Unlike many others, this group's music makes you think, the producer says.
YOUNGSTOWN -- Forget about getting the "Led" out. How about opening your mind to Pink Floyd.
Paramount's LaserSpectacular "Pink Floyd Laser Light Show" comes through Youngstown with an April 16 date at the Henry H. Stambaugh Auditorium.
"It's a little bit of everything," said Producer Steve Monistere, calling from his home in San Antonio, Texas. "It's a multimedia show with three giant screens that totally encase the stage. On the screens you see a combination of laser animations, which are becoming quite sophisticated these days, as well as video and special effect lighting."
Yes, Pink Floyd diehards, there are a few flying pigs to enhance the ambiance and accurately assist in replicating the creative vision of Roger Waters and David Gilmour.
After growing up with the music of Pink Floyd and witnessing many of the laser planetarium productions that were popular during the '70s, Monistere made the leap from "Dark Side of the Moon" fan to rock show producer in the mid-'80s, when he designed a touring stage show that highlighted the band's music using various visual mediums, including lasers.
Twenty years later and Paramount's LaserSpectacular "Pink Floyd Laser Light Show" is on the road all over the country, averaging roughly 80 dates a year.
"You get fans of the music but what's really surprising, you get people who are really curious about technology," Monistere said. "You get people who are just music fans. It's such a broad range of people who come out to see the show. It's amazing."
The production features the entire "Dark Side of the Moon" album, along with other memorable tracks from the band's cherished oeuvre. This brings up the interesting point that while there are other classic rock outfits whose legacy and music lives on, why is it that Pink Floyd's delicate balance of art rock and guitar anthems works with different mediums?
"If you can in your mind visualize what you're hearing, just imagine what happens when those visions come to life with lasers and lights and video," Monistere said. "You can't really say that about the Rolling Stones. That's rock 'n' roll. The Stones are something that you want to move to. It's not as cerebral. It doesn't make you think, it makes you feel. There are not a lot of artists who write music that makes you think and Pink Floyd's music makes you think."
Perhaps there is a stigma attached to the concept of a Pink Floyd laser show. While diffraction glasses are provided, offering concertgoers a unique visual perspective, certain audience members may or may not have been known for coming to the theater to hear their band's favorite music under the influence of various spirits.
"Everybody has their own way of seeing it in a different light and I guess there is a certain kind of reputation that goes along with a Pink Floyd show, like being a stoner show," Monistere said. "But if you go to our show, you're hard pressed to smell [anything]. We have a lot of college educated, middle-aged people bringing their kids. And also the way I produce the show, I don't go in that direction. I keep it more mainstream for everyone."