One played out like a three act opera and the other was a three day party.
The Coronation of King Charles III ranged from the bizarre to the extraordinary.
The first act – The Arrivals – so many people in bizarre costumes, including Katy Perry (but at least she provided some entertainment as she tried to find her seat) .
The second act – The Coronation – the whole arcane nature of it carried on with the weirdest rituals and everyone (in Westminster Abbey at least) taking it so seriously. The only saving grace was the music, from the sublime choral work to the gospel group. The only costume that didn’t look ridiculous in a 21st Century event was that worn by the sword carrier, Penny Mordaunt, Leader of the House of Commons. And she performed in heels – for over an hour.
The third act – The Procession – Imagine being the event manager for that, imagine having over 6,000 participants to wrangle.
And how do you get them all to step off at the same time?
The procession departed on the command of the Garrison Sergeant Major Andrew Stokes: “The Coronation Procession, by the Centre, Quick March.”
In ear monitors worn by the bass drummer in every marching band enabled the parade to step off at precisely the same time.
How to rehearse for an event like the Procession? Do it at midnight weeks in advance – without the regalia and with substitutes for the carriages.
London has the buildings and The Mall to enable such a spectacular event to be pulled off.
The follow up act was a concert that I tried to watch on channel 7 – I thought there was a limit on how many ads commercial TV could show per hour. There seemed to be as much airtime devoted to flogging stuff to us as there was actual content. So I gave up.
Of course the coronation is totally unnecessary – Charles became King automatically upon the death of his mother as will his son when he dies. So all in all it is just an excuse to show off.
Then again, most of our events are unnecessary. But where would we be without them?
Then a week later – Eurovision 2023
OK I’m a Eurovision tragic. I don’t get up in the middle of the night to watch it, but I do watch the repeat on SBS.
Two things attract me to Eurovision – the campiness and the OTT presentation, and the technology. Watching the evolution of lighting and screen technology to create sets that are so alive has been great to watch, particularly over the past decade.
Not only was Australia represented in the competition, the set designer is an Australian too.
Julio Himede graduated from NIDA in 1999 and his first design credit is for the Sydney 2000 Olympics followed by events such as MTV Australia Music Video Awards, ARIA Awards, Australia’s Next Top Model, and then international events mostly for broadcast.
I found a number of interesting articles about the set and lighting design including these
You can see how the LED panels work via this descriptor
Lighting Designer Tim Routledge is a graduate of the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and also has extensive TV experience.
And how good were Voyager – who were obviously just having the time of their lives. Speaking backstage, the band were overjoyed with their performance. “We are a progressive epic pop synth metal band from Perth, Western Australia, and we made it into the top 10 of Eurovision. Let that sink in for a little while,” Estrin said.
Obviously the SMH’s Michael Idato is also a fan Sweden wins, Australia ninth in thrilling Eurovision final showdown