Monday, March 31, 2014

PR-ing the JUNOS

We often underestimate the man power that it takes to run a show, an awards show at that. What happens behind the scenes is never shown on camera, and for the right reasons. The 2014 Juno Awards was broadcast live in Winnipeg this year and I got the backstage, behind the scenes, full PR experience.

Of course, I must share it with you, whether they want me to or not - this is happening.

The job itself was anything but glamorous. Yes, I had access to places that others did not, but it was completely controlled and not every artist was within reach. PR people have to be professional around the famous; it's an image that we must maintain. As difficult as it was not to run up to a respected artist, ask for their autograph, and a selfie, I don't think I would have it any other way.

Along with PR professionals, those that control the action from the show to backstage, there are media personalities, photographers, and editors, all situated in near proximity of one another. My role was to ensure ease in receipt of media cards from the photog pit to the media room. It's an easy task but there are rules that we had to follow:
  • Don't move until commercial break
  • Never push an artist out of the way, no matter what the deadline

The Photo Pit

No matter what the circumstance, everyone is there to ensure the artist's experience is pleasant and comfortable.

Once the award is won, the artist gets escorted backstage in the media room. This is where all the post performance, and win, interviews happen. It's an in-depth, personal, talk with the artists themselves. Media personalities and reporters are lined up waiting for every one of them to get introduced to the group.

Once the show was over, I had the pleasure of sitting in the back of the room, listening attentively to all the questions and answers.

Gord Bamford was the first interview I saw before my phone died; the loss of technology was my only connection to the interview timeline. Nevertheless, following his interview were the hosts of the evening. I'm always impressed by Serena Ryder and Johnny Reid, the Canadian with the Scottish accent, they are very humble individuals.

Backstage Media Room
Serena had a winning personality, Commander Chris Hadfield is extremely well spoken and extremely kind, I have a new found respect for Tegan & Sara, and I will always love Canadian Country Music.

A few other highlights of the evening:
  • I finally met Mr. Ace Burpee; even though we've spoken previously, we'd never officially met
  • John Hendricks recognized me first from Twitter - he's great by the way!
  • Did you know that ChrisD is not a bot? Well, he's not because I met him
  • I locked eyes with Trevor Guthrie, and
  • I got to go backstage where the magic happens
  • Every performance impressed me
  • BTO are legends and gave the best performance of the night
  • The best dressed group was Walk Off the Earth
(So much more, I'm sure I'll think of it after I post this)

Trevor Guthrie
Randy Bachman, during the last performance of the night
Walk Off the Earth, Red Carpet experience. (I was on the left facing the carpet)
My feet were sore, my back was strained, and I was parched with chapped lips, but at the end of the night, I enjoyed my experience working the 2014 Juno Awards. I think the best part of the evening was realizing that I was recognized as a professional in my industry, by those that only knew me from the work that did, and still do, in our community. There's no better feeling than that.

Now, if only I had remembered to PVR the show.

No comments:

Post a Comment