October 27, 2017

Choreo helps pay tribute to a great Canadian, 
Gord Downie of the Tragically Hip

WinnipegSign Oct2017 article

Pathway is honoured to be a part of the City of Winnipeg's (sometimes called "The Paris of the Prairies") tribute to Gord Downie, beloved frontman of the rock band The Tragically Hip, who passed away on October 17, 2017.

The 2.5 meter (8.2 feet) high LED-illuminated sign was installed in July, 2017 and is controlled by a Choreo Architectural Lighting Controller. From its installation until to the unfortunate date of Gord Downie's passing, the sign was simply lit in white. 

On that day, Jason Fuith of the City of Winnipeg Mayor's office, contacted Pathway for help in programming a tribute to the late singer and lyricist using the sign.

As Robert Bell, Director of Product Innovation at Pathway explains, "I was able to talk Jason, who has never controlled a theatrical device in his life, through using Choreo's 'Select/Control/Record/Play' task-oriented navigation. In no time flat, we had the look and sequence programmed and helped pay tribute to a great Canadian."

The sign remained lit in the red-and-white design seen above, using the colours of the Canadian flag, for a week. The sign then faded to black, as seen in the Instagram video posted by the mayor of Winnipeg, Brian Bowman.

Nearly all Canadians know and love Gord and the The Tragically Hip. For those not as familiar, Gord and "The Hip" were widely loved in Canada, and around the world, for their intelligent and poetic lyrics and songs which were full of Canadian history and culture. Many Canadians identified with the songs, and the band became synonymous with "being Canadian". He was celebrated not only for his music that touched and influenced many, but for his humble, generous personality, and his environmentalism and philanthropic work.

His unfortunate passing was widely mourned in Canada, with several Canadian celebrities offering tributes on social media. National Hockey League teams observed a minute of silence before games; and other city Mayors, politicians, and even the Prime Minister issued statements. Several radio stations played The Tragically Hip exclusively for the day, with some temporarily re-branding themselves as "Gord FM". 

Pathway is honoured to be able to help the City of Winnipeg in paying tribute to this great Canadian.