Niagara Parks Power Station opens ‘Currents: Niagara’s Power Transformed’
Currents: Niagara’s Power Transformed is an epic sight and sound night-time show situated in the heart of a century-old hydroelectric power plant, which follows the spectacular transformation of water to electricity. Featuring immersive, interactive storytelling techniques, Currents offers an incredible multisensory experience amongst the massive decommissioned generators housed within the first major power plant on the Canadian side of the Niagara River.
Thinkwell Studio Montréal designed and produced the all-new immersive experience at Niagara Parks Power Station, working in close collaboration with the Niagara Parks Commission.
Spanning a 61,000 sq. ft., 115-year-old industrial space, Thinkwell created over 40 minutes of projection-mapped content and lighting design for the night-time show. In lieu of using off-the-shelf solutions, Thinkwell created fully custom tools for the project, utilising a network of 23 projectors, 35 speakers, and full-fledged proprietary projector autocalibration and interactive tracking systems in order to bring the power plant to life.
While the intent of the project originally began as a traditional, seated multimedia show, Thinkwell’s team saw even more promise in the beautifully dormant power plant, envisioning a fully interactive and immersive experience—one that audiences won’t just watch, but can experience all around them, as the night-time light and sound show fills the building’s generator room.
Since operations ceased in 2005 and the plant decommissioned from active service, the power station has been reopened as a historic visitor experience and now transformed into a spectacular immersive and interactive light and sound show through projection mapping, a breath-taking original score, and reactive technologies that Thinkwell Studio Montréal designed and developed custom for the project. Visitors of all ages are invited into the show’s story of following water’s transformation into electricity, beginning as one tiny drop of water in the Horseshoe Falls, moving through the turbines, and transforming into a spark of electricity.
“It’s not a show just for adults. It’s inspired by children and their wanderlust. Their desire to explore these really unique places and to look under and all around. We introduce children as characters very early on in the show, so that hopefully they inspire people to stay connected to that playfulness and this desire to explore” states Émilie F. Grenier, Thinkwell Studio Montréal creative director.