As a tribute to Chris O’Brien, the world renowned cancer specialist, we were retained to deliver a creation that celebrated his life while at the same time raising funds for his foundation.
The brief was to produce a sophisticated sit down dinner that was highly entertaining, different from the recent memorial, and stood out from a sea of charity fundraising events. In order to help build the foundation’s fundraising brand, we decided to limit ticket sales to create an exclusive and desirable experience.
We worked with the committee to produce an event that focused on the use of light; a perfect symbol for the hope that Chris brought to people and a fitting link to the foundation’s name.
Staged inside the Great Hall of Sydney University, the design included nine metre high by twelve metre wide multi-layered projection surfaces. The advantage of such a design was that it allowed performers to appear within the projection, while keeping the focus on the mesmerising scale of the stage.
Once guests were seated, lightning cracked and Christopher Stollery, from Bell Shakespeare, appeared amongst the tables. He performed ‘Saint Crispin’s Day Speech’ from Henry V, with a subtle nod to Chris in the title.
For the evening’s main entertainment, we edited the video to the song ‘You Raise Me Up’ and had musicians perform the song live and completely in sync with the video. As different instruments and voices began to play, the musicians were revealed within the multi-layered projection and seemed to be within the video. There simply wasn’t a dry eye amongst the guests.
By creating a truly remarkable creation that was theatrical, emotive and seamless in its delivery, donations to the foundation flowed in, and the target raised exceeded all expectations. A well-known industry guest described it “as the best fundraising event I have ever been to”.