Interview with Team Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks / Panzera S.A.S.

I met with Michael Lutz (of Rozzi’s Famous Fireworks) and Maria-Grazia Gerbaudo (of Panzera S.A.S.) to talk about their special partnership for the opening of the 33rd edition of the Montreal International Fireworks Competition (known as L’international des feux Lotto Quebec).

It will be Rozzi’s 7th and Panzera’s 31st participation in Montreal as well as Michael’s second appearance. This out-of-competition opening show has been specially designed to celebrate Montreal’s 375 anniversary. The public were invited to choose the songs appearing in the soundtrack and the competition director faced the not-easy task of assembling the list of 18 from around 35. With a mix of  artists old and young as well as new or seasoned, the soundtrack includes music that all generations will enjoy and represents the mosaic that is Montreal.

Michael took Paul’s soundtrack and, with the translation help of Maria-Grazia, converted it into pyrotechnic form. Choosing colours from Montreal’s coat of arms (red rose, blue fleur-de-lys, purple thistle and green shamrock – which represent the English, French, Scottish and Irish who built the city), he assembled a display that follows the both the music and history of the city. There will be some special set pieces – to be revealed on the night as well as a product list that is almost 100% pure Panzera. With new colours and one-shot effects this year, these will be used judiciously with Panzera’s renowned multi-break studata shells (including some specially created for this display). Michael noted that his script ties into each break of, say, a four-break shell and said the precision of the Panzera products allows this extra dimension to his creativity.

I asked if his approach this time would be different than when Rozzi competed in 2015 and he said that, despite this not being a competition display, he wanted to demonstrate his prowess and craft an excellent and enjoyable display. This time the Italian PyroLeda firing system will be used and Michael said this ties in well with their usual way of working. A total of around 4300 cues will be used spread over 136 32-cue firing modules.

Michael Lutz and Maria-Grazia Gerbaudo

Michael Lutz and Maria-Grazia Gerbaudo

Asked why people should attend this display, Maria-Grazia and Michael said “there’s nowhere more ‘Montreal‘ to be than at La Ronde for the opening fireworks of the season”. With the promised special effects specially created for the 375th anniversary of this home of the most prestigious pyromuscial competition, it’s hard to disagree!

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