Walt Disney World recruiting a new Principal Fireworks Designer as a return of nighttime shows gets closer

14 days ago in "Harmonious"

According to a new job posting, Disney is currently recruiting a new Principal Fireworks Designer for Walt Disney World.

The role was previously occupied by Brad Cicotti, who has worked on and designed many of the pyrotechnic elements for Walt Disney World's recent firework spectaculars.

Disney has a number of upcoming shows that will use fireworks, including Harmonious, and possibly a finale tag to Happily Ever After for the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World.

Here is the full description from the job listing:

Job Description

The Fireworks & Special Effects Principal Designer serves as the creative leader and overall representative for the Disney Live Entertainment Fireworks & Special Effects Design department. The demands of this role require an in-depth understanding of the design intent and the ability for realizing it through the effective execution of the creative process. As the leader, the Fireworks & Special Effects Principal Designer directs all special effects design (including pyrotechnics), helping to prioritize, organize and problem solve during entire course of a project.


Core Function and Responsibilities:

  • Participate in project’s creative development including blue sky brainstorming, project kick-offs, internal reviews and other project specific check-ins
  • Develop and/or execute special effects designs for live shows and facility infrastructure when required
  • Direct the Special Effects Designers’ plan and execution for new shows and remounts
  • Be an engaged leader of special effects technology research and development efforts participating as necessary with other Company technology divisions
  • Partner in design scope development and staffing to ensure assignments are “right fit” and that the needs of the projects will be creatively satisfied
  • Provide creative and feasibility input to show concept; review and approve project special effects budgets and labor requirements
  • Act as liaison for Special Effects/Pyrotechnics Designers and vendors ensuring Disney quality, compatibility, training and proper documentation of all special effects services delivered
  • Be a resource to maintain the proper training of operating area special effects/pyrotechnics Technicians
  • Direct on-going “Entertainment Show Quality” evaluations of existing offerings at Walt Disney World and provide support to maintain their original show intent
  • Maintain a strong relationship with fireworks compound, safety, purchasing, vendors and interface with governmental agencies in approving/permitting effects uses by Walt Disney World
  • Demonstrate commitment to both on-going personal and departmental education for Walt Disney World and industry standards
  • Maintain up-to-date show documentation, special effects R&D lab and talent/industry contact database

Leadership Skills:

  • Effectively orchestrate activities and team dynamics
  • Persuasive advocate for good design and a steadying influence for the team
  • Natural collaborative ability to make sense out of diverse multidisciplinary requirements and to bring the project goals into focus for everyone involved
  • Working member of the Design team with a natural inclination to generate ideas and the ability to do so with great fluency
  • Ability to research and present design options so that the team can make informed decisions that ultimately give the project greater depth

Basic Qualifications

  • Minimum of 7 years of experience in the Entertainment Industry working in show development and operation of live shows
  • Strong understanding of current technology and industry standards for all aspects of special effects and pyrotechnics design, (theatrical, industrial, concert, touring, etc.) as applied to live show and facility systems
  • Proven ability to support the creative process by collaborating with other Designers, Directors, Writers and Producers
  • Strong understanding and experience in contract negotiations for Consultants to develop scope and value
  • Extensive knowledge of industry standards and regulations (NFPA 1123, 1126, 160 APA 87-1)
  • Experience with facility design, engineering and construction
  • Proven ability to deliver on a project’s established scope, schedule and budget
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills with the ability to express creative ideas
  • Ability to work flexible hours - nights, weekends and holidays - including occasional travel
  • General computer skills including basic Microsoft Office products and industry specific software

Preferred Qualifications

  • Experience in live show development with The Walt Disney Company
  • Working knowledge and understanding of the Walt Disney culture
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Article Posted: Mar 27, 2021 / 9:57am ET
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topdad10 days ago

topdad10 days ago

Grucviy displays are amazing. But very fast paced and aggressive. I love that at certain times. a Disney fireworks show has much more artistry that is usually seen at international fireworks competitions.

gerarar12 days ago

Interesting enough, when Disney Parks (on their YT channel) posted their mini-documentary of the making of Happily Ever After, the pyrotechnics team/leader never got featured or interviewed. They were only just briefly mentioned that they’ve been hard at work and collaborating with the animation team(s). Here’s the full collection, notice they have one for every major aspect of the show like music, animation, projections, recording, but not the fireworks. Only really featured in the last one which was the overview of the show of all aspects. Maybe Disney will make a similar series for Harmonius and heavily feature this new person they’re recruiting.

M:SpilotISTC1212 days ago

Good to see they need to know Microsoft Office! That'll help make sparks fly. :p

JIMINYCR13 days ago

I would love to see a Disney fireworks display again. Its been so long since we were awed by the lengthy show. Ever since seeing my first MK one years ago, its been a highlight of our stays. Nothing around home comes close and theres no comparison.

Walt d14 days ago

He got a flat tire”

Skywise14 days ago

What happened to the original fireworks guy?

Walt d14 days ago

Come on” thats me! It really is! I love blowing things up” can we talk about possibly blowing part of the castle up, on the night of the 50th come on no one will expect that they’ll talk about this show for years. And we could shoot fireworks all over the parks. No one has ever done that! Im ready lets get the rockets in the sky. Sign me up Bobby igor!!!! Lets do this!

mnelson314 days ago

True. Would make way more sense for them to promote someone within WDW or bring in someone from DL or another Disney park overseas that already has experience.

mm5220014 days ago

Or this is a position that just recently opened, will most likely be filled internally but still has to be posted regardless. Same thing just happened with the Epcot VP. I wouldn’t read into this as much as you are.

mnelson314 days ago

Best night of the year at WS with each country’s dance party. My personal favorite being Italy 🙂

jt0414 days ago

Perfect. Everything they are doing in the central plaza seems like event space. Epcot would benefit greatly by adding such events. IMO.

TrainChasers14 days ago

Only times I remember ROE running that late was for New Years Eve.

jrhwdw14 days ago

If designing HEA 50th and Harm all this job is....that makes sence. On the other hand if COVID allows it earlier than 10/1(please?) I would think TDO would just keep F!/HEA 2017/maybe EF?????? going till the 50th/Harm stuff is ready? Even if the teams misses 10/1? We had Desert Parties. Maybe they need to be completely after hours with a special showing? I know ROE ran at 11:30 a few nights. I don't remember what for?