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Choose a venue with production needs in mind

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As a meeting planner, what’s on your checklist of venue requirements for meetings and events? Convenient location, capacity, F+B quality, costs… What about your production needs? Do you routinely consult your AV supplier or meeting producer before you sign the venue to ensure they can successfully deliver the meeting/event format and content that’s required within the available parameters?

Here is what your TD/Producer needs to know to help you make the right venue decision before they can get to work on the creative concept and budget.

  • how big a “show” needs to be produced
  • what size is the audience
  • do you have enough space for rear projection screens
  • how many presenters/ entertainers need to rehearse
  • what format for presentations
  • are there rigging points and sufficient electricity
  • how far is the loading dock and access times
  • is there nearby space for dressing rooms
  • is another group on the other side of the airwall

 The answers to these questions have an impact on how much time is needed for:

  • AV set-up
  • tech rehearsals
  • presenter/ entertainer sound checks and rehearsals

Better safe than sorry so please reserve the day before for AV installation until these points are finalized. Even with a midnight set-up start, you are living dangerously without a contingency to solve potential technical challenges and even less time for last minute changes requested by the presenters when they arrive just before the meeting starts. Can I fit in a large enough stage to handle the action? That depends on:

  • how many presenters on stage at the same time
  • will there be a panel discussion with furniture, a dance troupe or live band
  • With a larger group the presenters will appreciate an extra wide stage so they can roam and get closer to their audience.

Can I fit a control table comfortably in the room? In one case, we had to set up in the adjacent hotel service corridor and monitored the live action through closed circuit cameras in the room. Are you planning a product launch or major announcement and need to pump up the music? Air walls will not contain your sound and you”ll end up disturbing the meeting in the room next door. If you need to blast it, make sure in advance that you have the privacy to do what you need to. I am confident that you are well aware of these points. If you haven’t yet considered it though, please try consulting with your meeting producer and TD before you make a final venue choice. This will ensure that you have both the tools and working conditions to deliver the content and style of meeting needed to satisfy your client’s strategic communications objectives.

Michael Caplan
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Michael Caplan

Michael Caplan is the Creative Director and Producer at Sensix Communications & Events, a meeting and event production company that he founded in 1979, headquartered in Montreal.

Michael possesses a brand of creativity and vision that can only come with over 30 years of experience, constantly bringing the industry to new heights. He is recognized as a leader in his field, and was honoured with the Canadian Event Industry Award for Producer of the Year and continues to lead his team with innovative award-winning work.
Michael Caplan
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