Barco and FUNA International have partnered to develop projection, LED, lighting and controller solutions for several entertainment venues from stem to stern on the newly launched Allure of the Seas, the world's largest cruise ship, built by Royal Caribbean International
Visualization pioneer Barco is supplying integrated creative lighting and projection solutions for multiple live stage and cinematic shows presented on Allure of the Seas. The cornerstone of the deployment is a 3D digital cinema theatre – the first installation on a new cruise ship – leveraging Royal Caribbean's pioneering alliance with DreamWorks Animation to showcase first-run movies produced by the company. Barco's ultra-bright DP2K 20-C digital cinema projector marked the occasion by showing a video of the “Princess Fiona®” character, from the Shrek®” animated movie series, christening the ship. The projector, featuring Texas Instruments' DLP Cinema® technology, will present 2D and 3D movies in the ship's 1,400-seat main theatre.
“By partnering with the best manufacturers and service providers, we've been able to offer our guests the ultimate entertainment cruise experience. Barco's help during the design phase was invaluable, combining with FUNA's planning and installation expertise to produce a first-class product in every respect,” commented Christopher Vlassopulos, Entertainment Technology & Technical Direction for Royal Caribbean International & Celebrity Cruises. “We're looking forward to expanding our winning partnership with Barco and FUNA as we deploy 3D digital cinema in 2011 on three additional ships: Oasis, Freedom and Liberty of the Seas.”
Working closely with FUNA International, a leading cruise ship multimedia design, engineering and integration company, Barco provided products for several entertainment venues throughout the ship. The Amber Theatre (which doubles as the 3D Cinema) presents Broadway-style shows such as “Chicago: The Musical” and “Blue Planet” using a Barco package comprised of eight DL.3F™ digital lighting fixtures, two Axon Media Servers and a Road Hog™ Full Boar controller. Studio B, the ship's ice skating venue, utilizes four DL.3Fs and four Axon Media Servers to produce a multimedia-enhanced “How to Train Your Dragon” ice show, featuring video projections on the scenery and ice skating floor. The DL.3F features a three-chip light engine and onboard media server loaded with a wealth of digital content. This intelligent moving luminaire creates seamless vertical, horizontal, or central panoramic media projections controlled from a lighting console.
“We've enjoyed a long, successful history with Barco/High End Systems products. The products they make are extremely seaworthy and offer superior image quality, versatility, and durability – all are critical needs in ocean-going entertainment travel. We've built a solid relationship with Barco over the years as a result of their open communication, excellent reliability and dedication to providing the best entertainment technology available,” commented Rex Stull, President of FUNA International.
In the center of the ship, the Royal Promenade hosts parades and other live entertainment using Barco's Road Hog Full Boar console. The AquaTheater, an outdoor pool and stage featuring aerial acrobatics, and springboard diving, features “Let You Entertain Me,” a Madagascar-inspired show and “OceanAria,” which employs two OLite 612 LED walls (1,944 pixelsl/12 mm pixel pitch) driven by Axon Media Servers. Barco's unique SMD technology enables wide-angle, close-up viewing of images on the LED walls to offer patrons a premium experience from any seat on the deck.
“Barco's LED walls present a rugged, high quality solution to address the cruise industry's growing desire to incorporate video into more and more entertainment options,” commented Derek Warner, Senior Project Manager for FUNA. “They're also very quick and easy to install and maintain, a must for a cruise ship's rapidly shifting operations. Royal Caribbean has also benefited from standardizing much of its equipment with Barco, which facilitates cross-training among the ship's employees who frequently move among the fleet.”
“We're honored to be chosen once again by FUNA and Royal Caribbean to assist in the delivery of innovative cruise line entertainment,” commented Bill Morris, VP Video & Lighting Solutions Barco North America. We continue to expand our offering of products purpose-built for harsh environments. Our solutions harness a number of breakthrough technologies that keep Barco on the cutting-edge of unique demand applications, and we're proud to continue fulfilling those needs with our partners at FUNA and Royal Caribbean.”