The annual Victorian Multicultural Gala Dinner presented by the Victorian Multicultural Commission marks the launch of Cultural Diversity Week. The 2022 theme was ‘Connecting Through Culture’ and this year’s event was especially significant as we came together after many months apart due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
JT. Production Management was proud to produce this mammoth event, kicking off the initial planning meeting in early December 2021 and accumulating 740 hours of work from four project managers and a total of twenty-four team members on event night!
Here’s some of the highlights:
The Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre - MCEC, is made up of three adjacent buildings nestled alongside the Yarra River in South Wharf, an inner-city suburb of Melbourne, Victoria.
It was one of few venues that could hold the 1,400 guests but still meant we needed very tight tables and an accurate seating plan. MCEC also offers great views along with discreet and secure entry points for VVIP’s on the night including:
To ensure we brought the space to life to reflect our vibrant community, JTPM created multiple activations within the event including:
1.Welcoming archway to pin point our brand, measuring 3m x 2.5m, we built a vibrate arch that signalled the entryway
2.Purple carpet media wall experience – located before the entrance to the main room featuring sponsor logos and used for photo opportunities, measuring 6m x 3m, this purple carpet experience brought a sense of vibrancy and VIP feel to the event
3.Secondary photo engagement – at the far right of the foyer, before entering the main room. Guests could contribute to the photo mosaic via a photobooth (supporting the community theme) and take hard copies of the images home with them.
With guests from a range of cultural backgrounds, we had many different dietary requirements to cater for.
The MCEC food philosophy is vibrant, diverse, and celebrates Melbourne - a city famous for exceptional food. Passionate about quality and sustainability, the award-winning catering team sourced the finest and freshest local produce, and every dish is original, prepared in-house and by hand. Here's a sneak peek at the dinner menu:
Inspired by the weaving of tapestry our ‘Wishing Tree’ table centrepieces were co-designed between JTPM and Skunk Control, to represent the theme of connecting through culture. Made from recycled wood, the trees had multicoloured VMC branded ribbons hanging from the branches. Blank ribbons, sharpies and gold pins were also provided, and guests were invited to write a wish and swap it for the branded ribbons on the tree.
“Recognising traditions, recognising heritage, recognising values - together we make up the rich tapestry of life and we invite you to join us tonight in creating our very own works of art. Share with us your wish, your truth, your purpose - write it on your ribbon and trade it for one hanging on our trees. May these ribbons represent the vibrant multicultural community we have in Victoria and may your written wish come true.”
Everyone loved sharing their wish and wearing their branded ribbons - giving guests another way to interact and contribute to the event. Each guest also received a mini-native plant to take home as a memento of the night.
Some of the wishes that were made on the night included:
"Wishing for peace."
"Stop the war in Afghanistan and uktane"
"love, respect, peace"
"I wish for equality and good opportunities for students"
"I wish my children will grow up in a safe, kind and forgiving world" "Less talk and more action from gov + orgs for equity and inclusion"
"peace and shared fellowship"
"I wish all migrant, refugee and asylum seeker women feel safe"
"peace, brotherhood, empathy, resilience, love'
" a year without turmoil, conflict and war, communal support in the space of hardship"
"for emerging African communities to thrive"
The Victorian Multicultural Gala Dinner showcased a range of talent 15+ performances, including 1x MC, 2x SLAM Poets, 10x cultural performances and a number of VIP speeches, each act required a unique stage and technical set up.
For example, our Chinese lion dancers arrived as a group of 25 performers, making it tricky to keep everyone organised among the other 48 artists. Coordinating enough rehearsal time for each of these acts in the lead up to the event was also a fun challenge to tackle.
It was an honour to deliver this spectacular event on Saturday, 19 March 2022 – a celebration of Victoria's vibrant multicultural community with an unforgettable evening of fine dining, uplifting entertainment, and social and professional networking opportunities.
Like the wishing trees on our tables, the event was grounded in the common threads of human emotion and connection. We all make up the landscape of life - our roots, our branches - unique and strong and beautiful.
At JTPM, we are passionate about delivering events with purpose just like the Victorian Multicultural Gala Dinner. Check out the highlights video below and give us a call for support with your next event - no matter how big or small!