The GLAAD ceremony brought together attendees, corporate partners and celebrities to recognize outstanding representations of the LGBT community in the media and GLAAD's goal to achieve full equality. Hosted by Andy Cohen, the gala honored Ricky Martin with the Vito Russo Award and Russell Simmons with the Excellence in Media Award; other winners included Tina Fey, for an episode of "30 Rock," and the HBO series "True Blood."
"It was a combined effort between our East and West Coast teams," says Michael T. May, senior account executive at VAI's Nashville office. "We provided support in the main Broadway Ballroom as well as some ancillary rooms including the reception, after party and step-and-repeat area. It wouldn't have been possible without good teamwork."
"We love partnering with Scharff Weisberg and VAI," says Valentina Fanfani, the event producer with Tencue Productions, Berkeley, California. "The event worked out well for everyone."
Tencue Productions was also challenged by the close quarters of the main ballroom which sat 1,370 people. "We came up with a different design that incorporated the atmosphere of the ballroom using two screens that matched the angles of the proscenium," she explains. "The screens were almost like a book standing up on a table - they formed an extreme angle that everyone was worried about. But Scharff Weisberg and VAI really rose to the challenge and made those angles work."
"We supplied two 15x20-foot Stumpfl rear projection screens, a Barco Encore screen controller, a pair of Encore 3ME VP switching modules and four Christie S+16K DLP projectors," says Andy Muller, Sr. Project Manager at Scharff Weisberg. "We also furnished a Sony DXC-D50 three-camera system, Sony DVCAM player/recorders, AJA KiPro digital recorders, an SDI Panasonic 400 1ME switcher and support for the client's Mac presentation computer." In addition, the companies provided a Barco R6 prompter screen in the back of the room and four 50-inch plasma monitors for the guests.
Scharff Weisberg and VAI augmented existing house lighting and audio systems in the Broadway Ballroom with VARI*LITE 3500 spots and 2500 spots and washes, Color Kinetics ColorBlaze 72-inch LEDs, ARRI 1K fresnels, a Yamaha PM 5-D digital audio console and Meyer speakers and subwoofers.
As May points out, the companies also supplied gear for many other areas at the venue, including NEC plasma monitors for the green room and after party in the Westside Ballroom; audio and DJ equipment for the reception and after party; and an array of lighting fixtures for the celebrity area, donor sponsor area, red carpet/step and repeat, press photo area, silent auction, VIP bar/reception area and after party.
They also furnished audio equipment, NEC 50-inch plasmas and a complement of lighting fixtures for the youth party in the Astor Ballroom.
"The client loved the design of the main ballroom, and the show was perfection," sums up Fanfani. "Scharff Weisberg and VAI provided one of the best crews I've ever worked with. They were great at organizing everyone and getting everything done - and their bicoastal operation made it handy for working with my company and the client in California and the venue, whose space they knew well, in New York."
Augmenting inhouse systems was also a good decision. "It made the install easier," she says. "Because Scharff Weisberg knew the gear at the hotel, it went flawlessly. They made the whole process simple."
Scharff Weisberg and Video Applications are collaborating partners to clients requiring unique and imaginative solutions for their event, spectacle and large-meeting lighting, sound and video needs whether local, national or worldwide. For more information visit www.scharffweisberg.com or www.videoapps.com.