Reading Christmas Party at The Vox

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Event Management / 12.1.18

Christmas Party at The Vox

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Brief

Premier were asked to manage the re-design of a company Christmas party, taking it from a low key drinks event at a local bar, to an up-market, sit down dinner, whilst still incorporating the fun and vibrancy of Inspired Thinking Group.  We jumped at the challenge and designed & created a themed event for 480 of their staff at this yearly Christmas party.

Several ideas were created and proposed to the client, with various mood boards and room designs offering a wide range of options. ITG settled on a game show theme, drawing its inspiration from Saturday Night Takeaway.  To increase excitement and to add as much originality as possible to the event, it was renamed ITG’s Friday Night Takeaway.

To relate the running of this event to the Saturday night show everyone watches and loves, the theme allowed for various game ideas to be decided upon, most of which would rely on the use of a randomiser.  Premier helped create a video randomiser which selected guests at random, allowing them to win prizes. To do this we had to photograph each guest as they entered the venue.

A packed schedule to include a 3-course meal, singing waiters, a band, DJ & entertainment all in line with the Saturday Night Takeaway required a lot of thought, management and of course, pre-production.

The location for the event was The Vox in Birmingham situated next door to the NEC. ITG who are a leader in marketing technology and services come together to celebrate the success within the company and it was Premier’s job to give them an event they will never forget.

 

Process

As with all events, Premier offers our clients a selection of ideas that can be adapted between both Premier and the client that the team will then shape into reality.

Once completing site visits at the venue our in-house Event Designer drew the event in 3D, transforming the main room, and giving it a game show feel, whilst also capturing the essence of ITG and the high end company Christmas party vibe. We have provided AV equipment at The Vox on a number of occasions in the past and so know the venue well.

The pre-event designs are a great starting point to present to a client, in or to expand on the vision that the client has, and the ideas that Premier are able to create, bespoke for each client. They also act as great comparisons post event, Premier used this game show design to liaise with the client and gain information from them in terms of requirements and to see what could be improved, and  how we could make the most of all the equipment.

The design included 3 truss structures and a wide stage with a raised circular platform in the middle.  These structures took their inspiration from the Saturday Night Takeaway set.

Once the design for the event had been approved by ITG the work began, in turning it into a reality. The Event Management team focused on managing the event, while the production team focused on turning the venue into ITG’s Friday Night Takeaway, as well as ensuring the resources required for production of the evening were covered.

Every job poses a few challenges but at Premier we face these way before the event to ensure the end client doesn’t have to, and when it comes to the show day, we have answers for all the questions.

As a standard level of working Premier produces working documents for both the production and event management for the event that outline all elements, step by step that are involved in the event, allowing for crew to swiftly install the event with ease and for the event to run smoothly.

Premier understood early on that behind the stage required uplighting, and a lot of it. This aspect required multiples of the same fixture to evenly uplight the custom truss structures and we looked at various options. The Elation Sixbar 1000 gave us significant advantages over other fixtures as they have ArtNet in & out as well as Powercon in & out. This lets us keep data between control and fixture, on a network. These fixtures also pose another significant advantage, their ability to be linked together with tiny magnets on each end, ensuring they can all be straight and easy to line up.

This event, as many are that Premier creates was completely bespoke to the client, from the three course menu to the set design, the management of this event required several different stakeholders to be involved and was one of Premier’s most complex events to date in terms of the on screen content.

In the run up to the event we facilitated the filming of two music videos containing the senior management team which were played on the night. Premier provided the event space to film these in, as well as a choreographer, director, camera operator and props.

 

Equipment Used

For this event we made use of our brand-new Elation Artiste Davinci moving heads which was situated along the back truss run of the room, complimenting the need for stings, room gobo lighting & mood lighting.

To further increase stage effect we used the Elation 5R Spot Extreme which was situated at ground level along the width of the stage. Premier proposed and installed SGM’S famous pixel tubes which can hang from a structure and can be pixel mappable, great for stings during the show. The truss had LED bobble strings running around the entirety of it and Premier wanted to incorporate this into the show to get the most out of them.

Ground stacked left and right of stage were L-Acoustics ARCS wide and SB18’s which were used to add to the venues already installed L-Acoustics PA system.

As this was a Christmas party with a Saturday night takeaway theme, Premier opted to use the very popular, Showven Sparkulars to be used in line with stings and main prizes on the night. These are great little pyro like units as they can be fired in any environment and are safe to stand next to when being fired.

Live camera feeds and camera operators were essential for this event as a roaming camera was required alongside a static camera at the back. This gave our senior video technician more choice between VT, cameras & static images. The cameras used were the Sony PMW-200 XDCAM and the Sony PXW-Z100 camera which are great cameras with three ½ inch CMOS full HD sensor chips, 14x zoom and image stabilising functions that are great for fast paced environments. These were mixed in a video rack where it is quality checked on a preview screen before hitting the program output.

The program output was 2x Panasonic 10K Laser projectors feeding 2 16x9ft Fastfold screens. At control for audio was the Yamaha QL5 which comes with the RIO stage boxes and Dante capability making for an easy setup offering 32 channels in and 16 out.

For the furniture, the ice chiavari chair was chosen for the event as it was felt that it looked more in keeping with the theme as opposed to the venues chairs with a chair cover. A dedicated VIP chill out area was created in the venue using a number of LED furniture products, including both LED cubes and poseur tables.

Premier also supplied the popular magic selfie mirror as well as an event photographer who was able to capture the moment. Video content was filmed by our team for both the live streaming as well as for creating a highlights video after the event which could be shared by the staff.

 

Client Feedback

I just wanted to say a HUGE thank you for delivering what was our best Christmas party ever.

The whole thing was totally amazing and you were all incredible. Nothing was too much trouble and every detail was spot on.

THANK YOU for making a lot of people VERY happy indeed. Everyone will be talking about the night for many months to come!

 

Stats

Total Equipment Value – £317,250

Total Weight – 9355 KG

Transport: 2x 44T Artic

Premier Team :

  • 8x Technicians
  • 1x Production Manager
  • 1x Event Director
  • 1x Event Manager
  • 1x Senior Event Executive
  • 1x Event Executive

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