The Lightshow Laboratory
Light Show from London, UK run by Mike Hart AKA Molten Mick and Alan Day.
We emailed Mike Hart during November 2021 regarding the 'Official Story' of Proteus and associated projects but am still waiting for a reply.
In the meantime please enjoy this interview transcript, used with permission from the author Joe Banks (Days of The Underground):
Proteus lightshow was resident at the London Lyceum Sunday concerts and first met Hawkwind on the 2nd of August 1970 and again at the Lyceum on 6th September 1970.
We had bought the laser, a bubble machine and 8 Aldis Tutor 2 projectors for the British Steel Corporation stand at the Ideal Homes Exhibition in 1971 which were given to us even though BSC paid for them.
I can’t find any details for the whole of 1970, 1971, but there must have been gigs with Hawkwind during those years.
We also used the laser occasionally for all subsequent gigs.
From 02/09/72 at Dagenham 03/09/72 Croydon it was Proteus.
Until the start of the Space Ritual Tour is better documented, I won’t last all the dates for 1972, but the highlights were and from 04/09/72 included Jonathan Smeeton. The Oval concert, Holland, Germany, Switzerland, France. Windsor.
The gig at Tunbridge Wells on 04/09/72 was when Jonathan Smeeton appeared unannounced with his equipment.
Although we had different projectors, slides and liquids we gelled and so the partnership began.
Before the Space Ritual I was experimenting with bouncing projections off of flexible mirrors from a position on the stage - this is now known as Lumia and we weren’t the first to use this technique.
The start date for the name Proteus was sometime between 1969 -1970. Before that we were called The Lightshow Laboratory.
We started experimenting with liquids in 1966 whilst working as a barman at The Cooks Ferry Inn which had a thriving music scene with many bands of that era.
The British Steel Corporation event came about in 1970 when someone (can’t remember who) approached us either at the Lyceum or at University College.
Not only were we resident at The Lyceum we were also resident at University College where many bands performed such as Deep Purple, Free, Argent, Jethro Tull, Nice, Focus. We performed many times at several other colleges and Universities, private parties and we did several gigs with Sam Gopal Dream.
We first became aware of Hawkwind at the Lyceum in August 2nd 1970. See my earlier notes for more details.
I left Liquid Len and the Lensmen just before the American tour as I had studied for three years to get my degree in Biomedical Science and could not leave my work for the tour. Do I regret leaving, yes and no.
Addendum: the start of the Space Ritual tour was not September 2nd 1972 but was November 8th.
If you can help with more information about this Light Show we would love to hear from you.