The Space Needle Rings in 2023 with First-Ever Integrated Drone, Light, and Fireworks Celebration

For the first time ever, 200 drones were launched and projected off the Space Needle and synchronized with fireworks and light displays to create captivating formations. Ringing in 2023, T-Mobile New Year’s at the Needle is one of the largest structurally-launched fireworks shows in the world. These new choreographed elements produced a cohesive and innovative New Year’s spectacular, using hundreds of drones, explosive pyrotechnics, and elaborate lighting effects simultaneously throughout the 11-minute show.

At 11:59PM, cutting-edge drones burst into the sky to provide a numerical countdown to the big show, which was synced to an all-star playlist celebrating some of the biggest music and pop culture moments of the year. Show highlights included:

  • A tribute to Ukraine with a call for world peace, set to the soundtrack of the song “Stefania” by Ukrainian folk-rap group Kalush Orchestra (the winner of the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest);
  • Celebrating the cultural phenomenon of Kate Bush’s “Running Up That Hill”, the 1985 track that had a resurgence this past year thanks to the Netflix series, Stranger Things;
  • The runner-up of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, “Space Man” by Sam Ryder, honored the Space Needle’s spirit during the landmark’s 60th Anniversary, and marks the first time that songs from Eurovision have been part of T-Mobile New Year’s at the Needle

The soundtrack was crafted to bring together local and global artists and reach across generations. Other artists featured in this year’s show included Lizzo, Harry Styles, ODESZA, Doja Cat, OneRepublic, and Whitney Houston.

“Our goal for this New Year’s celebration was to create a world of joy for viewers,” said Randy Coté, Chief Marketing Officer for the Space Needle. “We hope this show served as a spark that ignites 2023 to become our best year yet! Whether the show was a chance to celebrate, reflect on the past, or look ahead to a brighter future, we hope it becomes a launching pad to an optimistic and joyful new year around the world.”

Alongside drone specialists Sky Elements, Pyro Spectaculars by Souza and Illuminate Production Service returned as the fireworks and lighting specialists, respectively.

For the tenth consecutive year the Space Needle’s exclusive partner, T-Mobile, sponsored the West Coast’s premier New Year’s celebration. The show was broadcast locally on KING 5 and streamed online exclusively at, with the show’s audio simulcast by iHeart Radio on HITS 106.1.

To watch the full show, visit

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