It's hailed as the largest fireworks show between Sacramento and Seattle, and tomorrow night at 10pm, the Redding Freedom Festival promises to be a sight to see as well as a musical delight. It’s all thanks to a local composer who has written the score for the "sky concert"
Booms, bangs, and crackles are standard firework sounds, but those are all secondary to the musical track that is the backbone of this show.
Mark Speer on Tuesday was reviewing his sound track in preparation for the big show. The 21 minute, 21 song, musical montage was born back in January.
“We try to get something in there that appeals to everyone so that they all have something they can relate to for their moment of the 4th of July fireworks,” said Mark.
A company called Pyro Spectaculars then synced it with $80,000 worth of fireworks.
“After that, I get the script which allows me to decide on how I need to lay out my show, put it together,” said Barry Renn, Pyrotechnic Operator for the Freedom Festival.
When it comes time to actually set the fireworks off, the lead Pyrotechnic Operator flips a switch and presses a button in accordance with the musical track.
“It will say ready to fire…then it will say cue 1…2….3…and it will go all the way up to 500,” said Renn.
Because the fireworks are shot three to five seconds early, they explode in perfect harmony with the music.
“It’s electrifying, it's a great rush, it’s like being on stage, I own the eyes and ears of everybody for about 20 minutes,” said Mark Speer.
“So if you don't have the music, you are not seeing or experiencing the whole show as it was designed,” said Lorraine Dechter, News Director at KFPR. She encourages people to tune in as they watch Wednesday’s show.
“88.9, just turn on your radio and you can listen to the score and you can look up at the sky and watch the fireworks,” said Dechter.
You can listen both in Redding on 88.9 FM and in Chico on 91.7 FM. Be sure to tune in early for the national anthem and a dedication to our fine city. The show starts around 10pm tomorrow at the Civic Auditorium but it can be seen from just about anywhere in town.