The Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes has taken place every holiday season in New York City since 1933. But this year the always festive finale will look different — and be way more high-tech.
That’s because Intel is bringing in its lightweight Shooting Star Mini drones — the ones that made appearances at the Olympics and the Super Bowl — for some light-filled, choreographed visions. The final scene is called “Christmas Lights”; it’s all very on theme.
Most notable will be the sheer number of drones: A hundred of them, all synced and moving together to create holiday cheer. The drones hold LED lights that can make 4 billion colorful combinations.
This is the first indoor theater performance for this many Intel drones, and the first indoor drone light show for Radio City Music Hall. Earlier this year, 50 of the drones flew through the San Francisco Pride indoor opening event. At Audi’s electric car unveiling in September, 850 mini drones made the Audi logo outside the venue.
Here’s the scene: Aerialists will fly across the stage, then 100 Christmas lights (aka drones) will surround Santa Claus, and then the Rockettes will appear and finish off with a dance. Above there’s a preview of part of the final scene, with the drones flying around Santa.
The show begins Friday night at Radio City Music Hall and runs through Jan. 1.