BC Event Management Produces Inaugural Event for the New Vancouver Convention Centre

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Vancouver-based BC Event Management produced the opening event for the new Vancouver Convention Centre (VCC) on April 3, 2009. The VCC looked to award-winning producer David Clark and his team to creatively showcase the varied capabilities of their new world-class convention space.

It was an exciting opportunity to be the convention centre's first event production company to execute an ambitious technical plan that would test the building's engineering systems, rigging and operational potential.

Vancouver-based BC Event Management produced the opening event for the new Vancouver Convention Centre (VCC) on April 3, 2009. The VCC looked to award-winning producer David Clark and his team to creatively showcase the varied capabilities of their new world-class convention space. 2000 VIP guests were treated to a progressive event that began with an exciting reveal in the exhibition hall and culminated with a dramatic spectacle in Canada's largest convention centre ballroom.

VCC's new water inspired brand identity was introduced through a multimedia experience carried throughout the evening with innovative, high definition projection and lighting design. The welcome reception area featured floor-to-ceiling white shimmering drape textured with cool blue, water-inspired lighting. A 5000-pound motorboat and Hummer were suspended to demonstrate the ceiling's rigging capabilities.

The Exhibition Hall was first darkened and then, with the opening of a faux wall, revealed a production number that included: 4 helium balloon lights disappearing into the distance; dramatic sequential lighting of scores of displays; chasing indoor pyrotechnics; and 20 performers on rollerblades carrying tall banners.

BCEM designed the Hall to highlight the value-added logistical capabilities from a potential exhibitors' perspective. Build-out 'decor' included displays from traditional convention clients including logging rigs; mining trucks; a horticultural display; a Sikorsky helicopter; and oversized industrial equipment.    

The convention centre's iconic waterfront setting spills from the ballroom's sound proof, 45-foot floor-to-ceiling windows. Tugboats and a fire boat performed a water-filled aquatic 'ballet'.

To capitalize on the ballroom's 45-55 feet of ceiling heights a custom 150x30 foot MegaVideo projection screen was suspended over the south wall of the ballroom. It featured high definition water imagery specially filmed for the event, along with other BC coastal imagery. Key messaging, branding and lighting were projected onto a 16-foot diameter sphere and onto four 27-foot high stage curtains.

The high-energy evening showcased 150 performers. Various jazz ensembles, classical solo artists and cirque acts were strategically placed throughout two levels of the Vancouver Convention Centre to create seamless ambience in prefunction areas leading to various British Columbia themed lounges, food and bar stations.

In the ballroom contemporary aerial cirque acrobats were presented at various transitional spaces in the ballroom including some suspended inside translucent spheres. An impressive 33-foot high aluminum marionette came to life, manipulated by six 'puppeteers' and interacted with the guests. A police helicopter hovered and cast its searchlights through the ballroom window, lighting up a levitating drummer, and thrilled guests. The levitating drummer introduced a BCEM signature performance of 100 drummers creating an international world beat.

Eight performance tiers were created on four 27-foot high towers. Each tier was revealed one at a time to showcase authentic Indian, Brazilian, First Nations, Scottish, and African drum performers who wowed the audience with a synchronized extravaganza that brought gasps from the audience.

The closer for the evening featured BCEM's signature fireworks finale outside the view window.

"We were honored to participate in this landmark event. In keeping with the significance of the occasion, BCEM collaborated closely with VCC to create an engaging multi-layered event that maximized and leveraged every facet of the building's natural setting and state-of-the-art capabilities. " Said David Clark, president of BC Event Management. "It was an exciting opportunity to be the convention centre's first event production company to execute an ambitious technical plan that would test the building's engineering systems, rigging and operational potential."

About BC Event Management
BC Event Management (BCEM) specializes in exhibit design, opening ceremonies, award ceremonies, conference management, custom choreographed shows, and technically demanding productions of all kinds.

For more information, please call 1-604-696-1234 or visit the BC Event Management website at http://www.bceventmanagement.com.

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Darren Dreger
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