UK theme parks from another point of view!

 
PeteB
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:10 pm

Well from what I'm led to believe, the firework shows are now run by the marketing department, whereas before it was run by the Entertainments Team and Tussauds Studios which could explain the lack of ideas these days.

As for misfires, it happens. It's just the way it goes. Hardly any displays go 100% perfect, there's always 1 or 2 effects which don't fire correctly or not at all.  Shells can get lodged in mortar tubes, which means they explode at ground level and in some cases can even take out a whole rack of shells. It's rare but it does happen.

There are lots of rules and regulations which must be adhered to for professional firework displays and some of the most important ones are that of safety distance from the audience, wind direction & strength, and also not allowing people into the fallout zone until it has been checked and cleared.

Thing is as well, unless an effect does cause a fire (like at Alton yesterday) 99.9% of the audience won't be aware of any problems or misfires. I don't think what happened at Alton was a significant incident by any means.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:12 pm

PeteB wrote:
Somewhere around halfway during a gap in the music there was an almighty bang and flash behind the towers, but no effect in the sky? My first thought was that this was an aerial shell blowing out a rack and it seems I might have been right.


If it's the same bang I am thinking off I too thought it was a out of sync "explosion" on Friday, but having seen all three displays this weekend it was definately part of the display and seemed to come from around the bridge area. Sunday's "bang" was the loudest yet!

I will post my thoughts a little later when I have more time!
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:13 pm

I don't have a vast understanding of pyros, however, I am a bit of a geek and like to know a little about a lot...

From what I understand falling shells and shells exploding in the racks are accidents, falling before exploding can be due to a damp shell, not launching high enough , thus falling to the ground before exploding.

Exploding in the rack can be either a dodgy shell, or just pure bad luck....

The way I see it, Alton should put some effort into designing a whole show and not just having fireworks, bring back lake projections, multiple lasers, gas cannons etc..., none of these create noise, but make for a fantastic display!!!!
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:37 pm

Kenzie2012 wrote:
I saw them last night, typical Alton style left me thinking...... Where's the rest?!?!

The music was awful, the speakers sounded as if they were straining for power. The music kept lowering for a few seconds and going back to normal but this was every few seconds on and off.
I was expecting some massive fireworks to go off but there was only a few really and even they weren't that impressive. It seemed as if some weren't set up right as quite a few towards the end of the show were coming back down before hey exploded.
As much as I thought the fireworks were a bit lam, the timing to music was brilliant and the lights were Awsome. The House itself looked brilliant all the way through the show and the lazers added to it too.... I loved the finale most!!!

My big annoyance was the story???

The lack of should I say, where was the tie in to SW7 or the WOW factor?


I have to laugh at the audio comment, it was really bad at the start and went bad again when the Alton Towers theme music came on, I was also disappointed that sw7 wasn't part if the display. but apart from that I thought it was awesome!
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:52 pm

CA2000 wrote:
Vkumar3908 wrote:
One of the employees told us that there were 19,000 people in the park on saturday and on sunday, there were only 9,000


(Although this isn't what you're probably saying)
In my opinion, the numbers have nothing to do with the displays. Alton Towers makes more than enough money to splash out on an awesome display...

Dont get me wrong here, the fireworks in terms of amount that went off, were great. But what I am saying ( and im sure many will agree), that its just not as special as it was back in the day. The fact they are over in about 18 minutes plus music is a shame.

As the post mentions at the top, fireworks in the 90's and 2000's, of which i was there at every single event, just absolutely tore up the sky. The speakers were about 40 foot tall.

They also put a proper theme to the displays.

Pretend its 2002 now..... AT would have done a " what is SW7 "  theme I bet you !

Or even a Sub Terra theme..... with a story line projected onto spray from the lake  !


I personally think its all down to a court order of some sort lingering over the park with regards to the local family that were moaning about "oooh it sounds like world war three ".

Ever since the fireworks have came back, they just haven't put as much effort into the whole evening in general.

Thats how I feel anyway. By the looks of it others feel the same too.... by all means please feel free to disagree, but being as I've been going to Alton Towers since Thunder Looper was still running. So I believe I have a good idea of comparison to the fireworks then, as opposed to them now !


I've been going there since they first started in the 90's.
And No i wasn't saying that the amount of people made a difference cause it obviously dosen't. I was just pointing out how quiet it was on sunday :D

I do agree with you, the fireworks haven't been as good as before since they have no entrancing stories or themes like before, its just music now like every other theme park has with their fireworks. I think the 2010 fireworks were in particularly great though. I LOVED the fireworks this year and in my point of view were better than last years. it just dosent have that alton towers magic touch that it needs and had before.
Last edited by Vkumar3908 on Mon Nov 05, 2012 6:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 7:06 pm

For me it was a fantastic firework display, everyone seemed to love it as it sycrinised nicely with the music. I'm sure Simon Cowell directed the music though lol (sarcasm ) the only thing that let it down was the announcement at the end it would have been better having it before the finally. I would have gone for a more classical choice of music but can't complain, no one will see a better display than that this year.
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CA2000
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 7:15 pm

andyuk200523 wrote:
I don't have a vast understanding of pyros, however, I am a bit of a geek and like to know a little about a lot...

From what I understand falling shells and shells exploding in the racks are accidents, falling before exploding can be due to a damp shell, not launching high enough , thus falling to the ground before exploding.

Exploding in the rack can be either a dodgy shell, or just pure bad luck....

The way I see it, Alton should put some effort into designing a whole show and not just having fireworks, bring back lake projections, multiple lasers, gas cannons etc..., none of these create noise, but make for a fantastic display!!!!


Well said..... I share the same sentiment. It doesnt create noise, So whyon earth has pre show entertainment, lake projection etc., as you rightly say, stopped ?

I think Pete's Nailed it to be honest..... Tassaud's Entertainment team and studios etc., were probably on the case.
Now its probably some dude picking his nose, who works in the house next to the oblivion car station on the ground. 

I think it goes something like this.

" Kev, we got fireworks to organise !  :shock: Its in two weeks, don't forget music, and phone the company that does them ! "

Nom Nom Nom..... Kev scrambles of chair, " Urgh, sh*t yeah.....  :?  mmmmm, KK ... Errr, www.ichoons....... no, Itunes.com ".

Search, 8) " Drum and Ba...... Nooo, erm Pop Mega-mix..... dooo be dooo...... Katy Perry, Ne-yo, blaa blaa ( Bites into a crunchy ham salad sandwich ) yeh that'll do  "  Mwah ha ha ha ha.

Brrp Brrp.. Brrp Brrp  :|...  "Hello Is that Julie ? ...... I mean Jubilee ?  Yeh, we need some fireworks enit..... For Alton Castle....... Towers i mean !

....When for you say ?.... erm November.... errrr  2, three, and FORth ? ..... 

What do i need ? .... I dunno, just some big ones to go with sum uber cool chart music and lazery things  :lol:.....

.... 15 grand you say  :shock:..... KK, wow.... suppose its a saving compared to last year man safe  ! , Just make sure they explode with da music though and make it real sparkle... but its gotta be below 100db or my grandma will kick my f***in ass  :( ! ......

Whats that you say ? ..... what speakers do we have ? " ......................................The other person, has cleared !   
Last edited by CA2000 on Mon Nov 05, 2012 7:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 8:09 pm

Ok, just a little update I've heard about. Apparently the very loud bang was actually a ground maroon (an effect designed to give a big flash and bang sound), the fires to the left of the lake were just spent cakes that were burning (no issue) and the fire in CCL was caused by smouldering debris but because of its hard to reach location the fire services had to be called.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Mon Nov 05, 2012 8:12 pm

PeteB wrote:
Ok, just a little update I've heard about. Apparently the very loud bang was actually a ground maroon (an effect designed to give a big flash and bang sound), the fires to the left of the lake were just spent cakes that were burning (no issue) and the fire in CCL was caused by smouldering debris but because of its hard to reach location the fire services had to be called.


So Kev's arse got kicked by his nan then LOL....... "  i told you not to make it go over 100 db you frickin idiot, so you go and order a ground maroon lol "
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 12:36 am

Ground Maroons won't be above 100db more than 2miles away.. They are designed to project the blast into the ground so that you actually feel the shockwave, not necessarily hear it, although you obviously do hear it too.
And I can also tell you that a monumental amount of time and effort goes into designing the displays and picking the music. Do not underestimate the time that goes into these displays and plans. Some of the best firework and musical designers in the world are working on the Alton shows at the moment, and long may it last! You would definitely know the names of the musical designers, firework buff or not.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 3:32 am

CA2000 wrote:
andyuk200523 wrote:
I don't have a vast understanding of pyros, however, I am a bit of a geek and like to know a little about a lot...

From what I understand falling shells and shells exploding in the racks are accidents, falling before exploding can be due to a damp shell, not launching high enough , thus falling to the ground before exploding.

Exploding in the rack can be either a dodgy shell, or just pure bad luck....

The way I see it, Alton should put some effort into designing a whole show and not just having fireworks, bring back lake projections, multiple lasers, gas cannons etc..., none of these create noise, but make for a fantastic display!!!!


Well said..... I share the same sentiment. It doesnt create noise, So whyon earth has pre show entertainment, lake projection etc., as you rightly say, stopped ?

I think Pete's Nailed it to be honest..... Tassaud's Entertainment team and studios etc., were probably on the case.
Now its probably some dude picking his nose, who works in the house next to the oblivion car station on the ground. 

I think it goes something like this.

" Kev, we got fireworks to organise !  :shock: Its in two weeks, don't forget music, and phone the company that does them ! "

Nom Nom Nom..... Kev scrambles of chair, " Urgh, sh*t yeah.....  :?  mmmmm, KK ... Errr, www.ichoons....... no, Itunes.com ".

Search, 8) " Drum and Ba...... Nooo, erm Pop Mega-mix..... dooo be dooo...... Katy Perry, Ne-yo, blaa blaa ( Bites into a crunchy ham salad sandwich ) yeh that'll do  "  Mwah ha ha ha ha.

Brrp Brrp.. Brrp Brrp  :|...  "Hello Is that Julie ? ...... I mean Jubilee ?  Yeh, we need some fireworks enit..... For Alton Castle....... Towers i mean !

....When for you say ?.... erm November.... errrr  2, three, and FORth ? ..... 

What do i need ? .... I dunno, just some big ones to go with sum uber cool chart music and lazery things  :lol:.....

.... 15 grand you say  :shock:..... KK, wow.... suppose its a saving compared to last year man safe  ! , Just make sure they explode with da music though and make it real sparkle... but its gotta be below 100db or my grandma will kick my f***in ass  :( ! ......

Whats that you say ? ..... what speakers do we have ? " ......................................The other person, has cleared ! 


LOL!
But
Another possibility is that, due to stream lining, maybe everyone at Merlin is busy as heck with other priorities. So they might ask someone who's already got 5 projects they've put all their effort into so when they get asked to "sort out the fireworks" aswell they get on the phone and sort out something quick. "Just give us some proven marketed music please.... Yes sorry I am indeed eating my sandwich and drinking my super strength coffee while talking to you."

I thought something they could do at times like this, is a roll call in their infrastructure or even the ground staff. In this case you could ask for people of refined taste in statistically popular music STYLES to come forward and tell them a few songs that are COOL - then they use those
- so its semi marketed.

(Of course, the right number of people should be employed aswell)

ALSO Merlin is a big company so they might have to pay copyright on most songs (not that that should rule it out at all). I think classical music isn't copyrighted.
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 9:19 am

Would be good to ask customers what themes they would like. Perhaps, In some sort of poll.
Vote for a theme, the best one gets put forward to Alton, kick their ass into gear and get the proper themes back like the good old days !
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 10:09 am

To say it was quite maybe the park should look at there facebook page once in a while as they posted they had stopped the cheap tickets which by the looks of it put alot of people off. As alot was kicking off on there
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 3:33 pm

wardbjuk wrote:
Ground Maroons won't be above 100db more than 2miles away.. They are designed to project the blast into the ground so that you actually feel the shockwave, not necessarily hear it, although you obviously do hear it too.
And I can also tell you that a monumental amount of time and effort goes into designing the displays and picking the music. Do not underestimate the time that goes into these displays and plans. Some of the best firework and musical designers in the world are working on the Alton shows at the moment, and long may it last! You would definitely know the names of the musical designers, firework buff or not.


Of course I joke about the planning. I know in reality displays take a lot of planning, whether they are as good as previous years or not.

One thing I will say is, I don't care if "Dr Dre himself" put that music mash-up together, it is not massively difficult to do. Especially when comparing it to the work involved in creating a whole theme and stuff !
All i'm saying is, there are lots of people, who, having been to previous years, all agree that there just didn't seem much thought into the whole show as a general experience.

Chart music is easy to seek out and re mash...... I remember the "Terror of the Towers" day where it was several orchestral tracks / Hall of the Mountain King etc., and each firework scene just went with each song !

Rather than pick a bunch of tunes off the latest top 40, they specifically went out and searched for music that went with the theme, lighting, fireworks and whole spectacle. Where as this year, there was no theme, no lake spray, no flames and not much pre-show entertainment. 
Last edited by CA2000 on Tue Nov 06, 2012 3:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 4:47 pm

CA2000 wrote:
wardbjuk wrote:
Ground Maroons won't be above 100db more than 2miles away.. They are designed to project the blast into the ground so that you actually feel the shockwave, not necessarily hear it, although you obviously do hear it too.
And I can also tell you that a monumental amount of time and effort goes into designing the displays and picking the music. Do not underestimate the time that goes into these displays and plans. Some of the best firework and musical designers in the world are working on the Alton shows at the moment, and long may it last! You would definitely know the names of the musical designers, firework buff or not.


Of course I joke about the planning. I know in reality displays take a lot of planning, whether they are as good as previous years or not.

One thing I will say is, I don't care if "Dr Dre himself" put that music mash-up together, it is not massively difficult to do. Especially when comparing it to the work involved in creating a whole theme and stuff !
All i'm saying is, there are lots of people, who, having been to previous years, all agree that there just didn't seem much thought into the whole show as a general experience.

Chart music is easy to seek out and re mash...... I remember the "Terror of the Towers" day where it was several orchestral tracks / Hall of the Mountain King etc., and each firework scene just went with each song !

Rather than pick a bunch of tunes off the latest top 40, they specifically went out and searched for music that went with the theme, lighting, fireworks and whole spectacle. Where as this year, there was no theme, no lake spray, no flames and not much pre-show entertainment.


No no, I agree with you. Just wanted to point out how much work really goes into it all.

I agree that the music wasn't brilliant, but as has been said, Alton have a massive input into the music. Left to the firework company, you would have a different sound-track.

The fireworks displays of old were amazing. It was the Terror of the Towers display which I watched when I was about 10 which made me determined to get into fireworks. However, these were pre the 100db limit, and run by Tussauds not Merlin. I also imagine they had a much larger budget. If they were done now, the amount of pyro actually used in the shows would be reduced.

I guess you have to ask: Would you rather have this years display, which was a solid display, or no display at all?
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 6:40 pm

wardbjuk wrote:
However, these were pre the 100db limit, and run by Tussauds not Merlin. I also imagine they had a much larger budget. If they were done now, the amount of pyro actually used in the shows would be reduced.


The pyro itself doesn't need to change. The problem is the amount of money they spend on the lighting equipment which is very expensive. Back in the story telling days they would have a line of moving lights across the lake and use the house uplighters on the towers. Then you'd have either a single 40w YAG green laser or 3 smaller 8-12w greens.

Now they're using 7 RGB laser heads, a vast amount of moving beam lights on both the far side and audience side of the lake, a ton of LED uplighters on pretty much every tree in front of the towers, LED uplighters on the ruins and also the string LED lights which dangle over the ruins. Oh and I've just remembered the search lights randomly plonked on the towers roof as well.

If they cut back on all that they'd have the budget to hire a water screen and some special effects, like the MTFX Firedance. Video and story produced for free in house.  Hey presto!
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Tue Nov 06, 2012 9:21 pm

A lot of speculation on here but none of the "information" seems to be correct. A lot of effort goes into the displays and all you can do is sit and rip it apart. yes it may have been a smaller show than last year which i went to but so has the attendance, you cant spend the same money with less money coming in, that isnt how business works. Unfortunately money is tight everywhere, yes im in business my self and i know this too. People arnt given a "blank cheque" so to speak any more.

why cant people just enjoy the show that is put on instead of picking it to pieces, god how is it going to be when the new ride comes out is the money spent on that going to be enough or should they spend more.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Wed Nov 07, 2012 3:48 am

wardbjuk wrote:
Do not underestimate the time that goes into these displays and plans. Some of the best firework and musical designers in the world are working on the Alton shows at the moment, and long may it last! You would definitely know the names of the musical designers, firework buff or not.


Really? who?
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Wed Nov 07, 2012 11:44 am

sebshep18 wrote:
A lot of speculation on here but none of the "information" seems to be correct. A lot of effort goes into the displays and all you can do is sit and rip it apart. yes it may have been a smaller show than last year which i went to but so has the attendance, you cant spend the same money with less money coming in, that isnt how business works. Unfortunately money is tight everywhere, yes im in business my self and i know this too. People arnt given a "blank cheque" so to speak any more.

why cant people just enjoy the show that is put on instead of picking it to pieces, god how is it going to be when the new ride comes out is the money spent on that going to be enough or should they spend more.


Mate....from paying fans view, just as I will rip apart my football team if they play s**t on a Saturday. As long as i'm paying 35 odd quid to get in to AT. If i think it could be improved i think I have the right to discuss it.

I, and others on here are not asking for a world beating display..... what we're saying is that things that don't exceed db limits, and don't cost as much money could have been implemented for a more magical show.

As said above, if they are spending loads on lights..... then, perhaps cut back on that and use some money for the spray projection etc.  You know, spread the budget rather than bung it all on lights, a chart mix and the display.

I am not saying the display was sh*t by any means.... i'm just saying that things they used to incorporate into the even, aren't there any more and over the years of seeing each display, you do notice it.



Who knows, maybe one day this court order will be gone and we might see a different side of AT..... like the old days. But until then, were stuck with the Ropers "miserable ass" restrictions !
Last edited by CA2000 on Wed Nov 07, 2012 11:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: 2012 fireworks

Wed Nov 07, 2012 3:39 pm

sebshep18 wrote:
why cant people just enjoy the show that is put on instead of picking it to pieces, god how is it going to be when the new ride comes out is the money spent on that going to be enough or should they spend more.


Because when you're being charged £45 a ticket and traveling over 200 miles to attend a show which:

A) you know has been completely different and spectacular in the past...
B) has been continuously hyped to death by the marketing department as "the ultimate fireworks show"...

...then you have a right to pick it apart and moan for being absolutely ripped off, for what is little more than a council display with some flashing lights. Leeds Castle, Drayton Manor, and countless others which I'd be prepared to name put on better displays this year for a fraction of the price.

And don't just take my word for it - this forum, TowersStreet, TowersNerd, UKFR, and Alton's own Facebook page are riddled with moaners and complaints from people not happy about the show.

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