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Arts & Entertainment

San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral hosts laser show this weekend

A test run being conducted of one of the lasers for a light display at Grace Cathedral. | Courtesy Grace Cathedral | Source: Courtesy Grace Cathedral

Grace Cathedral has been overtaken by space lasers. 

The iconic house of worship is one of several San Francisco landmarks being lit up this summer by Illuminate, a nonprofit that creates public art out of light. It’s done projects from immersive light installations in Golden Gate Park to helping restore the Bay Bridge’s beloved nighttime twinkle.

The latest Summer of Awe laser installation, happening Thursday through Saturday evening, includes 12 laser beams projecting from the roof of the Fairmont Hotel and shining into the cathedral’s famed rose window. 

The cathedral’s doors will be open to the public from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. for free entry during the display, and on Saturday, the music of vocalist and pianist Clare Hedin will accompany the laser production. 

“The sheer volume of that much-concentrated light will be awesome,” said Eva Woo Slavitt, director and canon for marketing and communications at Grace Cathedral. “It will be very interesting how it will translate.” 

The event includes a special haze machine inside the cathedral that will accentuate the light. 

During Friday’s laser show, vocalist Bobby McFerrin will lead 24 hours of uninterrupted music and prayers in an event called Circlesong

The concentrated light from 12 laser canons down into a single beam is meant to provoke a sense of awe at a dark moment for the city. 

Summer of Awe Laser Installation 

🗓️ Thurs.-Sat. | 9 p.m.-10 p.m. 
📍Grace Cathedral, 1100 California St. 

Julie Zigoris can be reached at