On December 10th, the stage of the Gracie Theatre came alight as Atlas Pyrovision, a professional pyrotechnics company from New Hampshire shot off numerous close-proximity effects for NESCom’s
Entertainment Production Worksite Safety Class. Close proximity pyrotechnical displays can be seen in a wide variety of events, ranging from larger venues, such as Disney World and the Olympics to more common presentations, such as fashion shows and smaller music performances. This mandates that technicians working in the entertainment industry understand the regulations and hazards inherent in such displays.
Ken Stack explains why this was such an important event: “Students in this course are exposed to the safe practices demanded by this industry. Proper tool safety, rigging, material handling, genie lift training, OSHA 10 hour certification, and now a pyrotechnical demonstration are all part of the course curriculum. This kind of event emphasizes NESCom’s commitment to career-oriented experiences for students that will make them competitors in the professional entertainment world”.
Matthew Shea, from Atlas, talked the students through the complex and rigorous procedures, policies and regulations that must be in place for any sort of pyro or flame effects used onstage. Worksite Safety instructor, Brave Williams, put together a multi-faceted team to
make this event happen in the Gracie. Matthew Shea and Atlas Pyrovision are licensed leaders in the field of pyrotechnic displays and fireworks, working throughout New England and beyond. Also present were three representatives from the Maine State Fire Marshall’s Office, Hector Cyr, Edward Archer and Robert Manning. They explained the permitting processes that are required for pyrotechnical displays,<
and were on hand to inspect each piece of equipment. Officers from Bangor Fire Department Station #6 were present, using this demonstration as a training exercise as well. From the Husson campus, Bob Kilpeck (Director of Campus Safety and Security), John Rubino (Vice President of Administration), Thom Johnston (President, NESCom), Craig Hadley (Husson CFO), Lew McEacharn (Husson Maintenance) and Ken Stack (Director of Entertainment Production) all helped to coordinate this demonstration. Over fifteen people worked in coordination to create 15 pyrotechnical “shoots” in the Gracie.
Photos by Larry Ayotte