Friday, September 7, 2012

What Events can Learn from So You Think You Can Dance

I have been an unadulterated fan of every iteration of So You Think You Can Dance since the beginning, for many reasons. I can share it with my family, it has reintroduced the magic of expression through dance to a (jaded) audience, it has given opportunity to so many young people, and then it just goes beyond...

Here are some of the things I think event producers can take away from this show
  1. Emotional connections matter - between the performers, from performers to audience, from what is seen and heard to what is felt by the audience (yes we have the potential to create connections)
  2. Production matters. They get the video, the settings, the lighting, the sets - they are always right.
  3. Lighting designers - great, amazing lighting designers, are GOLD.
  4. Music sets the tone. Background, live, feature performance - it is naturally so dependant on the ambience you want to create, but always, always consider the soundscaping.
  5. Costumes - performers, staff, getting the attendees to participate in costuming (if you haven't seen it, there is magic in Diner en Blanc) - even adding a prop box - brings people into the spirit of the event. Consider it.
  6. Surprise. I have just blogged on the potential effects of positve surprise and we want as guests to be surprised, delighted, amazed when we attend events.
While an argument was made on a recent #eventprofs Twitter chat that perhaps we do often seek the ordinary -  I would argue, and it was noted that perhaps it is more relevant for meetings and tradeshows than "special" events, and I would argue also for the incentive events you want to create delightful surprise.  Let's use the lessons above and continue to create the special.

Creating special does not always require large budgets, but it does require thoughtful design, and let's continue to embrace and practice this.

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