The History of the Disco Ball

Many things may come to mind when the word Disco Ball appears. Usually depending upon your age, your idea may be different than someone 10 or 20 years younger than you. We have all seen them hanging around but what exactly is a disco ball?

A disco ball is a round object covered in small square mirror pieces which are used to create a complex display of light reflection. Using hundreds or thousands of similar sized mirror facets, it is suspended from the ceiling and spins via an external motor.

One of the first disco balls appeared in a Boston ballroom in 1897 (cited from Wikipedia). Soon after in the 1920’s dance era, disco balls (sometimes referred to as mirror balls or glitter balls) were noted to be seen in a wide variety of establishments, mainly “underground” dance houses. Some time passed and the disco ball fad seemed to have faded out. After which they made a viable reappearance in the late 1960’s, heavily in the disco era of the 1970’s, and also in the 1980’s.

Since then disco balls can be found in many different locations including: dance clubs, weddings, skating rinks, family entertainment centers, and more. The emergence of the this more than 100 year old fascination with mirrors and lights is on the rise.


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