festivals and events in the province of Ontario by Festivals & Events Ontario (2012 and 2013).
Sound and light shows on Parliament Hill have been captivating audiences for 30 years. A bit of history:
- 1984 – First sound and light show on Parliament Hill
- 1994 – Reflections of Canada: A Symphony of Sound and Light
In May 1994, the show Reflections of Canada: A Symphony of Sound and Light was launched. It was produced by Vancouver-based Stellar Productions Services and featured a musical score by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.
- 2000 – Wind Odyssey
In 2000, Productions Normand Latourelle (PNL) won a Canada-wide competition to create an updated version of the sound and light show for Parliament Hill. In this version, 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
In 2005, AVH Live Communications created Canada: The Spirit of a Country. 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. This very successful production drew record-breaking numbers and was seen by over 1.2 million spectators.
- 2010 – Mosaika: Canada through the eyes of its people
The current show, Mosaika, debuted in July 2010 and has run for five consecutive summers. This iteration 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 is used to wrap Centre Block and the Peace Tower in high-definition video. This new digital technology brings with it the opportunity to update the content more regularly and Mosaika now boasts 25 percent new content added since the original launch, as well as enhanced audio and pacing.
- 95 percent were very or extremely satisfied with the show.
- 90 percent would watch the show again.
- 99 percent would recommend it to others.
- 92 percent said that it helped them appreciate the beauty of Parliament Hill, the Capital, and Canada.
Visitors who have experienced the show are extremely positive about it, according to a 2012 Harris Decima survey.
Mosaika will be presented free of charge every night in Canada’s Capital from July 8 until September 6, 2014.
- July 8 to August 16, 10 p.m.
- August 17 to 31, 9:30 p.m.
- September 1 to 6, 9 p.m.
It is recommended that spectators bring a chair or blanket to enjoy the view from the lawn.
For more information (media only), please contact:
Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages
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