The Making of Live at Pompeii

Live at Pompeii is a concert film by the British rock band Pink Floyd, released in 1972. It documents the band’s performance at the ancient Roman amphitheatre in Pompeii, Italy, in October 1971. The film was directed by Adrian Maben, who had previously worked with the band on their 1969 album Ummagumma.

Live At Pompeii - Floydology Store
Live At Pompeii

Filming Process

The idea of filming a concert in Pompeii came from Maben, who was fascinated by the history and acoustics of the site. He wanted to capture the contrast between the ancient ruins and the modern music, as well as the band’s creative process in the studio. He approached the band with his proposal, and they agreed to participate, as they were looking for a new way to present their music to the public.

The film was shot over four days, from 4 to 7 October 1971. The band performed without an audience, except for a few local children and some members of the film crew. They played a selection of songs from their albums Meddle, Atom Heart Mother, and A Saucerful of Secrets, as well as some unreleased material. The film also includes footage of the band working on their next album, The Dark Side of the Moon, at Abbey Road Studios in London.

The film was edited by Maben and Nino Di Fonzo, who used a variety of techniques to create a dynamic and psychedelic visual style. They used multiple cameras, zooms, slow motion, split screens, and superimpositions to enhance the musical performance and create a sense of movement and space. They also added some special effects, such as solarization, color filters, and animation, to create a surreal and artistic atmosphere.

Premiere and Reception of the Film

The film was premiered at the Edinburgh Film Festival in September 1972, and received positive reviews from critics and fans alike. It was praised for its innovative and experimental approach to concert filmmaking, as well as for its stunning cinematography and sound quality. The film was also released in cinemas around the world, and later on home video formats. It has since become a cult classic among Pink Floyd fans and music lovers in general.

Unforgettable Performance at Pompeii

Live at Pompeii is a unique and memorable document of one of the most influential and creative bands in rock history. It showcases their musical talent, artistic vision, and cultural impact in a way that no other film has done before or since. It is a testament to the power and beauty of music, and to the timeless appeal of Pink Floyd.

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