Monday, December 17, 2018

Our Very Best Wishes To You!

Dear Friends,

As the year draws to a close we reflect on the events of the past 12 months. 
We consider ourselves so lucky to make a living in a profession that makes us happy. 
We appreciate all the opportunities for creative and exciting collaborations with you. Thank You!
We are looking forward to a successful 2019.

From our EW Family to Your Family:
Merry Christmas - Happy Holidays 
and a Happy New Year!

Monday, December 10, 2018

Event Music: Is There Such A Thing As A Really "Clean" Playlist?

Wow. What a can of worms!
Since a Cleveland, Ohio, radio station started a ban on the 74-year old Christmas tune "Baby, It's Cold Outside" because the lyrics were deemed "inappropriate" by some listeners in the #metoo era, public reaction has been swift. Twitter and Facebook erupted. Extensive scrolling of both platforms shows that 99+% of all comments supports the Holiday classic.
But the issue started a conversation we in the event industry take very seriously. DJ Lee Dyson has a lot to say!

Can a flirty duet written in the social context of the 1940s become politically so incorrect that it has to be yanked off radio and event playlists? WDOK listeners seemed to find it offensive enough to call in. A week ago WDOK stopped playing the classic tune. Other stations followed suit.
The ban created headlines and reaction in media and on social media platforms. The overwhelming consensus: the ban is completely unjustified. Comical #BabyItsColdOutside memes popped up. Many long lists of rap songs that are truly offensive to women by every current rap and hip hop artist, including Beyonce's husband Jay Z, were published. Twitter and Facebook users had fun analyzing more Holiday tunes. If you want to be on the safe side, you better stick to instrumental jazz and classical music only. Even operas like Mozart's "Don Giovanni" could be controversial, after all.

We called DJ Lee Dyson to get his opinion and input. He immediately sprung into action and created a completely CLEAN PLAYLIST he is happy to share on SPOTIFY.

DJ Lee Dyson:  "I had to really do some research and double check lyrics for almost every song. It is amazing how many catchy songs we hear without really processing the words.
Here are my thoughts:

  • This is a really difficult  and polarizing topic.
  • Many songs are just clearly blatantly chauvinistic and misogynistic against women.
  • However, what makes it more difficult is that many songs that exploit women are BY women.
  • SO that proposes the question (Much like the “N” word if it’s used by Black people)  If a woman decides to call herself a bitch/ho….is it empowerment or are they contributing to the problem?

To be clear, I don’t offer the answer or an opinion…I’m just laying out the dilemma as I see it.

We must be sensitive to our country’s history of oppressing genders and race but at the same time, if we sanitize all art, music, books and movies from our culture that someone deems offensive then we may quickly be on our way to book burning and a big brother society and have surprisingly very few dance party songs left.

Especially considering this:

  • Decades long studies show that as much as 92% of Billboard top 10 songs are about sex or courting.

"further analyses showed that the bestselling songs in all three charts featured significantly more reproductive messages than those that failed to make it into the Top Ten," the report says. That's the trend that not only dated back to 1959 in American music, the study found, but one that goes all the way back to the classy days of opera: "While the frequency of some of the themes differ, these findings clearly show that the same reproductive categories derived from the content analysis of our initial sample of 2009 contemporary songs map surprisingly well onto the lyrics from opera and arts songs dating back hundreds of years."

Let’s  explore a few examples to consider:

“Summer” by Calvin Harris
The lyrics read:
“When I met you in the summer
To my heartbeat sound
We fell in love
As the leaves turned brown
And we could be together baby
As long as skies are blue”

So far so good right?
But then he says
“You act so innocent now, But you lied so soon”

How is that to be interpreted?
Does he mean the woman is in the power position by taking advantage of him? Or does he mean that he viewed her as a woman that pretended to be innocent, but he really thinks she is a promiscuous girl?

How about another fun pop song you wouldn’t immediately think about as offensive:

Walk the Moon “Shut up and dance”

"...We were victims of the night
The chemical, physical, kryptonite
Helpless to the bass and the fading light
Oh we were bound to get together
Bound to get together
Deep in her eyes
I think I see the future
I realize this is my last chance..."

Do these lyrics mean the woman is in the power position and controlling the encounter? Or does Is mean that the woman just wants to dance but the man is assuming it’s a sign that she is going to have sex with him and neither will be responsible?

Pitbul and Ne-yo “Time of our lives”

"...She on the rebound, broke up with her ex
And I'm like Rodman, ready on deck
I told her I wanna ride out, and she said yes
We didn't go to church, but I got blessed
But I got just enough
To get off in this club
Have me a good time, before my time is up..."

Does this at first glance feels offensive and derogatory to woman?
But I would point out that in the lyrics he said he asked if she  “wants to ride out and she said yes” and also “Its my night, your night, our night, let’s turn it up”. Both statements seem to imply consent?

I’m asking you to think about this and decide if you can see where the line is and think about how different people may interpret these lyrics differently..

Arianna Grande- God is a woman

“You, you love it how I move you
You love it how I touch you
My one, when all is said and done
You'll believe God is a woman
And I, I feel it after midnight
A feelin' that you can't fight
My one, it lingers when we're done
You'll believe God is a woman
I don't wanna waste no time, yuh
You ain't got a one-track mind, yuh
Have it any way you like, yuh
And I can tell that you know I know how I want it
Ain't nobody else can relate
Boy, I like that you ain't afraid
And I, I feel it after midnight
A feelin' that you can't fight
My one, it lingers when we're done
You'll believe God is a woman, yeah, yeah”

Every empowering title that could easily be an anthem for all ladies. However, this song is clearly about sex and how well she can please her man.
So is that empowerment because she appears to be in control of the narrative? Or is she sending negative signals to young woman that the only way to get a man to see you as powerful is to be extremely talented in the bedroom?

Or how about this harmless Beatles classic “Twist and Shout”

Well, shake it up, baby, now (shake it up, baby)
Twist and shout (twist and shout)
Come on, come on, come on, come on, baby now (come on, baby)
Come on and work it on out (work it on out)
Well, work it on out, honey (work it on out)
You know, you look so good (look so good)
You know, you got me goin' now (got me goin')
Just like I knew you would (like I knew you would)
Well, shake it up, baby, now (shake it up, baby)
Twist and shout (twist and shout)
Come on, come on, come on, come on, baby, now (come on, baby)
Come on and work it on out (work it on out)
You know you twist you, little girl (twist, little girl)
You know you twist so fine (twist so fine)
Come on and twist a little closer now (twist a little closer)
And let me know that you're mine (let me know you're mine)

Is this just a fun song about two people dancing and courting?
Or does he suggest she should dance sexually for his amusement and arousal?
Does he suggest that if she is dancing suggestively it should mean that he will get to “have” her?

Again, the slippery slope evolves as our country moves more towards reacting to micro-aggressions. We may want to be careful not to overreact to minor offenses so far that we cater to the opinions of the few.

When that radio station took a poll of all their listeners, about 80% said they didn’t find it personally offensive so as of this week they put “Baby It’s Cold Outside” back on the air.

The question is this: should a song, movie or piece of art be removed/sterilized from 10 people because 1 person finds it offensive….or if 8 out of 10 find it offensive? When do we have enough consensus?

I’m just trying to point out that we live in very challenging times where our society needs to adapt and change for the better so everyone feels included and not oppressed…but without becoming thought police.  Especially considering that we as humans spend a large majority of our time thinking about finding or having love, romance and sex with a mate. So to expect that we can remove this base instinct from our art/music may prove to be problematic.

Just to really illustrate how prevalent this issue is with lyrical content and how desolate the dancing landscape would be if we removed them all……here’s a list of current pop and classic songs that are usually played at most weddings/corporate events - and I even ignored all the worst / most obvious offenders! - that have questionable lyrics regarding woman or are basically about sex. Some of these are at least clean with no swear words or have clean versions available FYI.

Luis Fonsi- Despacito
Mark Ronson & Bruno Mars-  Uptown Funk
Maroon 5 – Girls like you, Sugar, Moves like Jagger
Imagine Dragons- natural
Pitbull- Fireball, Give me everything
Train- Hey Soul Sister
Cardi B- I Like it
Iggy Izalea- Fancy
Jessie J- Bang Bang
Drake- in my feelings, Hotline Bling
Daft Punk- Get lucky
Bruno Mars- 24K, Treasure, Finesse, That’s what I like
Calvin harris & Dua Lipa- One Kiss
Fetty Wap- Trap Queen
Portugal the man-  Feel it still
Fitz & the Tantrums- Handclap
Fifth Harmony- Work it
Clean Bandit- Solo
Ed Sheeran- Shape of you
LMFAO- Party Rock Anthem , I’m Sexy and I know it
Killers- Mr Brightside
Michael Jackson- Billie Jean, Don’t Stop till you get enough
Outkast- Hey Ya
R Kelly- Ignition
Blackstreet- no Diggity
Britney Spears- Pretty much most of her songs lol
DNCE- Cake By the Ocean
Usher- yeah
Missy Elliot- Work it, Get ur Freak on
B52s- Love Shack
Vanilla Ice- Ice ice baby (About a drug related drive by shooting)
Weekend- I Can’t feel my face (about cocaine)
Commadores- Brick house
Bel Biv Devoe- Poison
Sugar Hill Gang- Rappers Delight
Sir Mix A lot- Baby got back
Salt & Pepa- Push it
Black Eyed Peas- My Humps, Boom Pow
Nelly- Hot in here
Ton Loc- Wild Thing
AC DC- You Shook me all night long
House of Pain- Jump Around
Billy Idol- Mony Mony
Lady Gaga- Let’s Dance, Bad Romance
Def Leppard- Pour some Sugar on me
Big & Rich- Save a horse ride a cowboy
50 Cent- In Da Club


Please everyone, let's be kind to one another and relax and ENJOY THE MUSIC!
We have even found a guilt-free version of "Baby. It's Cold Outside" for modern women.

IN THIS VERSION LADY GAGA tries to keep JOSEPH GORDON-LEVITT warm in the Muppets Holiday Spectacular 2013.

Monday, December 3, 2018

Global Inspiration: Janet Reports From Her Visit To Kiev, Ukraine.

Janet's recent Europe trip included many historic sites but since Kiev, Ukraine, is now a tech goldmine, she checked out an event company on her vacation as well.

"I originally met Sergey Rodinov during his business trip to the US. I contacted him once I knew my dates in Kiev and he graciously invited us to visit his offices. His global services and work are a trend worth exploring."

Silicon Valley companies like Google and Oracle outsource 100,000 jobs to Kiev, 
Seedstars director of business development Igor Ovcharenko: "We have 100 thousand developers and IT-related people officially working for outsourcing companies in Ukraine but you can easily triple that amount with freelancers and those who are not officially registered."

Janet: "Kiev is one of the hottest markets for tech startups in the world and this industry is global. During our lunch in Los Angeles I was impressed with the quality of the pre-visit renderings his company produced for event clients worldwide. We also talked about local event trends. Imagine my surprise when Sergey shared current themes that his Ukrainian clients want! Mexican Fiestas and American themed parties are top requests.
Since the cost of living in Ukraine is much lower than in the US, the rates and fees adjust. Rockets Events, Sergey's company, offers the graphic design and video services in many languages and he has fluent English speakers on staff. Since Kiev is 10 hours ahead of Los Angeles, they deliver smaller jobs literally overnight. It is a great new resource when your local team is in a crunch."

Sergey: "The majority of my team speak English. But if anyone of my team who is responsible for a specific task doesn’t we will translate all the materials before sending the project to you by the fluent speaking member of our agency.

The work speed and delivery time  of renderings depend on the materials you provide us with.
If you give us a project draft it can take 2-3 days to modify it upon your request/ideas/wishes.
If we have just your verbal ideas and some examples of works it can take a minimum of 5 days.
All these times are approximate because any rendering consists of details and the more we need to create and to add the more time we need to complete the full visualization.

As I wrote to Janet - interested clients can send us a test request which will be completed free of charge. I think it will help international clients evaluate our level of work, learn about the rates and find out if they will be comfortable working with us. Below is an example of a recent 3D rendering."
Sergey: "Global communication is easy these days. To get started you provide us with your brief, your technical request and ideas which we study. If necessary we can video conference to discuss. Communication can be online with myself or the project manager via WhatsApp/Viber/Telegram/Facebook/Email or in any way the client wishes.
We deliver materials through DropBox and clients have an opportunity to make comments and to observe the process.
We offer to deliver it through DropBox so the quality will not to be lost.

And about those American and Mexican Parties: these themed parties one of the most popular in our country. Most of the people here in Ukraine dream of visiting these countries. To attend the themed party is a chance to immerse oneself in the American Spirit and to feel the exotic atmosphere of Mexican."

Janet: "The atmosphere in Kiev was infectious. It is a young, enterprising, creative and hard working city. Please call me if you'd like to learn more. I will be happy to put you in touch with Sergey."

Thank you for reading.

Monday, November 26, 2018

Event Site Report: We ❤️ The Banc of California Stadium in Los Angeles

"Being of Los Angeles and for Los Angeles", the most expensive U.S. soccer stadium is not only great for sports but also an event producer's dream. 

Ted Bowers and Alisa Walsh recently had the pleasure of exploring the newest large addition to Downtown Los Angeles' event site offerings - and came back to the office inspired.
Alisa Walsh, an avowed soccer fan - you may remember her report from World Cup in Russia: "I can’t wait to show it to our clients!”

The Banc of California stadium in Exposition Park, next to the Coliseum and the USC Campus offers a myriad of event possibilities in an elegant, high tech setting. 
Perfectly located near Downtown and great for #LA2028 - call us soon to plan your future event.

Alisa Walsh: "The interior of the stadium is a design dream come true. Each room and event space was beautifully crafted with unique personality to encompass the lifestyle of Los Angeles – from chic gold & white marbled bar fronts, to colorful swings and lawn games, even down to a ceiling sculpture of an iconic L.A. Freeway intersection! The marketing and event material that is available through Annie Benson is incredibly user friendly – it is clear that this stadium was created with ease of event production in mind."
The LAFC in action. As to be expected near Hollywood, games attract a large number of celebrities.
The Sunset Club

"Premium spaces include The Sunset Club (6,985 sq.ft.), a one-of-kind venue that was created with the pristine Los Angeles weather in mind has boasting views of downtown LA, Peristyle at USC Coliseum and the Hollywood Sign. Emphasizing the venue’s sightline and midcentury modern décor, the Sunset Deck creates the ultimate social setting of a “Palm Desert oasis” in the heart of Los Angeles." 
CAPACITIES Existing Seating: 350 Cocktail: 195 Banquet: 116 Theater: 88 Classroom: 84

Ted Bowers: "I was impressed with many aspects, starting with the speed of development. We watched the progress of construction alongside the 110 freeway, not far from our office. It took only 17 months from demolition of the L.A. Memorial Sports Arena to completion of the new State of the Art stadium. The new stadium offers spaces for every taste and purpose. The Sunset Deck looks like a fun area to hang out during the game.
European fans are accustomed to the close excitement of the standing supporter’s shoulder to shoulder section. Banc of California stadium offers this intimate experience and it sounds like a blast! Every seat has a great view of the field and thanks to Principal and Design Director of Gensler Sports Jonathan Emmett's "framing views", most seats also have a view of DTLA on a clear day. This design feature was very much at the heart of the planning and the desire to tie the stadium to the city and such provide a local personality. Last but not least I am a foodie and as such delighted to see that the stadium teamed up with local restaurants to provide an upgraded food & beverage experience."
Suspended from the ceiling: a sculpture of an iconic Freeway interchange in the
Figueroa Club.

"Figueroa Club (6,018 sq.ft.), located on the East side of the stadium, captures the essence of Downtown LA with communal seating, local graffiti art, and local beers and food. Combine that with this space’s ability to connect the flare and style of the sport of soccer leaves you with the most unique event venue not only in the LA sports scene, but all of LA." 
CAPACITIES Existing Seating: 315 Cocktail: 385 Banquet: 234 Theater: 128 Classroom: 120
Founders Club

"Located on the mezzanine level, the Founders Club (10,199 sq.ft.) is the most expansive and wide-open club in the stadium. With 14-foot ceilings and views of the pitch, the Founders Club offers the optimal setting for exclusive parties. Attached to the Club is an exclusive roof-top venue located above the International Food Experience, suitable for any styled activation."  
CAPACITIES Existing Seating: 450 Cocktail: 480 Banquet: 220 Theater: 320 Classroom: 124
Field Club

"Intimate and private, the Field Club (16,311 sq.ft.) is perfect for any event and allows open floor plans for theater or ballroom configurations. Located in the heart of the club are two enclosed multi-purpose rooms, both of which provide additional space adaptable for any occasion."
CAPACITIES Existing Seating: 575 Cocktail: 520 Banquet: 380 Theater: 400 Classroom: 142
Directors Lounge

"Adjacent to the Field Level Club, the Directors Lounge (3,559 sq.ft.) is an enclosed space with luxury finishes that will complement all events. With a private bar and flexible floor plan, the Directors Lounge is suitable for any VIP experience."
CAPACITIES Existing Seating: 200 Cocktail: 115 Banquet: 120 Theater: 156 Classroom: 62

Entertainment - The Fact Sheet:
  • Expandable 40 x 120ft. built-in stage platform for arena-like load in/out results in cost efficiency and greater sell-able capacity.
  • Six large dressing rooms and unique, premium artist and VIP spaces. -    
  • A sell-able stadium capacity of up to 23,000 with a range of general admission and reserved seating configurations.
  • Increased festival capacities when using surrounding park grounds. 
  • Music events can be promoted by the venue on digital signs including three large freeway-visible building signs and multiple street level signs throughout the area (LA Coliseum, museums, USC campus, and surrounds).    
  • Ability to target market more than six million annual visitors to Expo Park including a portfolio of outdoor digital signs.
  • Extensive team database (over 170,000 and growing) of live entertainment consumers.
  • Six large dressing rooms and unique, premium artist and VIP spaces.    
  • Truck compound adjacent to the stadium.
  •  Loading dock accommodates three trucks simultaneously.
  • Truck ramp allows semi-trailer load in and load out at the stage.
  • Two additional loading docks with load levelers dedicated exclusively to concerts.    
  • Stage platform designed to accommodate major tour production.
  • Production guidelines are available upon request.
  • Electrical show power adequate to support all major shows (camlock 3 phase service, stage left, and stage right).
We are happy to tell you much more and arrange a meeting with the LAFC Special Events Department.

Thank you to Annie Benson and Ben Goldman from LAFC!

And Thank YOU for reading.

Monday, November 19, 2018

A Thanksgiving Message From Your Friends At EventWorks

Davis Firefighters Local 3494/
Little moments of beauty will occur even in the most dire situations. This Facebook post put a smile on our faces.
Davis Firefighters Local 3494 posted this image of a Davis fire strike team — Capt. Richard Moore and firefighters Matt Elder and Noah Easterday — getting up-close with a deer while searching for hotspots at the Camp Fire in Butte County. “During the most horrific fire in our wonderful state’s history we have this amazing moment,” the Facebook post said.

Do you feel overwhelmed by all the recent disasters as well? We give thanks that our EW crew is okay. Please find a list of ways to help victims below.

California news has been dominated by a horrific mass shooting and devastating fires since early November. The East Coast is dealing with the first deadly snow storm of the season and much of the Southeast is barely beginning to recover from hurricanes Florence and Michael; just to name a few disasters that took place in the continental USA.

Images of personal losses are heartbreaking and during this week especially we think about the many thousands of victims. 

Somehow overwhelming situations motivate us to go back to the basics and to reconnect with our communities, our closest friends and family.
We are taking stock of our good fortunes, however small the may have seemed, and feel thankful. 

Somehow the many spam posts blasting holiday shopping specials appear frivolous when so many have lost everything. Do we really need that new sweater?!
This year we will make donations instead.

Our friends at L.A. Tourism have issued a comprehensive list of reputable non-profit organizations that help California victims in the immediate aftermath.

Fund-raising efforts for Hurricane Michael and Florence victims are on-going.
The non-profit ranking organization Charity Navigator published a website with links to trustworthy charities for both causes. Here you will find ways to donate for specific needs, including children, education, animal welfare, medical needs and much more. Charity Navigator has vetted all listed organizations.


We hope that you all will spend a peaceful Thanksgiving with your loved ones. Take those planes, trains and automobiles to get home to a comforting meal. We cannot leave you without a little uplifting moment. 


Monday, November 12, 2018

Event Report: A Cohesive Entertainment Experience Supports A Successful Fundraising Gala.

Can YOU spot Ted and Kristen among the band members of POSTMODERN JUKEBOX? Let us know where they are on Facebook or Instagram.

The Event: an annual fundraising gala
Date: October 13, 2018
Location: City National Grove of Anaheim
Guest Count: 650

Our goal: produce a soiree that would support and enhance the fundraising mission of our client.
We immersed attendees in elegance, weaving a cohesive entertainment concept into every aspect of the event, from a guest's entrance to their departure.

Ted Bowers: "We have produced this event for several years. In the past, the main attraction was a big name entertainer's performance. This year the client wanted to change it up and shifted in format. The 2018 concept wove entertainment aspects into every segment of the evening, from entrance to departure.
We had custom tailored all elements of the experience to compliment the main performance, Postmodern Jukebox. Their energized show provided the icing on the cake."

Kristen Rensch: "We were very happy to work with the amazing Postmodern Jukebox who were contracted for the main stage show. Their style, mixing up modern music in retro arrangements, inspired our overall concept and design. 
We positioned a Living Red Carpet, a gorgeous atmospheric performer in an elegant red ball gown, the red train turning into the red carpet, at the entrance.
As soon as guests walked into the courtyard, they were welcomed by another photo opportunity: the Martini Glass Girl with the Giant Champagne Bottle. 
We placed Retro Hollywood Ushers in the reception area to provide guidance as well as more photo opportunities. Interactive Great Gatsby inspired entertainment surrounded guests throughout the reception."

"Once the reception ended, we turned the transition to the dinner into a surprise show element. A female vocalist appeared on a hidden catwalk above the main bar. The guests were noticeably moved by the song, "This Is Me" from The Greatest Showman. It grabbed their attention and drew them into the main venue. We had placed the Retro Hollywood Ushers at the doors to welcome guests. Our Ushers also amplified the energy during the silent auction."

The concept, a cohesive, emotionally engaging experience from beginning to end, proved to be successful.
We are very happy to report that our client exceeded the fundraising goal.
Thank you for reading!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Ted Bowers Reports from New Orleans

We all wanted to go. We provided support for an annual conference for a longtime client and friend we cherish in a city we love: New Orleans.
While hard at work, it is impossible not to get infected with New Orleans' Joie de Vivre; that talent to enjoy life in the midst of hard work.
Ted Bowers, Marcelo Cruz and Ben Majors were the lucky L.A. crew that got to go.
They are happy to share some highlights.

Ted Bowers: "When I walked through the lobby of the hotel following our general session I felt like I was in a time warp. The lobby was filled with ladies dressed in period attire. There were also hat stations, or rather fascinator stations, providing the perfect hat accessory. I got into a conversation with these three ladies who had stopped by on their way to the opera to celebrate "The Stormin' of the Sazerac Bar", an annual local event toasting a feminist milestone, the first time women were allowed unaccompanied in a drinking establishment,  that happened to overlap with our client's event. The attending women, all in period attire, had entered the historic bar following a jazz band in traditional second-line-style."


New Orleans is still one of the best places in the country to find amazing food in every neighborhood.
We made sure to indulge our taste buds with succulent sandwiches at Turkey and The Wolf.
Bon Appetit Magazine named Turkey and the Wolf the 2017 Best new Restaurant in the United States. 
 New Orleans born and bred artist Ken Cox created the mural art exterior. 


Ben Majors,  Derick Norwood, Jenna Fletcher, John Feinstein and Marcelo Cruz get into the spirit. 
The Museum of Death, also at home in Hollywood, features art works by serial killers, Manson Family photos, coffins, cannibalism exhibits and much more for the not-so-faint-of-heart. And perfect in the city that is home to Voodoo and the Vampire Diaries.


Marcelo Cruz is a huge jazz fan and he checked the listings prior to our arrival. We had the great luck of catching Ellis Marsalis and his Quintet at Snug Harbor. 
Two names are indelibly linked to New Orleans music: Marsalis and Neville. Members of both musical dynasties perform at Snug Harbor regularly. 

We leave you with a taste of great music by local jazz star Roderick Harper who is a stage regular with all famous New Orleans jazz bands.

Wishing you a great week.
Thank you for reading.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Monday, October 22, 2018

Events: The Importance Of Being Instagrammable

How do you judge an event's success? Watch how many attendees snap photos.

The client may or may not encourage hash-tagging and live social media integration, depending on the level of privacy they wish to maintain. However, in the age of Snapchat and Instagram, guests love to strike a pose and collect their memories with their smart phones. It is one way of ensuring great engagement.

Branded, ready-made photo backdrops are popping up everywhere. And we love them, too. Here Brynne with our very own City of Angels Wings, created for a La La Land event last year. 

Branded, social media savvy PR campaigns and activations abound. Why spend a lot of money on advertising when you can get the public to do it for you. Selfies on social media have been around since 2013 when the word was named "word of the year".
However, recognizable backdrops are nothing new. The granddaddy of all famous signs in the L.A. area, the HOLLYWOOD sign, was erected in 1923. The original "selfie" is even older, taken by Robert Cornelius in 1839.
Add smart phones to the mix and you have the perfect recipe for unforgettable moments and free PR.
Public attractions have been savvy at using our centuries-old human need to express ourselves. 
The City of Beverly Hills declared itself BOLD this summer to promote itself to a younger set of visitors. How did they get everyone's attention? They added selfie boxes on Rodeo Drive and adjacent streets and painted Instagram friendly murals on the walls of public parking structures along Santa Monica Boulevard. 
The L.A. County Museum of Art's Urban Light is one of the most famous selfie backdrops in the world, recognized by international travelers from everywhere. Melrose Avenue remains relevant as a must-see selfie stop for young global visitors. 
While many critics had hoped the endless stream would just have its 15 minutes, it seems the selfie trend is here to stay.

It is a driving force in tourism and events.
We love to add creativity and function to this aspect.
A little earlier this year we were tasked to design the experience around a press conference and VIP/Public Reception to celebrate the opening of an art installation.

Creative Director Kate Brack: "We were challenged to create an environment that framed the art installation and distinct character of the existing interior design. It was a thrill to come up with minimal, striking details that fulfilled multiple roles; at once providing a professional engagement for the press conference, an elegant urban space for the VIP reception and a social media friendly environment for the public event."

The simple gold metal chain drape served many purposes:  It hid the event specific coat check storage area. The drape became a popular selfie backdrop and served in multiple functions on both days.
We employed it as a backdrop for the speaker stage at the press conference, the DJ stage and as hallway divider and decor. Lighting effects were used to enhance the effect.

Incentive and Reward travel has become an immersive, more personal experience through the integration of social media.
L.A. Stories Tour designs custom programs that deliver that enhanced experience.
We spoke to David House, Executive Director, Grayline SOCAL and Founder of L.A. Stories Tour.
"I have 15 years experience in the entertainment and touring industries and I had been observing tourists all these years. Los Angeles is a top destination and traditional companies will take you to the world famous attractions by bus but I did not see them catering to new trends and delivering what people actually want now. Visitors want to be engaged. They want to connect and get an authentic, personal experience.
When I started L.A. Stories the intention was to deliver that and to explain why Los Angeles is such an amazing city. We will show you the famous sites you want to see but in a much more experiential, immersive manner. For starters, we will take you off the bus. We deliver gentle walking tours.
Our content is a lot more in depth. You won't find the information on Wikipedia. We have done enormous background research. We all work in the entertainment industry as well and our friends share information no one else has access to. We can design complete custom tours and we offer two public tours that engage anyone from age 16 to 80 so you don't necessarily have to take selfies. Our Sunset Boulevard tour focuses on more historical anecdotes while our Melrose tour is really a selfie dream which even includes our own LA Stories Latte or ice coffee, complete with the logo etched in the froth. We take visitors to the famous selfie spots but while these provide an personal element we make sure to enhance the tour with a lot of entertaining information that will explain to guests the significance of Melrose in pop culture and local history.
Our tours are local, current, relevant and entertaining. Last but not least, our tours are set to carefully choreographed soundtracks, in order to enhance the experience, whisk you away in to another world and hopefully trigger some happy memories when guests hear the song again in the future. It's more immersive than your average tour.
We get great responses from corporate clients. Our tours are ideal as company outings or as an activity during a business program. We work directly with destination management companies to design custom experiences for their guests. We can adapt to budget, number of guests and time frame. We understand that a corporate client has a goal and we make sure to deliver the right content and message. 
Attendees want to engage and experience. Selfies are part of that but it also takes a lot more effort, labor and passion to deliver an informative tour that guests will remember."

Shoot us a selfie by tagging us on Instagram or Facebook.

Thank you for reading!

Monday, October 15, 2018

Event Report: Check Out Our "Action Bar"

This client loves to surprise his young guests with new, exciting aspects during the annual Closing Party. We upped the ante once again.

The Event: A Closing Night Party
Event Date: September 2018
Event Time: 6-11PM
Event Location: A Ballroom in Southern California

We have done aerial sommeliers, atmospheric acrobats and stage shows enhanced by close proximity pyrotechnics and aerial acrobats. We have taken branded decor to new immersive levels with LED Towers and synchronized 360 degree surround projection.
This last month we had to surprise the guests once again.

We had added entertainment to every aspect of the evening.

For the closing Dance Party we introduced the Action Bar: a double trampoline and five performers, surrounded by 8' long black bars to turn the central bar from gathering point into a show element.

Brynne Peña: “Our intention with the Trampoline Wall was two-fold:  entertainment and branding.  Given the large size of the wall itself, it provided the perfect application for conference-specific branding.  By placing it in the center of the room and using the double-trampoline, it meant the visuals were viewable from anywhere within the ballroom.  From there we timed out the performances in line with key moments of the evening – 15 minutes after doors to ensure enough guests were in the room, halfway through the event to keep the momentum going, and again 30 minutes from the end of the evening with a complete costume change that incorporated LED accents to the jumpers outfits.  There were even light sabers involved for a brief moment!
You know you have a hit when guests immediately pull out their phones to record!”

  Please enjoy this very short clip, edited for client anonymity and musical copyrights.

Monday, October 8, 2018

Event Design Trend: Palm Trees Warm the Winter Season

Who says you can't wear white after Labor Day?
We checked in with our Creative Director Kate Brack.
Kate loves the renaissance of all things palm tree, now trending year-round.
Here a digital rendering of our Branching Communal Table with Palm Frond enhancements.

Faithful readers may have noticed that we love working in tropical locations. Our production work frequently takes us to Hawaii, Southern Florida or Mexico. We live under palm trees and love to work under them, too.
Palm leaf motives have been popular for decades. The famous Beverly Hills Hotel introduced palm tree print wallpaper in 1942 with Don Loper's design. Tropical prints have made a fashion come back this year and even over-sized pool decor has taken the form of pineapples and pink flamingos.
They do add a sense of vacation and sunshine to any affair and Kate advises that cold weather and a winter season do not have to put an end to our love of tropical trends.

Kate Brack: "The retro palm chic trend continues to hold strong even as we dive into the holiday months. Pairing sleek sapphire blues and rose gold tones against the rich patterns helps translate this look from summer surf to tropical holiday. Hawaii in January anyone? Pair our unique branching high top communal tables with this look and you have décor gold. Adding height and excitement to the room, these tables act as a conversation starter and easy Instagram-able moment. This key enhancement gives your event a heightened look without the costly confines of rigging or floor supported truss."

Feeling warmer already?

Thank you for reading!

Monday, October 1, 2018

Event Report: Ted Bowers Reports From TEDxPasadena

Ted Bowers with Heather Heimerl Brunold | Executive Director | Licensee, Words2Action | TEDxPasadena

We absolutely loved working in our backyard, Pasadena, CA, for this inspiring, uplifting event: TEDxPasadena 2018 -
Transform Words to Action.

Date: September 22, 2018
Location: The Huntington Library
Our Task: staging, lighting and sound as part of comprehensive technical support for the one-day conference featuring 17 individual speakers.

Ted Bowers: "The tag line "a day dedicated to transforming the future, and putting words to action" captures the essence of this event. TEDxPasadena's Executive Director Heather Heimerl Brunold, M.Ed., Ed.D. has done an incredible job organizing these events since 2015. Besides the large all-day annual conference, smaller salon events take place throughout the year. Since it's inception the scope of the all volunteer-managed conference has grown considerably. For the first time this year, they decided to hire us to assist with the technical aspects. It was a pleasure to work with Heather and the TEDx Team of wonderful, motivated people."

Janet Elkins: "I was very inspired by W2A's sponsorship program for young women in the Pasadena area. W2A is Heather's non-profit organization that puts on the TEDxPasadena events. During the conference Ted and I were both particularly moved by speaker Timothy Alexander. As a student he was ranked 8th best high school football player in Alabama. Colleges from all over the country wanted him. But then a car accident in 2006 changed everything. Timothy sustained injuries that left him paralyzed from the neck on down. His bio describes best how he succeeded in life in spite of the accident."

Timothy was left to find his purpose in life while paralyzed. After the accident, he went on to graduate from the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), where he double majored in Criminal Justice and Communication Management. He later earned a Master’s degree in Communication Management. Not only was he successful in his studies, but he was an inspiration to fellow students on the UAB campus. He was also the first paraplegic to receive a football scholarship.
However, his proudest moment came in July 2016. For the first time since being paralyzed, Timothy was able to stand up on his own while on the football field. This caught the eye of major news publications including ABC National News, TMZ Sports, and many others. Timothy was the recipient of an Emmy Award in January 2017 as the Sports Program Feature: for the 31st Midsouth Regional Emmy Awards of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
Timothy is a living example of his signature phrase, “We don’t need it to be easy, we just need it to be possible.”

Janet: "His session was incredible. The room was filled to capacity and the whole audience hung on to every word. Everyone was mesmerized by his incredible story of perseverance. His speech is truly unforgettable."

Ted Bowers: "As we were working we could not attend all the sessions but we witnessed the overall reaction of the attendees. The atmosphere was very upbeat and the energy was palpable. They loved the large variety in the speakers' backgrounds. While some were more spiritually encouraging and motivating, others like for instance Dr. Rene Sotelo, Dana Budzyn or Nancy Baker Cahill provided some very practical advice on putting words to action. Let's face it. Many of us have plans and good intentions but never turn that into action. TRANSFORM was very informative and motivating in that regard."

 Executive Director Heather Heimerl Brunold, M.Ed., Ed.D explains why the volunteer-work based non-profit organization hired EventWorks.

"First and foremost EventWorks offered me peace of mind. I knew from the get go of hiring them that I was in excellent hands. The guidance that Janet and Ted gave virtually before we even arrived on site, over the months of planning, was incredibly full of expertise and professionalism and wisdom that I don't have. I am essentially a spiritual guide for my community and we have to put on this huge event that is not in my wheel house. To be able to have partners like EventWorks pulled all of the lose threads together. To be able to create such a seamless production reconfirmed that we made the right decision to get professional help. The team they brought on the day of the event was masterful. I can't praise the human beings that were there enough. Their egos were never in the way of what needed to happen. They were humble and kind and patient and forgiving. They thought of things my team of volunteers could never think of. They brought knowledge to the inter-weaving of having a beautifully done production that we just don't have. You asked me for only a paragraph about the ROI but I could write a novel."

It was a pleasure to bring technical know-how to the table and to work for such a wonderful team of really skilled, creative, motivated, kind and positive people. 

Please visit their website: 
Furthermore Heather Heimerl Brunold's non-profit organization Words2Action sponsors young women to attend educational salons and TEDxPasadena events. 

Words2Action (W2A) the producers of TEDxPasadena, provide sponsorships for girls from Pasadena and surrounding areas ages 13-18.
Sponsorships include free attendance to TEDxPasadena as well as the chance to participate in several unique Words2Action opportunities throughout the year. This includes personalized curriculum inspired by the TED Red Circle, as well as local mentorships and internships. Participants will learn to transform spoken word into tangible action, one idea at a time.

We could not resist this photo opportunity! 

Thank you for reading.

Monday, September 24, 2018

New Event Location Report: The London WeHo Roof Top Venues Will Blow Your Mind!

Mary Spellerberg, Associate Director of Sales, and Alisa Walsh 

It may be fall in most of the country but summer continues in Southern California.
Alisa Walsh recently visited the newly remodeled roof top location right off the legendary Sunset Boulevard. The London West Hollywood at Beverly Hills offers three roof top space possibilities with pools and views!  The London Penthouse is the largest suite in Los Angeles.
We can't wait to produce an event in this luxurious, hip space overlooking the L.A. skyline and Hollywood Hills. The best season for clear skies and amazing views is about to start.

Alisa Walsh: "I am accustomed to seeing impressive sites in Los Angeles. However, the London West Hollywood offers three different gorgeous roof top spaces for any size and style of event. The expanse, location and level of luxury of the newly remodeled Penthouse Suite at The London West Hollywood at Beverly Hills definitely raise the bar.
L.A. skies are the clearest from October to late April. It's the best time to use this year-round venue."

Photos don't do it justice. Please click to enjoy the PENTHOUSE Walkthrough VR Tour. You can access both levels of the penthouse, suite and rooftop pool.

300 Reception
LA’s largest Penthouse is an extraordinary suite for relaxation, meetings or private events. Revel in over 11,000 square feet of glamorous surroundings across two floors. The personal rooftop deck takes your event to new heights, offering a complement of dedicated places for drinks, lounging, dining, reclining or relaxing by the fire pit, with LA vistas surrounding you.

The London Hotel Penthouse inspired by Vivienne Westwood 

The 10th floor Penthouse Suite has been designed to feel grand and spacious, while at the same time being intimate and personal, incorporating Vivienne Westwood fabrics, wall coverings, cushions and artwork. On entering, one is welcomed into the large Salon, a fantastic entertaining space with polished stone floors, bespoke cabinetry, large corner sofas, rich materials, feature furniture pieces and Vivienne Westwood fabrics to cushions and feature chair upholstery. The large central rug uses an iconic Westwood pattern to great effect and anchors the furniture and lighting. The salon is framed on each side by large atriums that draw light down into the space. The long back wall has a built-in bookcase, backed with verre eglomise mirror panels, that sparkle and add depth to an already atmospheric space. The Master Bedroom Suite is a series of luxurious spaces. First the bedroom, with its coffered ceiling and contemporary take on a  four poster bed, then the mirrored dressing room with Westwood wall covering to the wardrobe doors and finally the grand marble bathroom with its ceiling light slot, casting shadows down onto the central free standing bathtub with shuttered concrete feature finish to the wall behind. Also within the Suite is a media/family room, with dark fabrics and a timber lined ceiling, that has feature walls using a Westwood wall covering design, as well as several Westwood cushions to the large corner sofa, while on the opposite side is a brighter dining room and adjoining pantry. The artwork within the Penthouse is a collection of stunning Vivienne Westwood scarves that have been taken out of the archives, these radiate the vibrancy and fun of Westwood that blends perfectly with an illustrious Suite as this is. The crowning glory is a magnificent roof terrace that affords fabulous views up to the hills and across the city beyond. The terrace has a large mixed seating area, grouped around a linear fire pit with an adjoining dining and outdoor kitchen. All these design elements, when combined, make for a unique entertaining venue, for both night and day.

Source: The London Hotel

How many iconic British decor items can you spot in the media room?

The London Penthouse Suite Features

The largest suite in Los Angeles, with over 11,000 square feet of living space

5,000-square-foot rooftop deck with 360-degree views

2,000-square-foot Grand Salon

Two en-suite bedrooms

Two oversized spa-like bathrooms with soaking tub and dual shower heads

Private dressing area with mirrored closets

Oversized work desk and complimentary high-speed internet access

iHome iPod docking stations and LG flat screen televisions

Keurig coffee maker with complimentary specialty coffees and teas

Personal wet bar

Complimentary European-style continental breakfast 

Complimentary calls to London

Maximum occupancy: 4

Panorama view of the suite on the first level of the two-floor suite.

But wait, there is more!

400 Reception | 180 Dinner & Dancing
Revel in 3,800 square feet of glamorous, private rooftop space with views of Beverly Hills and beyond. A custom-fit tent with retractable sidewalls complements Rooftop West November through March.

Please click to view the Walkthrough VR Tour.

Need something smaller?
300 Reception
The stunning rooftop pool is a chic, open-air option for movie premiere after-parties and other large-scale events. Indulge in panoramic views for the Los Angeles skyline and Hollywood Hills, plush lounge chairs with carved teak benches, white-marble fire pit, a relaxing wall sized water feature, four luxury cabanas with LCD TVs and mini refrigerators and a multi-level wooden deck.

Please click to visit the VR Walkthrough Tour.
La-La Land:

What are the chances of meeting a celebrity or two? Fairly high, judging by thelondonweho Instagram feed. The property is known to attract the A-list of Hollywood and the music industry.

Alisa Walsh: "Obviously, the site also offers indoor locations on par with this level of hip luxury. Sunset Boulevard in West Hollywood has been undergoing a transformation in the most recent years. Expansion has brought new hotels. Visitors can access many bars and restaurants along a pedestrian friendly, world famous boulevard. West Hollywood is ready for its close-up."

EventWorks' Vice President Kristen Rensch lives in the neighborhood.
Call us, we will be happy to show you around.