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 Montreal Fireworks Forum —› 2017 Display Reviews —› Italy - Vaccalluzzo Events SRL reviews
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Posted: Jul 9, 2017 00:00:13

Hi everyone,

Please post your reviews of the Italian display here.


Posted: Jul 9, 2017 02:47:07   Edited by: fredbastien

The 2017 competition actually began tonight with the second appearance of Vaccalluzzo. I thought it was a very good show with great Italian products. As the extravaganza began, it became obvious that Westerlies were going to make it an immersive experience for the on-site audience. Fortunately, wind speed was high enough to quickly move the smoke behind us, so we had a clear view on all parts of this very active show.

It would have been a shame to not see all the pyrotechnic products used in this show. For me, the quality of the fireworks products is clearly the strongest component of this performance. A high proportion of shells made multiple effects : multi-break shells, shells with farfalles, pistils or other inner effects, many of them with single or multiple colour changes (some of them in clear sequences instead of all stars at the same time), etc. The colours were especially bright and diverse, including many shades of primary colours. These products were fired from all four permanent ramps as well as the fifth ramp added in the centre of the lake. The lake itself came into life a couple of times, mostly with nautical flares and fountains.

The design of this pyromusical show had a traditional style. The synchronization was excellent through the show, since the pace of the fireworks followed the rhythm of the soundtrack, without the long-lasting razor-shape type of synchronization favoured by some other contestants. The theme “Bellissima Sicilia” was a loose one with limited effectiveness to glue all 12 segments together : while it has been extensively explained by an opening narrative which last 3 minutes and 12 seconds, the connection between the theme and the show was not obvious at all, at least during the first half of the show (except some Italian flag patterns). Thank God, the script was elegant, the voice was clear, and we saw a good amount of pyros during this narrative over enjoyable Steve Jablonsky’s music. Most of these pyros were silent fireworks (flares, fountains, candles of comets), but they were later augmented by louder shells before the end of the narrative, which became less audible, so the mix sounded somewhat anti-climactic. Furthermore, as it was the case in 2012, the firing patterns were pretty basic, with numerous candles and left-right/right-left sequences. They didn’t have the level of complexity and diversity of other contestants. For example, I would have appreciated a clearer illustration of the Etna volcano evoked in the narrative. Near the end of the display, I felt afraid by a 10- or 15-second “black out.” A couple of firing problems occurred, but there were minor and didn’t detract from a very good show. The finale was a spectacular one and I felt some vibration under my boots, as dust from this volcanic fireworks fell on us!

The musical choice was excellent, all the segments were very appropriate for a fireworks show. Bellini’s musics, in particular, were an excellent backdrop for the finale! It included some classical and opera pieces (e.g., Carmen, Funiculi Funicula), which also contributed to the “traditional style,” in a very positive way. However, I did not really understand the choice of the musics regarding the Sicilia theme. During the first half of the show, most of them came from United States, France (Amélie Poulin) and even Croatia (with Nostradamus by Maksim Mrvica, which was heard in Mirnovec Pirotehnika performance in 2013).

To summarize, at a first glance, this display had strenghts and “weaknesses” similar to Vaccalluzzo debut display in 2012 and they won the Bronze Jupiter. I enclose “weaknesses” because other people don’t care as much as I do about the theme and the cohesiveness of all segments, so it is not clear to what extent it actually plays a role. With only 6 contestants this year (in contrast with 8 teams in 2012), Vaccalluzzo may be on the podium again. However, it was the very first display in competition this year, so it is too soon to make a clearer prediction.


Following the routine established a couple of years ago, the master of ceremony Michel Lacroix was not there tonight, but he had recorded most pre- and post-show segments. The nominative introduction of the pyros crew is the only one performed by someone else. We assume that he will be back for the closing display.

Finally, the synchronization between Lacroix's countdown, the Ferris Wheel, and the new lighting system on the Jacques-Cartier bridge has been adjusted. It perfectly worked tonight. The pattern is as follow : lights are progressively turned off from extremities – and from the lowest central section – of the bridge structure towards the highest columns topped by Eiffel Tower reproductions, which are extinguished at the very end of the countdown. The Jacques-Cartier bridge has always been the (reflective) backdrop of La Ronde fireworks, so it is absolutely great to see this icon joining the party.


Posted: Jul 9, 2017 10:08:54

The video of the show is up for forum members to view.


Posted: Jul 9, 2017 16:44:06   Edited by: Smoke

My video can be seen using the following link:


I also caught a distant lightning occurrence towards the SE, around 9:25 p.m., as shown near the beginning of the video! That is the first time that I have seen two consecutive fireworks evenings at this competition where lightning (distant or overhead) made an appearance.

Very enjoyable display!


Posted: Jul 9, 2017 18:22:17

Here's my video contribution



Posted: Jul 11, 2017 16:24:26

Fred you nailed that on point. The only thing that was disappointing was there finale. I felt like there 2012 finale was alot more better and louder and bigger. This years finale was ok and really didnt give me that wow factor. Overall though the soundtrack was really amazing. Also effect wise it was really beautiful and awesome. Also with there theme and fireworks it matched perfectly. Timing was also very flawless.

Fred your right about repeated angles some times, but this display was very good overall.

Posted: Jul 11, 2017 19:45:17

I agree with the comments from all those above. I thought this was a very good display. The opening narration was definitely too long. Likewise, once the more powerful shells started, the audio was fully drowned out.

That said, I thought the shells were of excellent quality. The show was consistently very colourful and the full space was consistently filled. I also thought that the show was intelligent enough to allow for the smoke to dissipate. This is something that not every team considers.

From an artistic standpoint, the theme was very "vague". However, it was a nice show to start the official 2017 competing season.

Posted: Jul 11, 2017 20:16:35

I also agree with the comments above - here is my report: http://montreal-fireworks.com/ReportBlog/?p=1284


Posted: Jul 13, 2017 18:25:31

Following an early-morning of strong to severe thunderstorms, moderately humid and reasonably warm conditions were present for the return of this Italian participant. Evening temperatures were mostly around 21 C but dropped to 20 C by just before the display. Partly cloudy skies were also present through most of the evening, though some instability led to sparsely distributed convection in the distance, including a briefly sustained thunderstorm (occasional lightning observed in the distance towards the SE, from the 9:16 p.m. to 9:27 p.m. time frame). Winds were a little breezy during the evening and were largely from the West to WSW, causing the smoke to blow towards the La Ronde audience at a somewhat gentle, but reasonable, pace. The audience was not particularly large, but the area certainly featured larger attendance than during the opening display.

The show began slowly following the countdown due to an extended period of narration, with the purpose of conveying critical elements encompassing the display and give relevance to the designated theme. As Fred and Paul noted, the narration did, indeed, last for just a little over three minutes. Luckily, there were some pyrotechnics to enforce some parts of the narration. The display featured many energetic segments that included the typical Italian shell of shells and multi-breaks, as well as shells of salutes, which constantly kept the audience looking forward to more! The performance was also very colorful and often in the traditional mixture. Many large calibre shells were expected for this display, and, indeed, they were numerous and often supported the pyrotechnics taking place at low- to mid-level. I also personally loved the way the display sustained its symmetry from left to right and top to bottom most of the time, often complimented by some very interesting firing angles. There were a few moments, though, where some asymmetry was seen along low-level, especially near the very end of the show.

Synchronization was mostly nicely executed, and there were attempts at some very tight sequencing with some of the soundtrack used. There had also been a few moments where more creative synchronization was seen with the one-shot attempts, as some low level effects, such as the comets in the opening segment following the narration, were well timed with some of the signature components of some soundtrack. The soundtrack itself was mostly enjoyable - it had an operatic/theatrical feel, which can often work well with the fireworks and create an energetic/exciting and immersive display. The transitional shells (these closely resemble the character of ghost shells) were also very effectively utilized.

That said, conceptually, I thought that the display had a more general appeal, giving the impression of an overall simplistic pyromusical design and, at times, a somewhat rudimentary firing scheme. While I very much enjoyed the frequent appearances of the shell of shells and multi-breaks (especially focused towards the final 33% of the display), for example, they occupied a little too much of the display to really generate a more complex appearance due to redundancy. This perhaps limited more creative opportunities to illustrate the various musical choices and bring choreography to a higher degree of precision. It might have been useful to integrate into the display other effects (maybe even structures) to bring out the vibrancy of the selected soundtrack and amplify synchronization. Also, I thought that the transition from one segment to another could have sometimes benefitted from longer pauses, rather than abruptly beginning a new segment. Product quality was excellent, but, for the reasons mentioned previously, the actual product range seemed more restricted. I also suspect that the color richness of the display was often less for those at La Ronde because of the smoke persistently blowing towards them, and the borderline moderate-high humidity present and earlier rainfall might have also played a role.

As others have also noted previously, the theme was not obvious. Although the rather long narration at the beginning explained various elements of the thematic premise in attempt to enhance clarity, I still felt that what was intended to be conveyed was largely elusive during the display. The narration period also persisted for much too long and did leave an anti-climactic feeling immediately after the countdown, although some activity took place as the narratives unfolded. Nevertheless, the essence of the theme seemed realized indirectly through the traditionally-oriented concept that engendered the display and soundtrack. Similarly, though the title of the theme was unclear, it had a traditional feel to it, and I sensed this during the display. I also really loved the finale, especially because of its color richness (which was the case through most of the show), its abundance of salutes, and the numerous high-level shells overseeing the activity below. However, I thought that it could have been a little longer in duration, probably through a more prolonged crescendo and several rounds more of massive salutes and shells before coming to a close. It was a great finale, though!

Despite these criticisms, this was a thoroughly enjoyed display by the audience, notably due to the frequent bursts of large shells at higher altitudes, and the overall noisy/thumping nature of the show!


Posted: Jul 17, 2017 22:11:52

That was, in my opinion, a good show, specially in terms of products. But the truth is that it wasnt as good as I expected. I was expecting something like ther last show in 2012(?¿) but with some improvements in terms of theme and design patterns. But actually both things werent really good.

The "O sole mio"part was from my point of view the only remarkable segment in terms o design, using in a smart way the whole area, heighs and products. The show was in some way too simple. Cant see a hard work behind specially in terms o design . Of course it was good in general, I mean, its Vaccalluzzzo, for me one o the best companies in the world, but i was expecting more than las time they were in Montreal and actually it was less.

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