The fantastic show, which revealed the stately home in a brand new light, was staged to launch a series of such cultural events in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire next year.
The audience gasped in amazement as the walls of Chatsworth were transformed into a moving mass of colour and drama. Atmospheric fire baskets lit the lawn as the crowds watched the show unfolding on the side of the building.
An acrobat in a giant Catherine Wheel danced gracefully above the gardens before a breathtaking display of fireworks engulfed her. And that was just for starters.
Elemental Force, funded by the Arts Council, is a major arts project aimed at developing cultural tourism in the region, and showcasing the unique heritage of the two counties.
The series of free events will use historic locations in Nottingham, Derby, Newark and Derbyshire to capture the excitement of the region’s past, present and future through a feast of film, light and fire.
Arts Council England is funding the events, to raise the profile of Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire as a cultural tourism destination.
Peter Knott, director, Arts Council England, said: “Arts Council is delighted to be funding and supporting Elemental Force and this special series of events. Arts and culture make an important contribution to local communities and their economic growth.
“Following on from the huge success of the 2012 Cultural Olympiad, Elemental Force will deliver more first class arts to the region, and I’d encourage everyone to attend and help make Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire places of innovation, expertise and talent from which the rest of the country can be inspired.”
The Duke of Devonshire, hosting this evening’s event said: “Culture and the arts play a key role in attracting visitors to the region; the East Midlands boasts a wide array of heritage sites, exhibitions and events for visitors to experience. Each year a large number of visitors return to Chatsworth to enjoy annual exhibitions such as Beyond Limits contemporary sculpture in the garden, alongside temporary exhibitions such as the Arts Council funded Lionheart Project in 2012.
“Elemental Force will play an invaluable role in shining the spotlight on the region’s cultural heritage, and I am delighted that Chatsworth has been chosen for the preview of this series of very special shows.”
Stephen Munn, executive producer, Elemental Force said: “2012 has given people in the UK a taste for the excitement of attending large-scale cultural events, and Elemental Force will be a chance for locals and visitors to experience a new and exciting event, at some of the area’s most well-known historic venues.
“We’re looking forward to using the experience we’ve built on events such as Games Time in order to bring something really impressive to life here in Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire.”
Elemental Force is free to attend, and all are invited to experience the events. Visitors to the locations are encouraged to make a weekend of it, with visits to other local cultural attractions and events while in the region. The events are supported by Experience Nottinghamshire, Visit Peak District & Derbyshire, Discover Derby, Nottingham City Council and Newark and Sherwood District Council.
It will be staged at Nottingham Castle, Friday February 8; Derby’s Silk Mill, Thursday March 7; Newark Castle, Saturday March 16 and a yet to be announced venue in Derbyshire on Friday March 29.
Find our more at: http://www.elementalforceuk.com; follow them on Twitter: @elemental_force and on facebook.
Elemental Force is being staged by Derby-based Déda Producing, which is teaming up with some of the country’s biggest names in film, lighting, pyrotechnic animation and large-scale, fantastical, outdoor events.
Animations will be designed by Mick McNicholas – one of the development team of the Doctor Who BBC Online Games. The soundtrack will be created by Scanner, an electronic musician who has worked with high-profile artists including Radiohead. Walk the Plank will be directing the show and be producing the fire gardens and fireworks.
There will be more about the events in artsbeat magazine which is due out for the first time at the end of January.