WHAT: MALTA MECHANISED GROUND FIREWORKS FESTIVAL 2019 WHY: MECHANISED FIREWORK FESTIVAL WHERE: ST PUBLIUS SQUARE, MALTA WHEN: SATURDAY 4TH MAY 2019
The Mechanised Fireworks, known locally as Nar tal’Art, are unique to Malta and form an important part of the celebrations for their saint days.
Teams from the myriad of firework producers on the Island each create their own incredible mechanized display which takes the better part of a year to complete. The event is one of a kind, bringing together beautiful pyrotechnics and mechanics which are fascinating. These intricate constructions twist, turn and create spectacular shapes and images using a series of chains and gears called Katina.
This year, the event closes the celebrations for the Feast of the Cross and St Augustine’s in Valetta. The mechanised fireworks are set out in St Publius Square in Floriana, Malta in the foreground of the magnificent Parish Church.
St Publius Church was built in the 17th Century and is neoclassical in design. Sadly, the façade of the church was extensively damaged during bombing attacks during WW2 which was eventually repaired in the late 1950s.
The Island has proof of inhabitation however from as early as 5000 BC and there are numerous Megalithic stone structures across the island which are thought to be the oldest stone structures in the World.
If you are in the area, you may also like to take the opportunity to see several firework displays on the night prior to the final competition night for the 18th edition of the Malta International Fireworks Festival. Get along if you are fortunate enough to be over in Malta to take in the sight of a sky full of pyrotechnics and the intricacies of the mechanical fireworks for yourself.
WHAT: MALTA MECHANIZED GROUND FIREWORKS FESTIVAL WHEN: SATURDAY 9TH APRIL 2016 (SETUP OF THE DISPLAY ON FRIDAY 8TH APRIL 2016) WHERE: THE GRANARIES, ST PUBLIUS SQUARE, MALTA WHY: MECHANICAL FIREWORKS FESTIVAL COST: FREE 🙂
The mechanized ground fireworks festival has been an important part of the Fiesta celebrations to be held in Malta.
The competition between the factories has always been fierce and it is a matter of intense pride to win the award for your own factory resulting in the competitors striving for excellence every time.
The setting up of the Fest Ta Nar (fire festival) takes the majority of the day to complete as in addition to the usual set up of the fireworks there is a great deal more intricate and complicated parts to ensure are in working order and are connected to the relevant effect. The maximum dimension of the wheel must be no more than 30 feet across. They are a complex fusion of levels, gears, wheels, chains and links resulting in 3D movement with the ability to open and close, rotate and move forth and back too with added pyrotechnics.
The Firework factories included in this year’s event are as follows:
St Margaret’s Firework Association 15th August Fireworks Association Our Lady of Nativity Fireworks Association Fontana Fireworks Association St Paul’s Fireworks Complex St Josephs Firework Complex 22 February Fireworks Association Mount Carmel Factory St Catherine’s Pyrotechnic Association St Bartholomew’s Fireworks Association St Leonard’s Firework Factory 15th August Fireworks Factory
There are 30 firework companies on the Island and pyro remains at the very heart of the people of Malta and have been since the very early part of the 11th century when they were intrinsic to celebrations. For the most part there would have used cannon and musket fire and the sound of the explosion of crackers in quick succession as an expression of joy/celebration and over the years this grew into an event which now include the ‘Malta International Firework Festival‘, a competition which takes place each Saturday including 9th, 16th, 23rd and 30th April 2016 in a number of locations across the Island.
Here is a taster of some of last year’s examples of engineering and pyrotechnics coming together to create beautiful effects.
All participants in the 2013 Mechanical Ground Fireworks festival in Floriana, Malta is locally known as “Nar ta’ l-Art”, have been told that the firework flames MUST be contained to avoid any further accidents.
Ground fireworks are a unique Maltese pyrotechnic tradition, and since the festival will be held on the eve of Floriana’s Parish Feast, those who attend the festival will also get a taste of the lavish local festivities which are a hallmark of Maltese Fiestas. The Festival will be held in the largest square in Malta.
In 2009, a young man was injured when a flame from a misfired Catherine wheel hit him in the face. However, event organisers have assured the public that every safety measure will be taken to ensure crowd safety by keeping them at a safe distance.
The new regulations state that the displays must be built in a way that ensures that flares from fireworks will not be emitted outwards.
The 2013 Festival, being held in April will feature competing teams from around the World and will last around an hour and a half. Each team will present 2 displays in the hope of becoming Mechanical Champions.
There will also be a unique situation when 25% of the score will be allotted by representatives of the competing teams themselves and the remainder of the score will be established by the panel of experts from around the World.
I am sure that if there is sufficient distance between the action and the crowd that there will be little chance of injury being sustained again and this remains a free event which can be enjoyed by all the family.
The categories for the competition include the best use of gears/chains and least used, originality, best mechanism and best products.