Storytelling in Event Design

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A couple of years ago I was sat in bed checking emails on a Saturday morning, and the TV was on in the background, but I wasn’t really paying attention. My ears pricked up as I heard Mel Gibson talking about the three E’s of storytelling. I immediately grabbed the remote and turned up the volume. Now whether you’re a Mel Gibson fan or not is irrelevant here because what I’m focusing on is how he as a director takes his audience on a journey. That journey is called storytelling.

Here at the Academy we spend a great deal of time teaching our students about the art of storytelling when designing an event. The principles used are no different to those applied by the film industry. We encourage our students to think about what kind of story they want to tell when planning and producing an event.

SO what are the three E’s that Mel Gibson was referring to? First you Entertain, then you Educate and finally you Elevate.

He was very clear that for him entertainment was the most important. The key to any successful story is that it must entertain your audience. This is non-negotiable and it doesn’t even have to be logical, as long as people are entertained and they get something from it, whether that’s a feeling or emotion, they need to walk away with something.

Education can be there in a number of different ways and this was the one that Mel talked about least, but for us in the event industry there is always a certain amount of education in any event we produce. This might be in the message we are delivering at a conference or our ability to take guests on a journey where they learn a little more about the bridal couple and their life together.

When talking about the final E, to elevate your audience, Mel was clear that this was the hardest of the three. Your aim is take people to another plain and reach beyond our earthboundness and go for something a little higher, whether that’s spiritual or something outside yourself that talks to your soul. This is something we all aspire to achieve within our work as event planners. We want guests to leave with an emotion and a feeling that will stay with them for a long time.

There ends today’s lesson. Remember if planning events for a living is something you’d like to do you can visit one of our websites for more details on the courses we offer:

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David Tutera

Leading Wedding & Entertaining Expert, David Tutera is hailed as an artistic visionary whose ability, uniquely creative talents and outstanding reputation have made him a tremendous success in the lifestyle arena. Tutera has created a name for himself by taking his passion for designing spectacular events and transforming it into a lifestyle.

He continuously exceeds the expected with an unmatched level of inspiration, imagination and innovation to create the latest trends in entertaining. Tutera’s grandfather, a successful florist, first noticed his grandson’s artistic ability at an early age and encouraged David to pursue his destiny. At age 19, with the sound advice of his grandfather and only one client, David opened his own event planning business.

Today, David Tutera presides over an award winning company built from experience, dedication and Tutera’s natural talent for transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary. His name has become synonymous with style, elegance, creativity and vision. David Tutera has a natural talent for transforming the ordinary into the extraordinary. His name has become synonymous with style, elegance, creativity and vision.

Honored by Life & Style Magazine as “Best Celebrity Wedding Planner,” David’s impressive client list includes Jewel, Star Jones’ wedding, Real Housewife Taylor Armstrong’s wedding, Los Angeles Clippers’ Chris Paul’s wedding, NY Giants Antonio Pierce’s wedding, Shannen Doherty’s wedding and events for Jennifer Lopez, Matthew McConaughey, Brandy and Ray J, Jenni “JWoww” Farley, Lil’ Kim, the Official Post Grammy Parties in New York City, Elton John, Barbara Walters, the Rolling Stones, Nancy Reagan, Prince Charles, The White House, private events for the Vice President, Kenneth Cole, Tommy Hilfiger, Susan Lucci, The John F. Kennedy Center, as well as countless film premieres and celebrity parties for royalty, politicians and socialites.

Tutera has also designed events for several charities including the Prevent Cancer Foundation, the Alzheimer’s Association, DIFFA (Design Industries Foundation Fighting Aids) and the Make-A-Wish Foundation. David has made guest appearances on Today, Extra!, Good Morning America, The View, CNN, The Rachael Ray Show, The Talk, Steve Harvey, Wendy Williams and many more. In addition People, USA Today, In Touch, Wall Street Journal, New York Times, In Style, Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Bridal Guide and Town & Country have all featured his work.

Tutera has also made special television appearances in the popular daytime soap, The Young & the Restless and TV Land’s The Exes. David lives in Los Angeles with his husband Joey, daughter Cielo and their rescue dog Lucy.