Star Events supplied the best seats in the house, and more besides, for Fly By Night, artist Duke Riley’s spellbinding show featuring 1,500 pigeons wearing tiny LEDs, which took flight in Thamesmead at the weekend.
Part of LIFT 2018, London’s premiere festival of international performance, and more than 12 months in the planning, Riley adapted Fly By Night from its New York debut in 2016 for three shows in the capital.
The performances paid homage to pigeons’ Great War effort, tiny LEDs replacing the messages pigeons carried between the lines from 1914 to 1918. Called from their purpose-built, illuminated coop at dusk by Riley’s whistle, the specially trained birds lit up the sky in an unforgettable display over Thamesmead, which was home to munitions factories 100 years ago.
Rachel King, Star Events’ Project Manager, comments: “Alongside a 310-seat grandstand, we put an accessible viewing platform in, a tech control tower and a 20m wheelchair compliant access ramp, which required some creative thinking to design and build over an uneven, wild meadow. The variety and the quality of kit in the Star yard was invaluable.”
Carolyn Forsyth, LIFT’s Senior Producer, says: “Fly By Night was a massive project, in terms of health and safety, licensing, risk assessments et al.
“There was no infrastructure at the Thamesmead site, we had to create it all from scratch, and our partners, contractors and suppliers’ commitment to the project, their expertise, was one of the key reasons we were able to get this amazing spectacle off the ground.”