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Shiny Disco Ball ♫

The "Disco" Ball existed before the Disco Era?


What are now called "disco balls" were first used in nightclubs in the 1920's.

An early example can be seen in the nightclub sequence of Berlin in a German silent film from 1927: ’Die Sinfonie der Großstadt’.


The disco mirror ball, disco ball, mirror ball, or ball of mirrors is a roughly spherical object that reflects the light directed at it in many directions, producing a unique and complex display of light.


The surface of a disco ball has hundreds of facets, with several geometrical shapes.

The ball works best if it is suspended on an axis, allowing it to rotate.


Rumor has it that watching the disco ball was entrancing, especially for those under the influence of drugs.


A disco ball is an American icon..

..representing the disco era of the 1970’s and 1990’s. In the 1970s, these devices were a standard accompaniment to disco music, and by the end of the 20th century, the name "disco ball" had largely eclipsed the earlier names that had been applied to the object.


Miniature disco balls are sold as novelties and used for a number of decorative purposes, including dangling from the rear-view mirror of an automobile.


With the appearance of infrared networks, disco balls have found a new application, as a method of dispersing the infrared signals.


Interestingly enough, 90% of disco balls made today are manufactured in Louisville, Kentucky.


The world's largest rotating disco ball is situated in the ABC Nightclub in Glasgow, Scotland: www.physics.gla.ac.uk/~amoodie/photos/random2.jpg


Pink Floyd used the largest disco ball in a concert on their 1987 and 1994 world tours.

The disco ball used on the 1987 Pink Floyd tour was somewhat larger than normal but nowhere near as large as the disco ball used on the 1994 tour.

That particular disco ball in the 1994 Pink Floyd tour is one of the largest in the world. 4.9 metres in diameter, it rises to a height of 21.3 metres before opening to a width of 7.3 metres, revealing a 12 kilowatt Phobeus HMI lamp. Both can be seen on the video of each tour: "Delicate Sound of Thunder" and "P*U*L*S*E" during the song Comfortably Numb.


Disco balls in architectural design:


The TV Tower Berlin has an observation deck in the form of a huge disco ball: www.bilderbook.org/berlin/tv_tower/pictures/

This deck is 6 ½ miles off the ground. There are 986 steps leading to it.


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Fun Facts


"Disco" means "I learn" in Latin.



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Taken on April 29, 2007