Nicole, Queen's Square | June 9, 2022
Since its grand opening, the Old Post Office has featured an impressive display of lights, illuminating the building on select evenings. Commissioned by the City of Cambridge, the Old Post Office Light Show uses visual effects, called projection mapping, to transform the front (street side) of the Old Post Office in an amazing colourful and transformative display.
The show was produced by Westbury National, a sound, lighting, and video installation company based out of Toronto. They focus on installing audiovisual equipment for corporate, municipal, and many other types of customers. In some cases, these projects may also include content development, for which Westbury National employs content creators. Some of their most well-known projects include: the CN Tower LED lights, the Scotiabank Arena (formally the Air Canada Centre), multiple performing arts theatres, and corporate clients – almost anything involving audio, video or lighting equipment. For the Old Post Office’s premiere projection mapping show, the team at Westbury created a story that journeys through the history of Cambridge. Focusing on the Old Post Office, this story featured many images, such as maple leaves, books, animals, and dancers in a nightclub.
John Coniglio is the account manager at Westbury who managed this project. His team spatially mapped the building in the virtual environment, at which point the video content could be manipulated to match the architectural features of its façade – right down to the pixel. A custom two-storey steel tower holds and protects the four Christie projectors needed for the show. From optical illusions and 3D effects to unique senses of movement where the video interacts with the architectural features of the surface, the show is quite the multimedia spectacle. John credited his team for doing “a fantastic job with the content” through the creation of original art for the show.
The show debuted at the Old Post Office Party on July 6, 2018, and it has continued to be a popular destination, with people parking their cars, bringing their lawn chairs and hot drinks, and enjoying the show with their neighbours. It continues throughout the fall and winter with specialized autumn, Halloween, and Christmas shows.
This digital projection system is managed and funded through the City of Cambridge. Find current show dates and times for the Old Post Office Light Show on the City of Cambridge website.