The Last Judgement Workshop: JCU Welcomes Nicola Sapio of Artainment

On September 10, 2019, the JCU Institute for Entrepreneurship and the Center for Career Services invited Nicola Sapio, Communication & Marketing Director of Artainment Worldwide Shows, to be the guest speaker at “The Last Judgement Workshop – The Sistine Chapel Immersive Show.” The workshop, held in the context of Professor Antonella Salvatore’s MKT 302 Service Marketing class and Professor Silvia Pulino’s BUS 305 Introduction to Entrepreneurship class, focused on the creation process, the technological innovation, the marketing strategy, and the creative effort of Giudizio Universale – The Sistine Chapel Immersive Show.

Nicola Sapio, Giudizio Universale

Nicola Sapio, Giudizio Universale

Artainment is part of the Worldwide Shows Corporation, which focuses on spectacular ceremonies, such as the Olympics, innovative projects like the Tree of Life displayed in Expo Milano, and immersive experiences, such as Giudizio Universale.

Giudizio Universale – The Sistine Chapel Immersive Show had its debut on March 15, 2018 at the Auditorium della Conciliazione, near St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican. Under the supervision of the Vatican Museums, Giudizio Universale takes the audience on a journey through time. The 60-minute show is composed of four acts, called Michelangelo and Beauty, The Most Famous Story in the World, The Conclave and The Last Judgement. In the first act, the audience is transported to a cave in Carrara, where Michelangelo is depicted looking for marble for his famous sculpture David. Then, the show moves inside the Sistine Chapel and shows how it looked like before Michelangelo’s frescoes. The third act shows St. Peter’s Square after papal elections, and the final act tells the story of The Last Judgement.

According to Nicola Sapio, the three main goals of a project like Giudizio Universale are “emotional engagement, production versatility, and financial sustainability.” During its first year, Giudizio Universale had 447 performances and attracted 275 thousand people, 25 percent of whom were foreigners.

Preparing the Auditorium della Conciliazione for this immersive show required 55 days and 200 people, who installed 252 light projectors, 30 video projectors, 30 speakers, 39 kilometers of cables and 130 square meters of led walls. The result is a 270-degree immersive projection, with the addition of live performances, and with 3D effects obtained by moving panels. “The audience is completely immersed in the show,” said Sapio. Giudizio Universale also features a short video called “A Flight Over Rome,” which shows how the Eternal City looked like back in 1508.

Along with the show, an educational project called Artainment@School was also developed for students aged 8 to 19. The aim of the project is to promote Italian artistic heritage through an experimental hands-on approach. Participants are encouraged to deepen their artistic and cultural knowledge through the use of digital technologies and to develop an understanding of the plethora of employment opportunities that the art/entertainment industry provides to professionals from other fields. 55 thousand students and over 2,500 teachers from 690 schools across Italy participated in this educational project.

Giudizio Universale targets mainly art lovers, schools, and tourists. “It was difficult to convince people in the tourism sector that there’s more than the usual attractions in Rome,” said Sapio, who described Giudizio Universale as a mix between an art show and a tourist attraction. The organizing team includes names such as Sting, who produced the main theme song, and U.S. actress Susan Sarandon, who lent her voice to the Bible.

After 18 months in Rome, Giudizio Universale – The Sistine Chapel Immersive Show will move to Mexico City. “We will bring the Sistine Chapel to people who may never come to Rome,” said Sapio.