Iceland is a powerful place. It's extreme. It can be unexpected. And it's a place with a rich history of storytelling.
This storytelling heritage is the essence of FlyOver Iceland, which will be opening in Reykjavik in the spring. Coupled with the thrilling flight-ride is an exciting 'preshow' space designed by renowned multimedia and design studio Moment Factory. It promises to be rich and provocative in helping tell the story of Iceland.
Since the spring of 2018, Moment Factory has been working on developing two unique multi-sensory spaces that will form the 'preshow' at FlyOver Iceland and will compliment the thrill of the flight-ride. Together, these rooms will form an introductory experience that'll build anticipation and contribute to the overall experience of the ride. Think lights, sounds, 2D and 3D characters—in both live action and animated formats—and a feast for the senses. It's a blend of architecture, design, immersion technology and stories—truly one of a kind and unlike anything Iceland has seen before.
From Vancouver to Reykjavik
Partnering with Moment Factory is always exciting. Their UpLift! show, the preshow at FlyOver Canada, is a scene-stealer that visitors love.
"It's an honour to be creating an immersive experience for FlyOver Iceland and collaborating again with Pursuit," says Moment Factory's Stephane Raymond.
Moment Factory has created more than 400 unique shows and multimedia experiences around the world, including rock concerts for Jay Z, Madonna and the Red Hot Chili Peppers, illuminations of landmarks like the Jacques Cartier bridge in Montreal and the launch of the Vodafone McLaren Formula One team. They've worked with clients like the Los Angeles Airport, Microsoft, NFL, Sony, Toyota, the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona and Royal Caribbean.
Photo: The Moment Factory team working on FlyOver Canada's UpLift! experience.
Moment Factory starts with "ideation." Raymond's team travelled to Iceland to explore the rich history, meet the locals, forge friendships with tour guides and research Iceland's deep heritage of storytelling.
"Discovering and illustrating Iceland in an unconventional way is amazing," he says. "Visiting Iceland was key. Being there, meeting the people—that's essential."
Back in the studio in Montreal, they continued with research and reading. Raymond says a giant pile of books about Iceland also helped.
Then, they began honing in on the concept and translating it into images that are emotional and provocative. And that are true to Iceland's realities.
"We need to provide a sense of Icelandic culture, the attitude and humour of the people, in the space we're creating," Raymond explains.
Photo: (From left) The Moment Factory team of Stephane Raymon, Alexandre Lupien and Julien Demers-Arseneault tour an historic Icelandic church.
True to Place
Raymond says his team has completed the 8-week design phase and is now working on the production details in order to deliver and create in real time come springtime. Moment Factory's experts in scenography and interactive exchanges have joined to help explore how viewers and guests can go deeper into the epic and incredible story of Iceland that'll be presented "in a micro way."
With the vast landscapes and deep sense of history that makes Iceland so appealing to travellers, it'll be an immersive experience into what Raymond calls "a land that feels mystical."
The focus, always, is being unconventional yet authentic.
"We want to stay true to Iceland and Icelandic people," he says. "We need to make sure that Icelandic people feel proud about what we are creating."
And that's why it's all about storytelling. Thanks to the talented team from Moment Factory, this version of the story of Iceland will be truly one-of-a-kind.