Show hardware

Show hardware

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IllumiNations was the fourth generation of night-time spectaculars at Epcot.

The first was Carnival de Lumiere, a presentation using rear projection screens on barges floating on the World Showcase Lagoon. Between the projection barges were fountain/fireworks barges controlled by Apple Computers. The show could be viewed only from points between Mexico and Canada.

The first summer of Epcot brought A New World Fantasy. It had the same equipment configuration as Carnival de Lumiere, but had a new story line. It also introduced the Pichel lights and began the process of automating the movement of the Pichel lights. 

Laserphonic Fantasy opened in the summer of 1984 and brought a new dimension to Epcot. The show could be viewed from all around the lagoon and featured synthesized music. The projection barges were abandoned and the fountain and fireworks barges were arranged around a central barge containing lighting effects, fog effects, and lasers. Laser projection booths were installed at Canada, Mexico, and American Adventure. The automation of the Pichel lights was completed and added to the show. Later, small fireworks barges and seawall fireworks were added to expand the show.

IllumiNations expanded the scope of the show and opened in January of 1988. It added lighting effects to the pavilions of World Showcase and the music was re-arranged and re-recorded using members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. The fountains, fireworks, and lasers were re-cued, and new pyro product was added along with the pavilion lighting. The computer systems were revamped to handle the information necessary to operate IllumiNations.

The final upgrade to IllumiNations came in 1994-96 when new laser computer systems were added to the all the laser booths, the Laser Barge lasers were replaced with new white light lasers and the 2K Pichel lights were replaced by 7K Syncrolites. These enhancements were in preparation for Holiday IllumiNations in 1994 and finally IllumiNations25 in 1996. 

IllumiNations25 was comprised of the same components as IllumiNations but added four more fireworks barges, a new story line, new music, and all new programming. IllumiNations continues to grow and changes in the future will help to keep it the ultimate night-time spectacular that it has come to be known as.


Opening Date
January 30 1988

IllumiNations Show Hardware
  • 25 computers
  • 13 special effects projectors
  • 6 lasers
  • 11 searchlights
  • 12 huge wire mesh screens to project effects onto
  • 108 fountains
  • 783 pyrotechnic pieces
  • 550 theatrical lights
  • 680 strobe lights
  • 5 miles of building outlining lights
  • 50,000 light bulbs

Click here for photos of the show hardware and a unique look inside the laser booths.

IllumiNations Music List


Custom Epcot Fanfare Music

First Movement

Symphony #5, Movement #1 - Beethoven

Flight of the Bumblebee, from "Tale of the Tsar Sultan" - Nicholas Rimsky-Korsakov

Zampa Overture, First Theme - Louis Herold

Italian Concerto, Movement #3, First Theme - J.S. Bach

William Tell Overture, Second Theme - Gioacchina Rossini

Second Movement

Scheherezade - Nicholas Rimsky-Korsakov

La Vie Parisienne - Offenbach (France)

Days of Emancipation - Unknown (China)

Rule Britannia - Wagner (United Kingdom)

Tales of the Vienna Woods - Strauss (Germany)

Sakura - Unknown (Japan)

Espana Cani - Marquina (Mexico)

French Canadian Jig - Traditional (Canada)

Funiculi, Funicula - Denza (Italy)

Rhapsody in Blue - Gershwin (United States)

Custom Segue

Third Movement

Carnival Overture, Opus 92, First Theme - Antonin Dvorak

March of the Toreadors, from the operal "Carmen," Prelude to Act 1 - Georges Bizet

Alla Hornpipe, from the Water Music Suite, Movement #13 - George Fredrick Handel

Titan Symphony, Symphony #1 in D Major, Movement #1 - Gustav Mahler

Symphony #9 "Choral," Movement #4, "Ode to Joy" - Beethoven

Prelude to Act 3, "Lohengrin" - Richard Wagner

Firebird Suite, finale - Igor Stravinsky

Great Gate of Kiev, from "Pictures at an Exhibition" - Modest Mussorgsky

Promenade, from "Pictures at an Exhibition" - Modest Mussorgsky

1812 Festival Overture, Second Theme - Peter Ilyich Tschaikovsky


Arranged by Steve Skorija and performed by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra

Holiday IllumiNations Music List

Opening Medley

Angels We Have Heard on High

Deck the Halls With Boughs of Holly

Hark the Herald Angels Sing

Joy to the World

0 Come All Ye Faithful

Chanukah Medley


The Trees in the Field

Let There Be Peace on Earth

Nutcracker Medley

Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairies


Russian Dance (Trepak)

0 Holy Night

Music After Main Show

Joy to the World

What Child Is This