When it comes to live events, you get one shot. There’s no chance for a do-over. The cast and crew of a Broadway show prepare and perform day after day with months of practice beforehand. As for trade shows, the General Service Contractor (GSC) team may only have a few months to prepare for an event. Something that both a Broadway show and a trade show have in common is that both teams need to be ready for anything. The success of either type of show wouldn’t be possible without the help of a team of experts to ensure a show worthy of a standing ovation.
Front of the House
With Broadway shows, the team consists of the Producer(s), Director, Stage Manager, Production Crew, Orchestra and the performers (Actors, Dancers & Singers).
You have those who are going to be front and center during the show. On the GSC side, there’s the Operations Manager, Account Executive, Account Manager and Exhibitor Services Representative. The roles for both teams are similar. They are the planners, organizers, and the ones on show site.
With any show you need experienced and high quality talent. The lead role is the Show Manager. The show is the play and the show must go on. The show’s success is key and it is all hands on deck to make sure the show opens and closes without a hitch. The doors are the curtains and once they open, the show welcomes the attendees to experience something new and exciting.
Back of the House
Behind the scenes is where things really get started with the creative and production teams. Without them, the show wouldn’t go on. They cover the details that you probably don’t think about when attending a show. The back of the house team is a well oiled machine. On the GSC side, there’s the Warehouse Manager, Foreman, Transportation, and the Graphic Designer. On Broadway, there’s the Makeup Artist, Carpenter, Lighting Designer and Set Designer.
It’s all in the details, starting with the floor plan, which is where you place the stage and audience seating. What’s on the stage? What is your back drop? Are you hanging anything from the rafters / ceiling? The foreman is the director and he/she will be making sure everything is in its right place for show time.
There is a lot that goes into live events.
“There’s no business like Trade Show business.” – Ruthi Eckert
Overall, with your team, you can make the live events happen. Next time you are at a trade show, or a Broadway show, think about what goes into making the show go on.