The iconic Radio City Music Hall in New York City celebrates Christmas in grand style each and every year. American Christmas was asked to update the huge 65-feet-tall panel tree and 6-feet-tall star topper on the front of the building by replacing all the incandescent bulbs with the latest generation LED lights and adding computerized special effects. Animated Lighting supplied the light controllers, programming and on-site expertise.
This was a huge job requiring many trades coordinating thousands of details over several months. Animated Lighting worked closely with tree builders, electricians, crane operators, riggers and security personnel. Starting at midnight traffic was rerouted for ten hours leading to a spectacular display in the Big Apple.
Electrical schematic of the 65 foot tall tree on the front of Radio City Music Hall in New York City. There are 11 rings, each with four sections and each section has multiple circuits for different light colors.
Electrical schematic for the 6-foot star on top of the tree.
The facade of the Radio City Music Hall at midnight before any outside Christmas work has begun.
The huge tree is stored off-site in a warehouse and broken down into panels. Panels are then trucked in as needed and unloaded onto racks for temporary on-site storage.
Sections of the tree superstructure and panels are assembled on the ground and hoisted into place. Riggers attach everything to the building facade, connect the electrical circuits and do any troubleshooting required.
Labeling is the key to a successful installation. Each panel and each electrical circuit in the panel are marked.
The tree is starting to come to life about 5 am. Note one ring in the center has no power. Also note one panel with just the red LEDs turned on.
7 a.m. and the crane is holding the top of the tree in place while riggers attach it to the building. Simultaneously testing continues on other electrical circuits in the structure.
At the base of the tree, behind the Radio City Music Hall marquee holds the Animated Lighting controllers.
Finally, about 8 am the 6' tree topper is hoisted into place.
The final tree with just the white LEDs turned on.