Blackout Brings Mistletoe Magic to Covent Garden
Drapes and rigging expert, Blackout, has helped transform Covent Garden Market into a stunning Christmas wonderland through the installation of over 42 giant hanging mistletoe chandeliers, November 2015.
For the past five years, Blackout has rigged the renowned bauble decorations which are famously hung from the glass roofs of the markets two main isles within Covent Garden.
The decorations, produced and managed by production company Sculptivate, were redesigned for Christmas 2015 and the traditional baubles were replaced with over 40 large stems of mistletoes.
There are two sizes of mistletoe, the smaller is 2.5m and weighs 90kg, the larger is 3.5m and weighs 110kg, along with 60kg mirror balls.
In addition, the mistletoes are decorated with nearly 700 glowing berries, which transform each sprig of mistletoe into an impressive hanging chandelier.
Over 320 metres of garlands unite the chandeliers and around 100,000 pealights are suspended within the historic Market Building, whose world famous Piazza once again hosts London’s biggest hand-picked Christmas tree.
The mistletoe was unveiled at The Covent Garden Christmas Light Switch On, where the new arrangement was illuminated for the first time in front of hundreds of visitors, on the 12th November 2015.
This event also marked the launch of London’s first Mulled Wine Festival, which took place alongside musical performances, illuminations and festive cheer.
Blackout’s project manager Tom Lambert oversaw the team of riggers. He comments: “We’ve been working on Covent Garden since 2010 and we’re always proud to get the chance to be part of such a brilliantly festive event.
This year’s mistletoe design presented new challenges, in particular because the mistletoe doesn’t have an even shape, it was much more important to ensure they were all hanging correctly and facing in the same direction. This meant that each mistletoe had to be lifted as vertically as possible before being manoeuvred into its position.
“As with previous years, there are a number of catenaries running through the bottom of each mistletoe, to keep them in place and prevent them from twisting in the wind. As always, Covent Garden looks magical and we hope they help spread some festive cheer this Christmas.”
This new decoration scheme, ‘Meet Me Under the Mistletoe’, was created by celebrated production designer Michael Howells, who is well-known for designing fashion shows for the likes of Alexander McQueen, and collaborated with luxury megabrands including Louis Vuitton and Christian Dior.
The Mistletoe can be seen in Covent Garden until January 2016.