Domino games

Domino Day

Domino Day
Genre Entertainment
Television special
Game show
Created by Robin Paul Weijers
Presented by International host:
Linda de Mol (1999-2002)
Frauke Ludowig (2004-06)
Country of origin Netherlands
Original language(s) Dutch, German, English
No. of seasons 11
No. of episodes 11
Production company(s) Endemol
  • SBS Broadcasting
  • RTL Television
Original network
  • SBS 6
  • RTL
Picture format 4:3 (1998-2007)
16:9 (2008-09)
Original release 28 August 1998 - 13 November 2009
External links

Domino Day was a world record attempt for the highest number of toppling domino stones, organized from 1998 to 2009 by Endemol Netherlands. Together with Weijers Domino Productions of Robin Paul Weijers, also known as Mr. Domino, parties teamed up to set a new world record. The production was mainly organized at the WTC-Expo in Leeuwarden, Netherlands.

Subsequent record attempts

Date Year Theme Location Result Fallen Total  % First Stone toppled by
28 August 1998 Domino D-Day: Visionland Leeuwarden, Netherlands Success 1,605,757 2,300,000 69.8 Linda de Mol
5 November 1999 Domino Day: Europa ohne Grenzen (Europe Without Borders) Zuidlaren, Netherlands Success 2,472,480 2,500,000 98.9 Hans Klok
3 November 2000 Domino Day: Action - Reaction Zuidlaren, Netherlands Success 2,977,678 3,112,000 95.7 Lionel Richie
16 November 2001 Domino Day: Bridging the World Maastricht, Netherlands Success 3,540,562 3,750,000 94.4 Kylie Minogue
15 November 2002 Domino Day: Expressions for Millions Leeuwarden, Netherlands Success 3,847,295 4,000,000 96.2 Nick Carter
12 November 2004 Domino Day: The Challenge Leeuwarden, Netherlands Success 3,992,397 4,250,000 93.9 Shania Twain
18 November 2005 Domino Day: Domino Theatre of Eternal Stories Leeuwarden, Netherlands Success 4,002,136 4,321,000 92.6 Anastacia
17 November 2006 Domino Day: Music in Motion Leeuwarden, Netherlands Success 4,079,381 4,400,000 92.7 Kim Wilde
16 November 2007 Domino Day: Falling into Life Leeuwarden, Netherlands Failure 3,671,465 4,500,000 81.6 Katie Melua
14 November 2008 Domino Day: Celebrating 10 years of Domino Day Leeuwarden, Netherlands Success 4,345,027 4,500,000 96.6 Salima Peippo
13 November 2009 Domino Day: The World in Domino - The Show with the Flow Leeuwarden, Netherlands Success 4,491,863 4,800,000 93.6 Jeroen de Meij

Recurring elements

Builders' Challenge

Starting in 2004, each Domino Day has featured Builders' Challenges, with three challenges in 2004 and 2005, and four challenges starting in 2006. Builders are usually chosen in pairs for each Builder's Challenge. The chosen builders then have to complete vital parts of the setup while the dominoes are already toppling elsewhere, in order to allow another field of dominoes to topple. This usually takes the form of trying to bridge the gap(s) in an unfinished setup before the toppling dominoes reach it.

Builders Challenge results
Year 1 2 3 4
2004 Success Failure Failure n/a
2005 Success Failure Cheated n/a
2006 Failure Failure Failure Success
2007 Failure Success Success Failure
2008 Success Failure Success Success
2009 Failure Failure Failure Success

For the 2005 event, the dominoes which fell during the third builders challenge were not counted for the record as it was determined that the one of the builders restarted the flow of the dominoes after they had stopped due to two being placed too far apart. In the 2006 event the second and third builders challenge were successful in that the challenge was completed, but due to incorrect timing the gates did not lift, thus stopping the flow before it reached the fields.

Slow Stones

Starting in 2006, a series of "Slow Stones" are placed just before the final Builders Challenge. Slow Stones are relatively large, transparent domino stones filled with colored powder, with each Slow Stone containing a different-colored powder. Upon reaching the first Slow Stone, its powder begins to drain (similar to an hourglass) until it becomes light enough to tip over, hitting the next Slow Stone to start its powder draining. The process takes approximately one minute per Slow Stone. The Slow Stones are used as an opportunity to cut to advertising, show highlights from earlier in the show, do interviews, etc. The builders of the last Builders Challenge are also selected during the Slow Stones, and the challenge itself starts after the last Slow Stone has fallen.

Past Domino Day editions

A domino show

Domino Day 2005

During the preparations of Domino Day 2005 on 14 November, with only four days to go until event, a sparrow flew into the building and landed on several domino bricks, eventually causing 23,000 of them (out of 4 million) to fall. The sparrow was eventually shot, by hired exterminator. Outraged by shooting, animal rights group took court actions against the exterminator and the Domino Day production company Endemol. Public prosecutors in The Hague opened an investigation and eventually issued a €200 fine to the exterminator.

Domino Day 2006

A new world record was set on 17 November on Domino Day. 4,079,381 stones were toppled out of the 4,400,000 that were set up. The first three builders' challenges failed so the success of the last challenge was crucial to setting the world record.

The design of the course took about a year and a team of 90 builders took around two months to build it.

The theme, Music in Motion, represents 9 different kinds of music: Rock n' Roll, Classical Music, Pop Star, Schlager, Roaring 20's, Flower Power, World Music, Hip Hop, and Disco Fever.

The Builder's Challenges represent the history of the music players, which are: Record Player, Tape Player, CD Player, and MP3 player.

Each Builder's Challenge has a field with a number of dominoes with the number 4 At the beginning. The record player challenge field contains 400 dominoes, the tape player challenge has a field of 4,000 dominoes, the CD player challenge contains 40,000 dominoes, and the MP3 player challenge contains 400,000 dominoes.

Domino Day 2007

The theme of this year was 'Falling into Life'. A total of 4,500,000 stones were placed by 85 builders from 12 countries. Only 81.6% of the dominoes fell, resulting in a final count of 3,671,465.

Domino Day 2007 was held on 16 November and appeared to fail mostly because of the unsuccessful final challenge to create a bridge of dominoes on a revolving hammer/clock structure to link up with over 400,000 stones. However, it was later revealed that even if this area had fallen, the 2006 record would not have been broken. It was the first time that Domino Day failed to set a new record.

Domino Day 2008

On 14 November 2008 the team of Weijers Domino Productions tried to break the world record domino toppling. They did set up 4.5 million dominoes in the WTC Expo Center in Leeuwarden to try topping the previous record of 2 years ago, which was at 4,079,381 dominoes toppled.

'Celebrating 10 years of Domino Day - Breaking more World Records than ever' is the central theme of Domino Day 2008. Domino Day celebrates its 10th anniversary this year.

Although the second Builder Challenge failed, the record was broken with 4,345,027 dominoes toppled. Also, 10 additional world records were attempted and successfully broken. These additional world records were:

  1. Longest domino spiral (200 m)
  2. Highest domino climb (12 m)
  3. Smallest domino stone (7 mm)
  4. Largest domino stone (4.8 m)
  5. Longest domino wall (16 m)
  6. Largest domino structure (25,000 stones)
  7. Fastest topple of 30 metres of domino stones (4.21 sec) (the sprinter Churandy Martina ran with the dominoes and achieved the time of 3.81 sec for the same distance)
  8. Largest number of domino stones resting on a single domino (727 stones)
  9. Largest rectangular level domino field (1 million stones)
  10. Most fallen dominoes (4,345,027 stones)

Domino Day 2009

The 2009 event is entitled 'The World in Domino - The Show with the Flow'. It was the 11th edition of the show; it showed different aspects of the world with the display moving from continent to continent. The design uses 4.8 million dominoes. 4,345,028 dominoes were needed to be toppled in order to break the standing world record. Even though part of the final section of the piece did not fall, and three builder's challenges failed, the number of dominoes toppled was 4,491,863.

The flows for 2009 are: The American Dream, Latin Extravaganza, The African Life, Colors of Europe, Balancing Yin and Yang, Rough Ice, and Sun, Sand, and Sealife.

The 1st, and 2nd Builder's Challenges contain 25,000 dominoes representing earth, and air, the 3rd Builder's Challenge Contain 50,000 dominoes representing water, and the 4th Builder's Challenge has 500,000 dominoes representing all of Earth's continents.

Since 2010

The show is officially paused due to financial and organizational problems. Domino Day was the biggest TV production of the Netherlands.

International broadcast

Country Name Host TV station Live Years
Austria Domino Day Marie Christine Giuliani (2000-2002),
Armin Assinger (2004-2009)
ORF eins Yes 2000-2009
Belgium Domino D-Day (1998)
Domino Day
Stefan Van Loock vtm Yes 1998-2009
Croatia Domino Day Antonija Mandić, Dorijan Klarić RTL Televizija Yes 2005-2009
France Domino Day - Record du monde Denis Brogniart;
Flavie Flament, Dave (2001-2005)
TF1 (2001-2005),
TMC (2006-2009)
Yes 2001-2009
Domino Day - Les records les plus incroyables Valérie Bénaïm D8 No 2014-present*
Domino Day Linda de Mol (1998-2002),
Frauke Ludowig (2004-2009)
RTL Yes 1998-2009
Domino Day - Highlights Linda de Mol RTL & Super RTL No 2003
Greece Ημέρα του ντόμινο Katerina Karavatou,
Fotis Sergoulopoulos
ANT1 Yes 2008-2009
Hungary Dominó Nap Zoltán Szujó, Éva Horváth RTL Klub Yes 2000-2009
Original format,
Domino D-Day (1998)
Domino Day
Hans Kraay, Jr.,
Wendy van Dijk (1998-2004),
Nance (2005-2009)
SBS 6,
NET 5 (1999)
Yes 1998-2009
Poland Dzień Domina - TVN Yes 2005-2009
Russia День Домино Egor Pirogov (Егор Пирогов) REN TV No 2005-2009
Slovakia Domino Day Mateja Cifru TV JOJ Yes 2007-2009
Spain Domino Day Constantino Romero (2001-2002),
Carlos Sobera (2004-2007)
Antena 3 No 2001-2007
United Kingdom Domino Day Christian Stevenson Channel 5 No 2005-2009
United States Domino Day 2001 Rich Eisen ABC No 2001

(* Reruns)


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