Amplifying to the Perfect Volume for Live Events


Amplifying to the Perfect Volume for Live Events

Understanding the audience, the client, and the tone of the event is essential in creating experiences s resonate.

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Here at Barbershop Films, we hold many strong convictions: each customer is a VIP and will be treated as such; dandelions are edible and under-utilized as side dishes; Sartre’s ideas of conformity versus authenticity in Being and Nothingness are a bit undercooked; and there’s definitely aliens in Roswell – these being a few of our most entrenched.

We also believe that the atmosphere and design of any event or gathering can be greatly heightened by a thoughtfully constructed video to share with your attendees (regardless of how many glasses of bubbly and cucumber sandwiches they’ve managed to throw back). Barbershop Films has been fortunate to produce creative and emotionally moving content for a wide range of live events, galas, award shows, openings, and fundraisers. We have worked with organizations like Audi Downtown Vancouver, the BC Children’s Hospital, the International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society, and WBM Technologies to create cinematic and poignant moments at their events.

“Getting a great video for an event requires more than just creating a video in a vacuum. We have to consider the context of the audience and the event, what comes before and after the video, and truly what type of experience they are trying to create,” said Derek Baxter, Senior Producer with Barbershop Films.

“We have enough experience with producing kinds of videos that we know to ask the right questions, to really make sure the client is getting something that elevates the experience at their event.”

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Remember that James Bond or Mission: Impossible movie where Tom Craig/Daniel Cruise jumped off a gorgeous new building, wearing a gorgeous tux, and landed in a gorgeous car? (Which movie exactly? It doesn’t matter. It’s all of them). This was the inspiration for the cinematic heist video we created for the grand opening of Audi Downtown Vancouver. Our client, the Dilawri Automotive Group, wanted a standout video that not only made the grand opening feel like the world premiere of major movie but would also prove to the stakeholders present that our client knew how to properly treat their illustrious brand. So we wrote and shot a short heist film with the new building, beautiful cars, and an actor’s magnificent cheekbones, highly integrated into the Mission:Impossible style plot.

“At these events, everyone in the room is talking and drinking cocktails, so we wanted to create something that really grabbed their attention,” said Baxter. “Something that felt like ‘I’m having an experience’. And something to show their own clients that they take this seriously.”

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And sometimes creativity is borne out of limitations. We were tasked with creating a ten-year anniversary video for the International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society fundraiser, who hold a ‘video Olympics’ every year – celebrating the best videos that doctors and clinicians have created to share knowledge with the Parkinson and movement disorder community. For a room full of 2,500 physicians, we needed to create a banger of a video with the two doctors that host the fundraiser every year. The catch? Our two doctors would only be arriving the day before the event. Not exactly an Eyes Wide Shut level production schedule.

So, the day before the event, we shot the two doctors discussing the possibilities of the video over a pseudo Skype call, eventually landing on a Back to the Future parody. In the week before the event, we shot the DeLorean and ‘Doc Brown’ and ‘Marty’ characters with stand-ins. A near final edit was assembled before the two doctors even showed up for their day-before shoot. On the day of the event, as the video faded out, the two doctors seamlessly drove the DeLorean into the event space and emerged, dressed in character. And, we even asked Michael J. Fox to make a brief cameo in the video. Did he agree to it? No. No, he did not.

What a good event video boils down to, Doc, is having an intimate understanding of the client, the audience, and the event’s purpose. For the BC Children’s Hospital, we have produced a series of videos for their fundraising events – personal stories from patients and families that impart the utmost importance of the Children’s Hospital as a beacon of hope for the community.

“A pledge card or pamphlet can’t carry the emotion of a patient’s story, and what their family has gone through. And often, they can’t do it in-person because it’s such a vulnerable place,” said Baxter. “So we are able to have that emotion present at an event when it’s not possible otherwise. It can capture people’s attention in a way other things can’t.”