Kabuki Comes to Las Vegas in a Whole New Way with Digital Technology
Las Vegas, U.S. - Panasonic Corporation has achieved one of the world's largest water screen projections as it provided special support for a Kabuki performance held August 14-16 at the Bellagio Hotel, owned by MGM Resorts International. Produced by Shochiku Co, Ltd. and titled "Panasonic Presents Kabuki Spectacle at Fountains of Bellagio: Koi-Tsukami" (Fight with a Carp), the event used sixteen Panasonic PT-DZ21K projectors (brightness: 20,000 lumens) to break previous records for water screen projections. The Panasonic projectors infused the Bellagio Hotel's fountains with gigantic projections reaching a maximum of 18 meters (59 feet) in height and about 300 meters (984 feet) in width - almost the size of three U.S. pro football fields.
Along with Panasonic and Shochiku, a key collaborator was teamLab, which is esteemed worldwide for its digital tech artwork. In grand Vegas style, the event made accessible to a Las Vegas audience a traditional Japanese art form with a rich history spanning more than 400 years. Panasonic Presents Kabuki Spectacle at Fountains of Bellagio is the first in a series of projects to create a new entertainment form with elements of Kabuki. "Japan Kabuki Festival" with Kabuki performances and related events, is being planned for May 2016 in Las Vegas.
On a special stage that floated above the Bellagio Hotel's world-famous artificial lake, lead actors Ichikawa Somegoro and Nakamura Yonekichi delivered a stunning performance of "New Kabuki" - combining the Japanese traditional summer Kabuki title "Fight with a Carp" with fantastical modern digital art. The grandiosity of the stage performance drew tens of thousands of spectators in total over five performances.
Panasonic holds the world's largest share of industrial projectors in the 5,000 lumen-plus brightness range, according to data provided by PMA Research. The projectors used for this spectacle are the same type as those that powered the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony. "This incredible digital art performance combined with an unconventional setting - the surface of a man-made lake - demonstrates how AV projection can push the boundaries of entertainment," said Joseph M. Taylor, Chairman & CEO of Panasonic Corporation of North America. "Working with partners like Shochiku and teamLab in this project allows Panasonic to demonstrate new kinds of high-impact visual solutions for our B-to-B customers that will keep their audiences coming back. And it allows us to highlight the key features of our compact, lightweight and high-performance projectors."
When it came to Panasonic's decision to partner with Shochiku, it was very much about a shared philosophy. "We can appreciate Shochiku's efforts to always create something new while, at the same time, carrying on a tradition," said Executive Officer of Panasonic Corporation in charge of Groupwide Brand Communications Division Satoshi Takeyasu. The shared goal here, as pointed out by Mr. Takeyasu, is to communicate a rare and beautiful part of Japanese culture to people in other countries who have not experienced it yet. "We hope it will leave an indelible impression of Kabuki and surprise and inspire everyone who sees it," he said.
Panasonic 3-chip DLP(TM) Projectors - PT-DZ21K Series
- High-level brightness at 20,000 lm from a compact body with a mass of 43kg
- WUXGA resolution and various 3D projection capabilities
- Unique Four-Lamp System that enables 24/7 projection and a high level of reliability in a variety of conditions
- Geometric Adjustment for Specially Shaped Screens - easily enabling projections onto spherical, cylindrical and other specially shaped screens
- Multi-Screen Support System - seamlessly connecting multiple screens
- Multi-Unit Brightness Control - automatically correcting the brightness fluctuations that occur over time in the individual projectors of a multi-screen system