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Special Events

Emmy Ball goes for romance

Minimalism is out, romance is in for the 58th Annual Primetime Emmy Awards Governors Ball, slated for Aug. 27 at L.A.'s Shrine Auditorium. Event producer Cheryl Cecchetto and her creative team from Culver City, Calif.-based Sequoia Productions gave the media a sneak peek at the party's design and menu last week.

Keying on the theme "Moonlight and Romance," the event will host 2,800 guests in the Shrine's main exhibition area, which will resemble a garden on a cool evening. Under the direction of Academy designer Dwight Jackson, the space will be anchored with four 32-to-40-foot diameter silk "oak trees," each hung with six to eight crystal chandeliers, all beneath a 7-foot-wide "full moon" floating in a cobalt-blue sky, Jackson tells Special Events.

The revolving bandstand, surrounded by faux concrete fountains and planters, will stand on a black-and-white chessboard dance floor. The Ray Anthony Orchestra will perform. Keith Greco Decor will fabricate the trees and other decor elements; Nelson Sosa will serve as draper. Ray Thompson of Images by Lighting will oversee lighting.


The event's design inspiration comes from mid-century American interior designer Dorothy Draper, famed for her theatrical style.

Rectangular tables will be dressed in tightly fitted petal-pink doupioni silk with sage-green net runners embellished with scallops. Designer Daryl Latter will oversee the custom linen. Black chiavaris with black seat cushions will be in place at the rectangular tables, while round tables will feature Chameleon chairs with taut, silvery green suede chair covers completely covering their backs and legs. The evening's china, from Unique Tabletop Rentals, will feature a white body with platinum bands; crystal goblets with platinum bands and silver flatware will complete the place settings.

Floral, by Mark Held of Mark's Garden, will feature lush bouquets of pale pink Titanic roses and deep pink hydrangeas, a nod to Draper's love of the color pink. Baroque vases will be painted black and sport delicate trails of ivy. Thick pink pillar candles perched on black candlesticks will complete the tablescapes.

Cecchetto said whimisically, "I think of the linen as the gown or tuxedo, and the flowers as the jewelry."


The menu, under the direction of Joachim Splichal of Patina Group, will offer stuffed avocado with shrimp, Dungeness crab and "sprouting salad" with a Louis-style dressing as a first course. The entree will be roasted prime filet mignon with a layered tart of field mushrooms and a roasted shallot and red wine sauce. For dessert, guests will dine on milk chocolate mousse made with Dove-brand chocolate--the event's "official chocolatier"--served with soft caramel and banana-thyme creme.

Classic Party Rentals is the lead rental supplier, responsible for 2,800 place settings, 8,000 pieces of china and 5,000 Champagne flutes.

At the preview, Cecchetto took pains to credit each member of the event team. She noted that 1,200 on-site personnel will attend the 2,800 guests. "They say it takes a village to raise a child," she said. "And it takes a city to put on an event."

Photos by Special Events Magazine.

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