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Barfoot & Thompson - 90th Anniversary Dinner 2013

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Experience Group was invited to develop a proposal for Barfoot & Thompson to celebrate 90 years in business in 2013. 

The event brief was to create an unforgettable experience for over 3500 guests including all past and present Barfoot & Thompson agents. This was an impressive milestone and Barfoot & Thompson wanted to acknowledge everyone's special contribution in making Barfoot & Thompson the success it is today.

The concept presented, and adopted by the client, was to undertake the biggest, seated formal gala dinner event ever held in Auckland.  The result was a fully themed, gala dinner extravaganza focused on 'the people' of Barfoot & Thompson,

Invited guests were treated to a spectacular 360-degree projection show which allowed for an immersive and interactive environment that not only recounted the rich history and accomplishments of the company, but also showcased exciting and stimulating entertainment backed up by strong, clear sound and visual content.  These key features made the celebration of Barfoot & Thompson's 90th birthday celebration an intimate and nostalgic evening, enjoyed immensely by all the invited guests.

The technical aspect of this event meant a very high spec team needed to be put into place and managed by Experience Group.  Planning meetings, site visits, hire/build elements including fabrication details for custom requirements, rigging, projection, studio formatting, video and camera imaging added up to over 100 hours of consultation.  The venue was totally lined with black draping and elegant gobo light fittings were used to cover all tables and a high end intelligent moving light design was set up for the central stage.  

The 8 m high 360-degree screen created a seamless background of various scenic and iconic landmarks of New Zealand around all 4 walls of the ASB Showground's as live musicians welcomed the guests with an animated ensemble. The 'hero' component of this was the timeline of the family history from 1923 to 2013. 

During a live performance of the New Zealand's national anthem, by diva Lizzie Marvelly, the projections changed into waving flags, accompanying the patriotic vibe. To ensure that all guests around the room were able to witness the activities on stage, live feed broadcasting was displayed on the screens. As the familiar tune of the Happy Birthday Song was played during the cake-cutting ceremony, the images onscreen transformed into large birthday candles that created an immersive environment for the guests who joined in the tradition of blowing out the candles. Projections of an impressive fireworks display ended the evening's celebrations with a literal big bang!

The night was a huge success, and Barfoot & Thompson were thrilled with the event, as well as the subsequent outstanding feedback they received from those who attended.

SKYCITY Catering & Events were appointed the mammoth task of delivering quality food and beverage to the largest gala dinner, in one venue, that has been seen in New Zealand.  SKYCITY performed at their ultimate best and their logistical planning and offsite catering operations greatly added to the success of the night.

'SKYCITY Catering & Events worked with the Experience Group to deliver the Barfoot & Thompson 90th Birthday Celebration Dinner at the ASB Showground's on March 9th, 2013.

We found the Experience Group to be professional, efficient and easy to work with throughout the planning and execution of the event. The Experience Group have extremely high standard for their clients and set SYKCITY Catering & Events strict KPI's to achieve on the night of the event.

The Experience Group always have their client's needs at the forefront and strive to exceed expectations. Because of this the Barfoot and Thompson 90th Birthday Celebration Dinner was a huge success'.

Warren Bias

Executive Manager SKYCITY Catering & Events

SKYCITY Entertainment Group



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