Under the Blue

Multimedia Ballet Event for Swarovski

Performance events are ephemeral, but powerful, moments that allow a magical connection to be created with an audience. Our mission was to build a dream-like experience when we conceptualised and art directed this event for the launch of Swarovski’s latest jewelry collection in Shanghai. Our inspiration followed the theme of the collection, Under the Blue, where water and sky merge and reflect each other.

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The challenge

To emphasise the connection between water and crystals, an artificial lake within the Xintiandi development was chosen as a location. It offered us the possibility to seamlessly reflect the show we had in mind onto a giant water surface, but also presented numerous logistical and technical challenges.

Our Approach

We told a story of the relationship between crystal and water and built a mesmerising experience that captivated the audience. The idea of creating dance choreography, echoed by a multimedia installation, emerged from our initial discussion with Swarovski’s team. To achieve the perfect synchronicity between the dancers and the enormous video screen backdrop, we embarked on a long planning and development phase.

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The final result was 40 minutes of magic, making it an unforgettable moment for the 500 guests. The projected video scenes were planned to perfectly match the dance choreography, while reflecting upside-down in the water. The effect was most striking in the scenes where dancers were filmed under water and when their movements were matched by the virtual ‘crystal’ dancers on screen.

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The video screen was 8 meters high and 45 meters wide, and the stage was partially immersed so the dancers appeared to be walking on water. All of it made for an epic set-up that took an entire week.

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The video footage with the dancers were shot months in advance and included 3D mapping of their movements as well as underwater shots. Our artistic vision could not have been realized without the expertise and talent of some of Asia’s leading artists and performers, such as director, Timm Wu, choreographer, Jacob Cheng Tsung-Lung and video producer, Andy Stokes.