Mini Pink Pianos
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Honens Hullabaloo was a reception style fundraising gala created to drive awareness and much needed funding for the renowned Honens International Piano Competition and Festival Series. It featured two parallel events for two varying demographics. Themed around New York City in the 70’s we created both an “Uptown” and “Downtown” experience to cater to VIP’s and up and coming influencers in the city. The event drew in over 475 guests including 160 VIP’s to help raise funds for Honens.
Held at Telus Spark, a world-class science museum just minutes outside of downtown Calgary that ignites and intrigues excitement for all of its guests, the event’s theme married perfectly with the venue. Hullabal0o began at 6PM for VIPs and 8PM for the remainder of the guests and ran until way past midnight.
The flow of the evening ensured that we captivated each audience in relevant ways, focusing on the piano competition and Honen’s within their loyal supporters and basically getting the name visible and the organization talked about in their new efforts.
The VIP experience was created to encourage dialogue about the competition itself, honour where the competition came from, while the general experience was created to showcase music and cool factor. Fundraising efforts were made during a live auction, silent auction, ticket sales and donations.
The unique silent auction was set in the middle of the room, lit with construction lights, emphasizing the construction that was happening in Manhattan at that time. Items were donated by local philanthropists and supporters of Honens. Awareness was the key objective and this was achieved.
Through our theme of gritty 1970’s New York we developed creative around the iconic club CBGB. We were inspired by bands and like The Ramones, Blondie and Iggy Pop and created video assets that encouraged guests to dress the part.
We used scaffolding sections and custom pieces to create five distinct areas of New York: Chelsea flower market, the piers, the meatpacking district, the fashion district and the theatre district. Each of these five districts were designed with props from the Glenbow museum and Theatre Calgary collections. These scaffold structures were mobile, built and dressed in the additional ballroom space and rolled out for the event to take place.
We paired two restaurants with each district and guests were enticed to travel through the gritty city. Top chef’s each prepared fare including rock crab sushi rolls, gourmet hot dogs, spicy tuna sashimi, Mexican pork canapes, oysters and pulled pork taco’s. A 1970’s VW bus was used as a photo booth and via #hullabaloo they could instantly upload the photo onto social media. The event closed with a live performance of Lou Reed’s entire ‘Transformer’ album.
As Hullabaloo was a stand-up reception we came up with some interesting ideas to raise funds. Actors dressed in trench coats would approach a guest and flash them! Inside were envelopes that could be purchased “want to buy a watch?” each envelope had a surprise prize! Think of the street vendors on Canal street selling designer knock offs.
June 06, 2015