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The Chicago Community Trust
95th Anniversary Gala
CHALLENGE On October 12, 2010, the Chicago Community Trust celebrated its 95th anniversary at the Harris Theater with a multimedia mixture of live entertainment and video vignettes from trust grant recipients. Bill Kurtis hosted the event, which was produced by Donna LaPietra and Scott Jacobs at Kurtis Productions.
SOLUTION Show Department was pleased to be called on to provide staging support for this high profile gala event. 800 donors and trust friends were treated to an evening of marching bands, penguins, dancers, and testimonials capped off by a speech by New York Times columnist David Brooks.
Custom 3D Video Production
Show Department’s COO Jeff Facklis was the technical director and stage manager for the event. Given the scope of the show and that there were so many elements involved, the biggest challenge was that everything happened within a single day. Load-in was in the morning. Rehearsal by noon. Doors opened at six o’clock.
A high point of the evening was the 3-D projection of a tribute to “Dance in Chicago” designed and directed by Fred Blurton, of Fred Blurton Productions. With video of the various dance companies projected against Chicago cityscapes, Blurton showed two dancers from the Joffrey Ballet dancing across Buckingham Fountain, under the Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier, down LaSalle Street, and in front of the Chicago Theater.
3-D glasses were handed out to the 800 guests and Show Department used special projection to display the image on a custom 22-foot projection screen design by manufacturing division, The Screen Works.
“A lot of thought and production went into the making the videos authentic and real,” explained Jacobs, “so we wanted to make sure, technically, they’d have the right impact. That’s where Show Department really stepped up. Everything was pristine HD-quality on screens that ranged as big as 22 feet wide. The 3-D dance video had a beautifully designed sound track. Both shows were terrific, but the staging made them dynamic and memorable. Honestly, seeing the videos projected at that level of quality was breath-taking.”
“The show was absolutely wonderful!” raved Donna LaPietra. “Everyone involved should be extremely proud of the quality of the production. I don’t know how we could have reached that high level without Show Department and Resolution as partners in this endeavor.”