International Laser Display Association

The leading worldwide association for companies and persons doing laser light shows, and providing lasershow-related projectors, hardware, software, and services. Supporting safe and ethical laser shows since our founding in 1986.


Six ways ILDA Members make better shows

Our Members add impact to shows with the purest, most brilliant light in the universe

Proven experience as an ILDA Professional accredited company

ILDA helps keep shows safe and legal; free SKYZAN™ safety software for Members

Customers buy with confidence when backed by the Code of Ethics

The world’s best laser shows, at the yearly meeting of the world’s best laserists

Using new technologies and developing industry-wide standards

Our Members add impact to shows with the purest, most brilliant light in the universe

Proven experience as an ILDA Professional accredited company

ILDA helps keep shows safe and legal; free safety software for Members


Customers buy with confidence when backed by the Code of Ethics

The world’s best laser shows, at the yearly meeting of the world’s best laserists

Using new technologies and developing industry-wide standards


2023 ILDA Conference

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The 2023 ILDA Conference in Atlantic Beach, North Carolina has concluded. Here are Conference attendees after the Awards Banquet and Presentation. A list of all Awards can be accessed via the 2023 Awards page.


Losses in the laser show family

Seiji Inatsugu

ILDA was saddened to learn of Seiji Inatsugu’s passing late last year.

He was a giant in our field, one of the pioneers who developed the technology and techniques that made laser shows possible. His innovations are still used today.

A co-founder of Laser Media, he and his colleagues were instrumental in forming the International Laser Display Association. ILDA brought laserists together to improve laser art and safety.

Seiji was the second person to receive the ILDA Career Achievement Award, which was presented in 1990. He richly deserved the highest honor in laser display.

Our condolences go to his wife Barbara Inatsugu, who was also the first secretary of ILDA, and the organization's first Executive Director.

Craig Spredeman

Craig Spredeman, a key Laserium laserist, passed away on January 31, 2024.

From 1977 to 1984 he performed Laserium laser light shows at planetariums in Los Angeles, Boston, Salt Lake City, Seattle and Toronto, as well as many touring shows and concerts. He managed the Special Projects division at Laser Images, Inc.

He worked at Laser Media — Seiji Inatsugu's company — from 1985 to 1990 as both a laserist for trade shows, film/TV and concerts, and as providing technical support.

After his passing, he was described on social media as "a Laserium die-hard, one of the last to leave, a hard worker, very smart, very talented, and always had humor and a positive attitude."


ILDA remembers Ivan Dryer on March 7

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Ivan Dryer, pioneering laser artist and founder of Laserium® planetarium shows, was born on March 7, 1939. In recognition of his achievements, the ILDA Board of Directors in 2017 declared March 7 of each year to be International Laserist Day — a day for recognizing the people and companies who design spectacular laser shows and laser art, throughout the world.

ABOUT IVAN DRYER

Many older ILDA Members had their first exposure to laser displays at a planetarium running Laserium shows. Dryer’s example helped inspire these Members to get into the business, and often to found their own laser display companies.

Within ILDA, Dryer was known for his quiet, thoughtful and kind demeanor. He was a founding Member of the association, served on the Board from 1990 to 1994, and was ILDA President from 1990 to 1992.

Laser Images was host of the 1991 ILDA Conference, held in Los Angeles. The company won 43 ILDA Awards for artistic and technical excellence, in the years between 1988 and 2000.

A 2002 newspaper article summed up how laserists felt about him: “Dryer appears to be universally regarded with awe and respect.”

IVAN DRYER'S LIFE

Dryer received the first ILDA Career Achievement Award, in 1989. His CAA citation includes this: “Dryer is universally recognized as the father of the laser show industry. His selection by ILDA as recipient of the first Career Achievement Award underscores his unique place in the history of laser displays.”

When Ivan Dryer was 20, he joined the Griffith Observatory and Planetarium in Los Angeles as an astronomer. He also was an aspiring filmmaker. In late 1970 he collaborated with Caltech physicist Elsa Garmire, to film laser light patterns she had created. This became the short film LaserImage.

Filmed lasers, however, were flat. They did not have the vibrant scintillating coherent speckle of live laser light. Dryer and Garmire approached the Griffith with a proposal for a live show to be called “Laserium”. They were turned down — both by the Griffith and by banks.

Three years later, Dryer and Garmire put together a demonstration at Caltech, using a 1-watt krypton laser, This time the new head of the Griffith gave an OK for a one-month test at the planetarium.

Laserium premiered November 19, 1973. Four weeks later, 500 people a night were being turned away. Dryer’s company, Laser Images Inc., went on to do laser shows in 46 planetariums and locations in other cities as well. The shows were seen by over 20 million people. At its peak, Laser Images had 70 employees.

In 2002, the Griffith Observatory planetarium was to be closed for renovations. Laserium’s last show there was January 5, 2002. It had run for 28 years — the longest running theatrical attraction in Los Angeles, and the longest-running laser show in the world.

As new technologies such as bright, large, hi-def video screens and computer graphics improved, classic laser shows with their lo-res wireframe images fell out of favor. Laserium scaled back, while Dryer kept working with lasers and Laserium projects. He officially retired in 2009, when Laser Images Inc.’s assets were acquired by Jon Robertson of DayStar Lasers.

In 2013, Dryer received the first IMERSA Lifetime Achievement Award from the Immersive Media Entertainment, Research, Science and Arts association. IMERSA noted “In addition to his pioneering creative and technical achievement, he also did something unprecedented for planetariums and science centers: Laserium showed that these facilities could be used as entertainment venues, increasing attendance and generating revenue…. Dryer’s influence carries on with presentations where light becomes an actor.”

In his acceptance speech, which received a standing ovation, Dryer recounted the history of his laser work, with many humorous anecdotes. He concluded by saying “I’m delighted that we managed to enlist what was then a somewhat esoteric technological device that has been used to guide missiles and telescopes, to instead guide the neurons in millions of brains to dance synesthetically in a fusion of music and image that enhances both -- to create a machinery of joy. The compliment I most prize was from a woman who came up to me and said, ‘You know, I envy you, you’re spreading joy!’”

Dryer cared for his convalescent wife, Carol, through her death in June 2016. This took a toll on his health as well.

A documentary film on his life and work is in production, and is expected to be released later this year.

Additional background and reminiscences are at Laserium’s website, photos and text at the Leaping Robot Blog and the links at Dryer’s Wikipedia page.

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In 2017, ILDA honored Ivan Dryer by declaring his birthday, March 7, to be “International Laserist Day.” He was sent this plaque, to let him know how much he means to ILDA and laserists in general.

Ivan had been very ill at the time. His brother, David Dryer, presented it to him and told ILDA “Ivan had a big smile on his face when I showed him the plaque. That's the first smile in about a year!”


Proposed ILDA standard for safe laser shows

ILDA is developing a standard for laser shows that the association would generally recognize as safe. The "Category A Laser Show Standard" includes requirements for simplified, lower-power shows with terminated beams.

The standard is currently being drafted. It is not yet approved or adopted. ILDA welcomes comments and suggestions. These are invited from anyone — Members, non-Members, regulators, safety experts, etc.

The draft document, plus a summary of the proposed requirements and discussion of what the Standard hopes to eventually accomplish, are on the Category A Laser Show Standard page.


ILDA Member discount at Lasershow.biz

ILDA Members receive a 10% discount on laser shows sold by Lasershow.biz. This is a platform for award-winning laser show designers around the world, to present and sell their work. Many of the shows themselves have won awards from ILDA and other groups.

When you register for an account at the website, click the ILDA Membership box if you are a Member. Later, when you go to purchase, Lasershow.biz will check your name against ILDA's online list of members and you'll get the 10% discount.


ILDA health plans for U.S. Members

ILDA has now joined with the LIG Insurance Group to bring health care policies to our U.S. Members. This is an Association Health Program where LIG finds policies that meet your particular health care needs and desires (including extras such as dental and vision).

If you like your current health care insurance, that’s fine. But if you’d like to hear about alternatives that may save money and/or give increased coverage, you can now call 888-869-7142 or check out the the LIG ILDA Health Coverage page.

Sorry, the healthcare benefit is U.S. only because of U.S. laws. On the other hand, many of our ILDA-Member countries have health care systems with coverage that may be more comprehensive and/or more affordable than the U.S. employer-based system. And if any non-U.S. Members have information about similar association insurance programs in their countries, we would be glad to get details.

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ILDA Members attending the 2018 Conference in Montréal


For more information, visit our other ILDA websites:

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ILDAmember.com: Membership database and event management, including joining ILDA
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LasershowSafety.info: Information about safe laser shows, including laws, regulations, checklists, and more

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Photo credit: Green beams above column 1 (The universe’s most unique light) — “Scooter” by Lightline Lasertechnik.