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Pink Floyd laser show evolves over 20 years

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Posted: Thursday, April 13, 2006 6:18 am

It started in 1986 as a simple laser light show, but 20 years later, the Pink Floyd Laser Spectacular has evolved into a full-blown trippy multimedia experience.

‘‘The show has changed with technology,’’ Laser Spectacular producer and founder Steve Monistere says. ‘‘We added special-effect lighting and then later video and sometimes pyro and concert sound.

About every four or five years, we totally revamp the show. By this time next year it will be a totally different show. Each year we make some changes to keep it fresh for the audience.’’

Monistere, who was working in concert production in San Antonio two decades ago, created the show when a friend approached him with the idea of combining lasers and the music of Pink Floyd.

‘‘‘We put it in a theater for two nights here in (San Antonio) and a lot of people came out,’’ he says. ‘‘We continued to build it up from there.’’

The show will roll into the Dodge Theatre Friday with a two-hour laser light spectacular, which will include two sets and a 20-minute intermission.

‘‘The first half is the complete ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ album,’’ Monistere explains. ‘‘The second half is the best of Floyd. We do some of their old stuff, a lot of stuff from ‘The Wall’ and things that people really know.’’

Monistere compares the multimedia experience to a concert.

‘‘It's like a Trans-Siberian Orchestra type of thing without the band,’’ he says.

And though you might expect to see some people lighting up, Monistere says the show isn't like a Grateful Dead concert.

‘‘There's little spots in the auditorium where something smells a little funny but that's few and far between,’’ he says. ‘‘Our audience is very diverse. You'll see a 55-year-old sitting next to a 15-year-old and everything in between.’’

Although the show, which travels to 80 to 90 cities a year, has come a long way in its 20 years, Monistere says there are a few things he wants to accomplish with the production.

‘‘When you're moving around the country, it's very difficult to do some of the things that I would like to do,’’ he says. ‘‘I hope to have it one day sit still in a Vegas-style environment where the time and energy and money is there to bring it to another level. . . . My dream for the show would be to have full-blown holograms on stage of band members performing the songs.’’

>>The Pink Floyd Laser Spectacular begins 8 p.m. Friday, April 14,

at Dodge Theatre, 400 W. Washington St., Phoenix. $22.

(602) 379-2888 or

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