Liverpool’s waterfront will be seen in a new light when the city celebrates the 175th anniversary of Cunard in May.
Plans are underway to mark what is being described as the most spectacular ever gathering of Cunard’s Three Queens when they sail in to their spiritual home and meet on the Mersey on Monday 25 May.
Activities will take place across the weekend (from 23 to 25 May) to entertain the hundreds of thousands of people expected to descend on the city for this potentially once in a lifetime experience.
As part of the programme, state-of-the-art projections are set to bring to life some of the city’s iconic waterfront buildings. The content is still in development, however as part of the three night show, there will be an element called Sea of Faces which will result in hundreds of faces of people who live in, work in, play in or just love Liverpool beamed on to the buildings.
An announcement will be made in the spring about how people can get involved with this exciting feature.
The Colour Project is the company behind the projections and has the reputation of being one of the country’s leading video mapping and design companies. Along with the city council, they will also be working closely with Liverpool arts organisation Hope Street Limited to produce the showcase.
Assistant Mayor and Cabinet Member for culture and tourism, Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “In every sense of the word, we had a giant year last year in terms of our event programme, and Liverpool is maintaining that momentum as we prepare for yet another momentous year for the city.
“There’s still five months to go before the three monarchs of the sea head for the River Mersey, and yet there is already an air of excitement about their arrival, not just in the city but across the UK and the rest of the world.
“It’s rare for the three vessels to be in the same place at the same time, but it will be the first time the Queens will converge on our majestic waterfront and it’s guaranteed to be the Kodak moment of 2015.
“As with all the events we stage, we want to make sure there are things for people to see and do across the weekend and it’s great news we are working with such a creative and technically advanced partner such as The Colour Project.
“Their work will light up one of the most recognisable waterfronts in the world and will add another dimension to what is set to be an unforgettable weekend.”
Carl Miller from The Colour Project, said: “This event will transform the rich waterfront canvas into an exciting and engaging visual display and provide a fitting punctuation to this momentous occasion. This is a great opportunity to explore the spirit of Liverpool, its heritage and culture along with highlights from the extensive history of Cunard. We are delighted to be working with Liverpool City Council and Hope Street to create this unique celebration.”
The Three Queens weekend kick-starts the six-week One Magnificent City programme, which culminates in July with a weekend of events directed by acclaimed designer Wayne Hemingway.
This weekend (with 4 July being the key date) marks the first transatlantic voyage of Britannia back in 1840 and so a series of activities will celebrate the glamour and excitement of cruise travel looking at everything from fashion to food, involving everyone from schoolchildren and residents through to businesses and retailers in Liverpool.
Details of the programme will be announced in the near future.
Cunard Director Angus Struthers said: “We have been delighted by the intense interest, sense of pride and positive feeling in Liverpool for Cunard and its 175th anniversary next year.
“We are looking forward to celebrating with the city when the Three Queens sail into the Mersey for the very first time next May and welcome the plans to complement the spectacular arrival of the Cunard fleet with activities ashore. 2015 looks to be a very exciting year for Cunard and Liverpool, its spiritual home.”