An astronaut waves goodbye during the end of one of the laser shows' segments. Photos by Amelia Tarallo
By Amelia Tarallo
Hometown Weekly Staff
On Monday, June 24, parents and their kids came to the Needham library to see a laser show. Fitting perfectly into the 2019 summer reading program’s theme of “A Universe of Stories,” the performance focused on the history of space travel, scientific discoveries, and popular space-themed stories and tropes.
The show began with a quick introduction to the early history of astronomy. In just minutes, the narrator covered the famous discoveries of Copernicus and Galileo. Moments later, the lasers began to swirl to represent the rotating planets in our solar system.Continuing on with a history lesson of space, the show shifted its focus onto to “American Space Journey.” Kids watched as colorful twirling beams depicted the moon landing, paying close attention to the laser rocket blasting off. As the show moved from point to point, covering more recent discoveries and trips to space, the narrator reminded the audiences that space travel is nowhere near finished: “The future is in your hands - to Mars and beyond.”
Seconds later, “The Big Bang Theory Song,” by the Barenaked Ladies began playing as the lasers depicted images to match the lyrics. The audience was treated to a psychedelic display, with stars dancing on the ceiling and the lasers shooting off to the fast-paced song.When the “Star Wars” theme began, there were a few cheers and chuckles. With the famous title sequence beginning, the entire room became quiet, paying as much attention as they would in the theater. Kids began giggling at appearance of a laser-rendered R2-D2. The battle between a TIE fighter and its opponent was just as action-packed as a scene from the movies. The conclusion of the scene came with the inevitable destruction of the Death Star.
Perhaps everyone’s favorite part was the show’s finale song-mix portion, which included a plethora of pop songs, like Camila Cabello’s “Havana,” and Ariana Grande’s “Thank U, Next.” Everyone sang along to chart-topper “Old Town Road,” by Lil Nas X. A throwback to the “What Does the Fox Say?” surprised everyone, though it had even the youngest of audience members singing along, adding their own personal sound effects to the show.
With the show finished and many audience members inspired, several of the kids dashed off to the children’s section of the library to find a book to borrow all about space or lasers. With a great start to summer, there’s no telling what these kids are going to learn while celebrating a “Universe of Stories.”