What was the party?
On 17 November the British Red Cross London Ball 2005 at Fortesqueue's temporary structure Room by the River, on the South Bank, hosted the charity's ambassadors, supporters and celebrity friends including Ian Wright, Angela Rippon, Flavio Briatore and John Madejski.
How was the party themed?
The multi-purpose venue became a water-themed extravaganza to fit in with the ball's title H2O, The Element of Life. The space was split into two levels, with guests initially directed upstairs to a cocktail lounge where the focal point was the new Evento rotating bar, at which guests could choose from a selection of cocktails.
In front of this a floor projection system from Arcstream gave guests the feeling that they were walking on water, with shoals of fish scurrying beneath them. There was also a selection of stylish modern furniture and water-related canapés. After the reception, guests entered the main room for dinner. A mirrored structure adorned three sides of the room, within which Perspex sheets contained images from the latest Habitat catalogue, in keeping with the modern furniture feel.
Water poured down the sheets, creating the H2O vibe. This technique was used on a larger scale in front of the stage to create a huge curtain of descending water, upon which the words British Red Cross were projected in red. The mirrored table tops, with glass vases up to five feet tall, looked stunning, and mirrored material attached to large steel rings created shimmering chandeliers. At the front of the room the stage hosted a charity auction and tribute band Björn Again.
Who was behind the party?
DNA Productions MD Matt James devised the concept and employed caterer Rhubarb, lighting and sound expert Robert Lawrence, Evento supplier The Last Samurai, florist McQueens and virtual projection operator Arcstream. Aquabatics provided the water curtain, while Staar Productions entertained guests.
What were the highlights?
The event raised £950,000 raised for the British Red Cross, with a handbag from Alexander McQueen selling for £38,000. The perimeter framework with running water and uplit Perspex sheets worked beautifully, as did the water screen in front of the stage. Other highlights were the floral centrepieces and the water-based menu , while the Evento Bar allowed guests to grab cocktails without having to move around.