Event Report: “Broadway Nights” - a 2017 Gala Award Nominee!

Event Report: “Broadway Nights” – a 2017 Gala Award Nominee!


“Broadway Nights” – Produced by Amy Gale and Sam Trego.

How do you move 380 A-listers to donate hundreds of thousands of dollars for a good cause while staying within a charitable organization’s event budget?

“Broadway Nights” succeeded on every level.

We custom-created a show performed in five vignettes of 15-minute, seamless mash ups of music, dialogue and choreography that wrapped the different stages of the fundraising gala dinner. It was performed by a multi-talented cast of only 14 who could do it all, from Phantom to Les Liz to Jersey Boys. The audience cheered, cried, donated and left feeling wonderful. They danced for a 3-minute standing ovation!
Event Title: Broadway Nights
Event Date: April 23, 2016
Event Location: Fairmont Grand Del Mar, Del Mar, CA, USA
Guest Count: 380

This annual fundraising gala for the Rancho Santa Fe Unit of Rady’s Children’s Hospital San Diego is one of the most outstanding charity events of Southern California. The guest list comprises the Who’s Who of San Diego County: celebrities, U.S. senators, top state politicians, billionaires and millionaires who come together every year to donate to a worthwhile cause.

Given the background of the guests – they travel extensively, can afford every luxury and have seen it all – we had to deliver our very best to impress.
Furthermore, we know that we have to tug at the heartstrings to get them to open their purse strings.  Consequently, we developed a custom show that went into extreme detail to create the perfect emotional framework and mood for the evening.
Broadway tunes are a great way to connect emotionally with an audience.

We brought Broadway decor into the event location. To set the mood, we transformed the venue by wrapping the hallway and the ballroom in theatrical drapes. Our evening program was printed as a Playbill. We brought in a large LED screen to project stage backdrops that created virtual sets from the different Broadway production numbers.

We custom-created a Broadway show in five vignettes that connected the different segments of the evening.

We chose five very different musicals to showcase: “Phantom of the Opera”, “Lion King”, “Wicked”, “Les Miserables” and “Jersey Boys”.  Each 15-minute vignette was a completely customized, seamless mash up of lyrics, dialogue, musical arrangement and choreography that told the whole story of each musical. Our show flow was designed to wrap the official speakers and the mission videos of the night.

In our first vignette we surrounded the guests at the end of the silent auction reception with a “Phantom of the Opera” masquerade that set the mood and served as a transition to usher guests into the main ballroom.

Once everyone was seated, we launched into the colorful and joyful “Lion King”, a visually stunning performance that got everyone’s attention and provided the introduction to the evening’s opening speaker.

“Wicked” was the prelude to a presentation of the cause and the evening’s mission: raising funds to build the Rancho Santa Fe Unit’s Resuscitation Room.

As the next dinner course concluded we followed up with the most emotionally powerful of all musicals: “Les Miserables”. Our client followed up immediately with a very emotional video testimony by a young, terminally ill child. The impact was incredible. As the video concluded one guest stood up, raised his hand and pledged $100,000 on the spot. More hands went up. Everyone was in tears! The guests were wiping tears and our cast, still in costume and makeup, cried backstage. This child’s testimony and the impact of Jean Valjean’s fate, the contrast between the ill and miserable and the wealthy guests was a great emotional trigger. Hundreds of thousands of dollars were pledged in record time.

We followed up with the upbeat “Jersey Boys” to end the evening on a high, up note.
Everyone was on his or her feet! “Jersey Boys” was the perfect vehicle to transition guests from the dinner show to the dance after-party.

We got a phone call from the organizers the following Monday. The 2016 fundraising goal had been exceeded, the Resuscitation Room building fund was financed and we were hired to come back next year to produce the entertainment for the 2017 Fundraising Gala.

The Event Chair commented: “Every year our guests expect something very special, very outstanding. We have to make sure to surpass ourselves every time to make sure that they come back the following year. We received wonderful reviews for the Broadway show and our guests are already looking forward to next year!”

We are proud to have been able to work within the non-profit organization’s budget by hiring Broadway touring talent that happened to be in Los Angeles and San Diego at event time. Consequently, we did not have to spend money on travel.
Our 14 performers could perform all five pieces.
As part of the contract package for the non-profit organization we provided everything ourselves: custom show, talent, costumes, audio/visual, LED screen, drapes, decor and backdrop videos for the show vignettes. This avoided costly third-party markups.