A girl only turns 16 once, and it wasn’t enough for DaVinci Fusion to ensure that a client’s Sweet 16 party proved to be one of the happiest, most memorable days of her life. Northern California’s premiere event production company had to create the event with an MTV video crew looking over its shoulder for two weeks.
DaVinci Fusion was charged with planning and carrying out the Sweet 16 party for a Hillsboro, California resident in the newly-built Silicon Valley Four Seasons in Palo Alto. At the same time, a two-camera crew from MTV followed DaVinci Fusion creatives to document the process for a segment of its series, My Super Sweet 16.
The party actually consisted of two side-by-side events. The Sweet 16 party acknowledged the celebrant’s love of all things Christian Dior with a Dior Diva and Paris nightclub theme while next door, the young guests’ parents were entertained with a Twilight Garden Party.
The MTV shoot made the already complex double party-planning process even more so with a daily need to tape activities leading up to the big event. What would normally have been simple phone calls to find models and talent DaVinci Fusion has worked with before, was turned into full-blown casting sessions and auditions to make for more compelling television. When the DaVinci Fusion-client decision-making process proved to be too laid back to interest viewers, the producers sought to stir things up for greater audience appeal.
To create the Paris nightclub of a Dior Diva’s dreams, DaVinci Fusion covered the walls of the grand ballroom with layers of deeply-pleated white chiffon which camouflaged the room’s corporate-looking dark wood paneling and transformed the 83x45-foot space into a soft, feminine environment.
A pink and white palette echoed the party invitations. At one end of the ballroom a little staircase with embedded pink lights led to a stage with a 15-foot tall model of the Arc de Triomphe. At the other end of the room a 16-foot truss arch was constructed for aerial circus acts, which formed part of the evening’s entertainment.
One long wall of the ballroom furnished the background for the amazing Sweet 16 cake, which was shaped like a Paris traveler’s pile of luggage with a mini Arc de Triomphe perched on top. A 10-foot wide pink neon sign saluted the lucky birthday girl. The other wall was graced with ice sculptures of the Eiffel Tower and a massive seafood display.
Arriving guests, about 100 young people, were greeted by a mime. The birthday celebrant, who made her entrance through costumed cancan dancers and models clad in J’Adore Nicole T-shirts, appeared in a cloud of special-effects smoke to thank her guests for attending. At the conclusion of her welcome, confetti canons shot pink tissue streamers and pink metallic stars into the air.
DaVinci Fusion designed the settings for the cocktail tables encircling a central dance floor. The tables were covered with pink iridescent taffeta with centerpieces of pink roses in mirrored-tile containers. Transparent acrylic Louis XVI Ghost chairs provided seating. A white leather rondele banquette, whose elevated center was filled with hot pink roses, offered additional seating.
DaVinci Fusion lit the room with projected stars sprinkled on the white drapery. Moving lights added glitz and energy to the dance floor, while spots highlighted the aerial circus performers and guest hip hop artist Keak Da Sneak. The DaVinci cancan dancers and models re-emerged to circulate among the guests dressed in Brigitte Bardot wigs and striped tops, constantly ‘stiring it up. ‘
Meanwhile, about 70 adults were treated to a Twilight Garden Party next door. Ivy- and bougainvilla-covered trellises formed the background for the bar and two buffet tables while stone lions, obelisks, potted Kentia palms, nest ferns, box hedges, and a three-tiered fountain enhanced the garden-like atmosphere. Urns overflowed with powder-puff pink roses; soft lighting and candles added a romantic touch.
DaVinci Fusion dressed the tables in this room with green iridescent taffeta and powder-puff pink rose topiaries. Black metal garden chairs with woven wicker seats and green satin cushions provided seating.
An event of this size would usually have taken DaVinci Fusion about three months to plan. The company turned around the double parties in just three weeks with the added pressure of an MTV camera crew on hand for two of those weeks. It’s estimated that DaVinci Fusion’s administrative hours doubled to accommodate the needs of the network’s video shoots. The party was installed in just seven hours, two days would have been a more comfortable turnover for the ballrooms under normal circumstances.
Nine cameras from MTV attended the parties to capture the result of DaVinci Fusion’s careful planning and signature creative touch.