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Laser F/X On-line Newsletter - Special Reports

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Urström at the 1999 Stockholm Water Festival



Stadshuset is the Swedish name for the Stockholm City Hall

    Stadshuset is the Swedish name for the Stockholm City Hall. A beautiful building that occupies one end of one of the islands that make up downtown Stockholm. We paid 40 SEK each (about $4.85 US$) for the guided tour. Tours are available in a number of languages. This building is most well known as the site of the annual Nobel Prize dinner and festivities.

City Hall main tower smaller domed tower
City Hall main tower and a smaller domed tower.

    This is the working City Hall of Stockholm where politicians and civil servants can be glimpsed in the corridors. The central hall where the Nobel dinner is held contains one of Europe's largest pipe organs with over 15,000 pipes, The hall is also wider at one end than the other although nobody knows if this was intentionally done by the architect or was an accident of construction.

The central hall where the Nobel dinner is held

View of the main hall
Views of the main hall where the annual Nobel Prize festivities are held.

The author at the Nobel prize podium
The author at the Nobel prize podium
- Photo by Arvid

    Upstairs, the ornate Stockholm council chambers have open rafters with a night sky painted on the ceiling above them. This is representative of the wooden 'ribs' of a Viking boat so it is as if the council meets each time under an overturned boat.

The ornate council chamber council chamber 'Viking' ceiling.
The ornate council chamber and it's 'Viking' ceiling.

    There are many beautiful hallways with tall windows and alcoves overlooking the city and waters of Stockholm. Some provided an excellent view of the Water Festival fountain.

Tall window overlooking the city and waters of Stockholm alcove overlooking the city

    The ornate "French room" is the only room that contains no Swedish materials since it was designed and built around a gift of French tapestries. This is also the room where civil marriages take place and our guide informed us that there are two versions of the ceremony, the long version lasting 4 minutes and the short version lasting 90 seconds!

Ornate tapestries line the walls of the French room
Ornate tapestries line the walls of the French room.

    The group moved on to the "blue room" which is very well known as it is the room where the Nobel prize winners are interviewed and the frescoes are often seen in the background of the photographs or TV broadcasts.

The "blue room"
The "blue room".

    The last room is the 'gold room' elaborately decorated with mosaics depicting some of the history of Sweden and Stockholm. The background mosaics contain 23 carat gold. One end of the room is dominated by a huge image of a woman who represents a symbol of peace. She sits between figures representing the eastern and western worlds. When this room was completed in 1923, there was considerably controversy over this image proving that the Swedes love to criticize their public art!

The "gold room"
The "gold room".

    After the tour ended, we took a stroll around the grounds and the beautifully manicured gardens of the City Hall.

The Gardens The Gardens & Tower

Quick Links to Report Pages

Stockholm Water Festival Report - Introduction
Sweden and Stockholm - Background and general information
The Site - Orientation to the show area and the challenges it presented
The Crew - The people who put it all together
Tech Specs - The equipment used in the presentation
The Music - An interview with the composer and MP3 file of the soundtrack
Smoke on the water - Covering a lake with smoke for beam effects
The Show - A description with many pictures
Animated Gifs - Gifs showing Palace projections and climatic beam effects
Stadshuset - Stockholm City Hall tour (very large page)
Show Diary - Day-to-day coverage of the trials and triumphs


DISCLAIMER: Some of the information in the Backstage area is provided by the persons or companies named on the relevant page(s). Laser F/X does NOT endorse or recommend any products/services and is NOT responsible for the technical accuracy of the information provided.  We provide this information as a service to laserists using the Backstage area. 

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