Sorry to say, I have never been to the Governors Ball that follows the Academy Awards Oscar ceremony. I count myself lucky, though, to attend the press previews of the event staged by the event's design and production company, Los Angeles-based Sequoia Productions. At the preview, members of the media get the chance to ogle all the elements — decor, lighting, tabletop, food — that give a champagne fizz to this dazzling event.
Yet well before I joined the staff of Special Events Magazine, I had a wonderful glimpse of a bit of the behind-the-scenes talent that makes the whirl of Oscar parties so wonderful. My early-morning jog used to take me past Morton's restaurant in West Hollywood, Calif., and I remember stopping one day to gape as a crew of men struggled to hoist giant topiary Oscar statues into place at Morton's entrance. Trucks from Regal Rents (now part of Classic Party Rentals) were in the back, unloading all manner of equipment. “So that's what goes into Vanity Fair magazine's Oscar party,” I thought to myself. It looked to me like an awful lot of work, and I wondered if the setup had a chance of being finished in time. I doubted it.
I was wrong, of course. That year's party came, sparkled and went, as it has for years since.
What will be different next year is that Morton's won't be the event venue. A hotspot since 1979, this L.A. institution is closing its doors at year-end, to be replaced by a chic import from London, Soho House. And we can only wonder what wonderful parties will take place at the same address, but in a venue with a whole new look.
Special Events has been the event industry's media hotspot since 1982, and as you can see with this issue, we have a whole new look. Hundreds of our readers replied to the editorial audits we've been sending out, and your comments have helped shape our redesign. We want to go on providing you with insight into some of the best special events being held today. We want to bring you event photography that gets your own design juices flowing. We want to share the thinking of the sharpest minds in special events on the issues that are shaping our future. We want to pinpoint the important details that make or break events.
A big bouquet of thanks to our design team, group design director John Herr and Special Events art director Cheryl Prats.
Welcome to our party!