St Petersburg Annual Festival of Light

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The festival took place from 8p.m. up to midnight 5-6 November 2016 in the very center of the city. 4 November is the National Unity day in Russia (the holiday dedicated to the end of Polish intervention in 1612). Therefore, the festival was given to the city as a present.

Many things happened here for the first time:

  • St Isaac square that was used for the festival has buildings of different styles, and it was very difficult to design the show there.
  • 3d mapping united two teams, each one of them creating their own performance.
  • The spectators of the show for the first time could watch it from a bridge.
  • The light used at the festival included both art technology 3d mapping and light installations on the facades of the adjacent buildings.
  • The show used two facades for the first time in Russia.
  • The light reached the record height in our city: 101.5 m.
  • The administrative building façade was used for the show (the city council sits in Mariinsky palace).
  • Finally, over 60 multimedia projectors took part in the festival. Their power was over 1,200000lm.

Saint Petersburg is one of the leaders of the light design in the world. Unique shows using latest achievements in technology take place here every year. Amazing images are transferred to spectators with the help of 3D mapping. The festival of light is tightly connected with historic and visual image of the city and becomes part of the cityscape.

Creators of the project decided to depict events when people united to help each other and their motherland: floods of the 18th century, revolution of 1917, and siege of Leningrad during World War II. The sound was very important for the show. Classical and contemporary poems were carefully selected. As for music, it differed from Tchaikovsky to popular rock band songs.

Two magnificent buildings: St Isaac cathedral and Mariinsky palace were used as huge screens.

There were two performances, which started every 20 minutes and lasted 12 minutes. During the intermission, people could change their positions and watch the second show. If you were lucky enough to get to the middle of St Isaac square, you could watch both of them from the same point. The area was quite crowded. The illumination near the festival was switched off and the government closed the adjacent streets for cars.

The cost of the festival is $800,000. Having spent so much money, the city government hopes that it will become one of the most popular brands of our city. They are planning to use other monuments and buildings for the show. The creators of the festival think that after two evenings people will get inspired by it and it will help them to rediscover the city and find their own Saint Petersburg.

So if you think the performance is worth visiting, come to our city next year to see it with your own eyes.

However, even without this show our city is especially beautiful by night.  What is St Petersburg for you, which one would you choose as your own? Maybe the winter one covered with snow and beautifully illuminated at night? Come and check.