The improv group Improv Everywhere surprised New Yorkers at Father Demo Square with a magical light switch recently. They placed the gigantic red and white switch outside of the West Village park, and waited for strangers to feel curious enough to flick it.
Finally, one woman decided to see what would happen if she turned it on. She flipped the light switch up, and the entire park was illuminated with twinkling Christmas lights. The area became a mesmerizing site to see. Once the switch was flicked back down, the lights went off again.
To make this prank work, Improv Everywhere purchased over three miles of Christmas lights. They wrapped participants in 200-light strands and asked them to turn them on when someone switched on the light.
"Once the switch was flipped, our lighting crew turned on every single light in the park," the improv group wrote on their blog. "Over a mile of lights covering every surface: trees, benches, and fences. As soon as these lights came on, our performers turned on the lights they were wearing as well and froze in place."
About every 10 minutes, they covered up the light switch with a large tarp and made sure all the lights were turned off. Then, they'd remove the tarp so new passersby who had no idea what it did could discover its magic.
People of all ages really seemed to love it. "I don't understand what just happened," one woman said in the video. "The light switch is giant. It's really cool when you're controlling these people's movements."
"It's really really really really fun!" a child remarked. Another, who enjoyed turning it on and off over and over gave it two thumbs up.
One woman summed it up perfectly: "Beautiful, really beautiful."