Wednesday, 28 November 2018

Illuminart show wins at the Australian Event Awards 2018

Illuminart’s Founding and Artistic Director Cindi Drennan and Business Development Manager Vent Thomas accepting the award for Best Small Event at the Australian Event Awards

With three illuminart projects chosen as Finalists, Illuminart attended the 2018 Australian Event Awards on the Sunshine Coast on 21 November 2018, with fingers crossed for a win.

What a wonderful surprise it was when the Best Small Event Nationally was announced as “The Lights of Christmas“, Rockhampton.

We, along with our partner The Cathedral Parish of St Joseph, Rockhampton are proud of this achievement amongst tough competition. We’re also very proud to have won the state award for Best Regional Event in Western Australia for the launch of the Ningaloo Arts Centre in Exmouth, and to be among the National finalists for the Best New Event award for Hills Illuminate with our partners Rouse Hill Town Centre and The Hills Shire Council.

Illuminart’s Founding Director Cindi Drennan said: “It is a very exciting time for us to see the team’s expertise and creative skills really shine, both in the production of successful events, and in the recognition of being finalists for these prestigious awards.”

About the Events:

Hills Illuminate 2017

Illuminart were commissioned by GPT group and Hills Shire to “Light up the Hills” for Christmas 2017 at the Rouse Hill Town Centre. This event was the first of its kind at the venue, and took a big step in new directions for Christmas and Summer entertainment.

The concept integrated community engagement, creative workshops with children, animated storytelling, large scale projection and a custom made giant inflated luminous sculpture known as AirLume. The brand new event sparked great curiousity among the local community, who were not used to seeing light-based performance and sculpture at the heart of an event!

The “Hills Illuminate” event ran for 17 evenings during December, promoted as a light show with a ‘twist on Christmas’. Every night families gathered to watch an animated story projected onto AirLume, as the sun set and the warm summer night came to life with a luminous story wrapped seamlessly around the sculpture.

The projected story combined Children’s artwork that had been created in November in art workshops for young people, with specially designed animations that celebrated creativity at Christmas time.

While waiting for it to be dark, children engaged in interactive playful activities with Lumifonica, a visual music instrument, and joyful illuminated hula and interactive displays by performers. Children delighted in the illuminations and soundscapes, running and playing among the arched openings formed by AirLume’s curving spaces.

Animated displays also featured in the Rouse Hill Town Centre, where children’s artwork were displayed adding a vibrant and colourful addition to the centre and generated excitement by families.


The Lights of Christmas, Rockhampton

The Lights of Christmas was a free public event held from 17 to 23 December 2017, bringing over 20,000 people to share in the spectacular Christmas Story Projection onto St Joseph’s Cathedral in Rockhampton Queensland.

The 20-minute show featured two parts – the first an eight-minute animation reinterpreting
the perennial Christmas favourite, The Nutcracker, into a spectacular mapped architectural animation, and the second part showing 14 stunning Christmas-themed artworks based on the heritage stained glass of the magnificent Australian Gothic Cathedral.

Over the seven nights, from the opening night, the number in attendance exponentially increased as the nightly shows ran up to the last and final showing. The feedback received was overwhelmingly positive from the general public and the general feeling of excitement to see the Cathedral transform into the spirit of Christmas.

In a News Poll from, 96% of participants wanted to see a return of the event.

Margaret Strelow, Mayor of Rockhampton, said on social media “New favourite thing this Christmas… Light show at St Joseph’s Cathedral. ‘The Lights of Christmas’”. Her post received over 370 likes and 93 shares, with dozens comments including:
“Just Glorious !!! Was such a beautiful sight to see.”
“Thankyou to the Catholic Parish for this great free show.”
“A very festive light show… beautifully done!!”
“Such a wonderful Christmas light show thank you to all involved, a great family outing”
“Wow. How wonderful I’d love to go c this”

It was a very special event that brought together the best skills of animators, illustrators, musicians and technicians to bring a unique and vibrant Christmas event to families of Rockhampton.


Ningaloo Centre Launch, Exmouth

On 15th September 2017, an exciting show combining animated storytelling projections and synchronised fireworks unfolded before a crowd of excited Exmouth residents, guests and tourists, interweaving the stories of the History of the Northwest Cape and Exmouth, local Community and lifestyle, Natural Environment; Ningaloo Reef and Cape Range.

The crowd of families and tourists enjoyed an innovative and spectacular presentation of synchronised fireworks and projections, that told the story of the town and region in a playful and entertaining show scripted from local stories, anecdotes and archival records.

Animated emus related important moments of history in witty conversations and a rap tune, interspersed with colourful re-enactments of much loved significant moments. The voices of the emus, and other characters, were performed by high school students and young residents, while artwork and photographs were contributed by local creatives.

The playful yarns were augmented with carefully selected fireworks that were positioned to look like they were part of the projection show. Oohs and aahs resounded as dolphin tails flipped up splashes of gold, whales spouted silver flares, and sea anemones threw up a dazzle of spiralling sparkles.

The show was part of a 50 year anniversary event, celebrating the official opening of the town of Exmouth and the Harold E Holt Naval Communication Station 50 years ago, on 16 September 1967. Exmouth has seen many changes since then, and one of the biggest and most recent milestones in its relatively short history will be the opening of the new Ningaloo Centre in 2017. These provided the opportunity to bring community and audience together to celebrate Exmouth’s lifestyle, culture and heritage as it looked back on the short but rich history of the town, the H.E.H. Station and the people who created the community.

“Just a quick note to say well done to the Shire for planning and delivering such a fantastic and memorable event. From Friday’s opening of the Ningaloo Centre to the fireworks all events were extremely well attended, professional and of a high calibre. Well done! It was great to hear such positive comments from the community and visitors alike, and a significant milestone in focusing on the future prosperity of Exmouth.” Odile May

“Please pass on my congratulations to your entire team, the 50 Year Celebration was absolutely spectacular, you should all be incredibly proud of what you’ve created to mark this special occasion! I personally enjoyed hearing all the positive conversations around the events, including the excitement and sense of pride the events and historical displays inspired!! You all certainly know how to bring your community together and truly celebrate such a special occasion – well done and thank you for all your hard work and efforts.” Kristy Bryan-Smith

Illuminart were thrilled to work with the community of Exmouth for the 50th anniversary, and involved artists and animators from Perth, Adelaide, regional SA and regional NSW on the project, collaborating with community members to develop the project.