This has been a growth year for Wildfire Entertainment. We expanded our business to new countries, added members to our team, developed closer relationships with clients and industry partners, and increased the offerings on our catalogue by a considerable amount. We were shortlisted for The Special Event Asia award for Best Supplier, mentored a team from NYP in the SACEOS MICE Challenge, successfully provided a suite of entertainment for two multi-day conferences simultaneously, and also managed to produce 95 performances over 52 weeks - that's about one show every three days!
We've achieved a lot this year, and it is the members of #TeamWildfire that have made it all possible. I caught up with our staff to find out which moments from 2019 they find most memorable. Check it out.
Wildfire's Production Manager, Amanda Tay, counts running entertainment for USANA Live - the Asia Pacific Convention for Usana Health Science Services - among her most treasured memories of 2019. Amanda joined Wildfire in January of 2017 and has been involved in producing entertainment for Usana events in Singapore and the United States for three years, but April 2019 marked the first time Amanda took the lead on the project. From liaising with the client to communicating our artistic vision to organising costume production to rehearsing with performers, taking the lead as project manager was a big job and Amanda was glad to rise to the occasion. According to Amanda, "big shows are fun" and streamlining logistics across multiple performance days was a challenge she was well-equipped to handle.
In August of this year, Wildfire's Production Executive, Nass, took on a challenge of his own. Nass was tasked with running an international project in Melbourne, Australia. While this wasn't the first time Nass has traveled overseas for a Wildfire project, it was the first time he went on his own. For this project, one of Wildfire's first under our new Australian subsidiary, Nass worked with locally-based performers in Melbourne. This meant he wouldn't have companions on the seven-hour flight to Australia, nor would he have any support navigating rehearsals and performance in a brand new city. Luckily, Nass was also able to step up to the challenge and he delivered a LuMen performance that the client was thrilled with. He also brought back cherished memories. "It was really cold!" he remembers. "I wasn't expecting that." Would he do it again? "Yes, definitely. I like getting to go new places and experience new things with Wildfire. When is the next overseas show?"
Closer to the end of the year, we added a brand new member to our team. Tushar Ismail joined Wildfire in October 2019 as our new Account Manager, and he's already brought energy, creativity, and a client-focused perspective to a role that has been difficult to find the right person to fill. While it's only been a few months, I asked Tushar what his favourite Wildfire moment this year has been. His answer surprised me. "I think it would have to be the first client meeting we went on together," he said. "Listening to the client talk about his event and what he needed us to provide, I was struck by how much I enjoy interacting with people and understanding their perspectives on things."
When I asked our Founder and Creative Director, Rob, what his favourite moment of 2019 was, his answer was characteristically forward-thinking rather than reflective. "Getting awarded the Lions Club project to do a full-length show of our own making," he answered without hesitation. He is referring, of course, to the biggest MICE event of 2020, the 103rd Lions Club International Convention, which will be held in Marina Bay Sands Expo in June of next year. Wildfire Entertainment pitched a 75-minute spectacle show concept earlier this year. After many rounds of presentations, we were selected to produce the opening night entertainment of the conference to an audience of 15,000. It's a massive project and we're very excited to take it on!
It's fitting that Wildfire's chief of innovation finds planning next year's project to be the best moment of this year. As for me, my favourite Wildfire moment of 2019 came just this month, as we are finishing out the year. This time last year, we set goals and a budget for 2019. Looking over the targets we put in place, I realised that we have met or exceeded every benchmark we set. I'm proud of our team for their commitment to quality, artistry, and innovation and the spirit of perseverance that has resulted in progress and forward momentum. Here's to hoping 2020 is just as bright!