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| Cunard Queen Elizabeth 2015 - 2016
Christmas and New Year Cruise - Part 6
After an excellent formal New Years Eve meal and the traditional New Years Eve Chocolate Buffet Extravaganza it was soon time to go to the back deck to celebrate. This year the visiting ships took part in a special cruise ship horn concert as a prelude to Madeira's spectacular New Year's Eve fireworks display. Each vessel's horn has its own frequency and tuning, equivalent to musical notes. A local composer stood at Funchal harbour's tower and, through radio connection to all the ships Bridges, directed a crew musician on each of the nine cruise ships with the rhythm beat, in order to synchronise all the ships' whistles with the score. The 10-minute concert, organised by the Madeira Regional Government, was centred around a musical score entitled "2015 Cruise Ships Horn Symphony", composed by Francisco Loreto. The melody was specifically created for the nine ships to play : Black Watch, Magellan, Marco Polo, P&O Oceana, Queen Elizabeth, Thomson Majesty, AIDAblu, AIDAsol, and Mein Schiff 4. Saga Pearl II also joined in. It started late and we were told that Thomson Majesty could not lead because she had lost her radio connection, so it was led by the Queen Elizabeth. The video can be watched at https://www.worldofcruising.co.uk/cruise-ship-horn-concert/ (accessed 11 January 2016).
The Madeira fireworks are some of the largest in the world with up to 16 tons of fireworks covering a 7 km sweep over Funchal and round the whole bay. We were perfectly positioned just in front of the launching barges and the weather was kind.
Pictures can not do justice to the scale of the fireworks so, for the first time, ever we have decided to add a video to one of our travelogues. It is hosted on Youtube and is in HD (1280x720p) so can be run full screen. If you are mobile or bandwidth challenged even looking at a short stretch will show the scale of the display.