In the Spring of 2019, HighLife Productions collaborated with Spring44 + Chef Andrew Maturana to reinvent the “dinner party”. Local, Sustainable, delicious eats were on the menu as well as our signature “farm-to-bar” cocktail program, which is a highlight of our summer events calendar at our marquee event Secret Summer. Venue: The Foundry LIC, Florals by Brenton Wolf, Rentals by Broadway Party Rental, Catering by Rapt NY, DJ Eric Visa, Photos by @julesslutsky,
SShef is an unparalleled private dining experience, that was held at The Foundry on Thursday, May 9th This exclusive event served as a kickoff to Secret Summer, the nation’s first and only farm to bar cocktail festival. SShef is brought to you by RAPT, an NYC-based catering and events company and HighLife Productions an NYC based Event Production Company. This special supper club was a three course experience from chef and RAPT owner Andrew Maturana, complemented by unlimited farm to bar cocktails from Spring 44. The dinner menu featured Crisp Edamame with Perigord Truffle and Parmigiano Reggiano, Wild-Caught, Pan-Roasted Black Sea Bass with Fennel Rosti & Buttermilk and Grilled Spring Eggplant Terrine with Fromage Blanc & Pinot Reduction. The night’s entree is a “Woolley Sheep Farm” Spring Lamb with a Jerusalem Artichoke and Miso Purée, Additionally, House Pappardelle Pasta will be served with Chanterelle and Spring Garlic Cream. Dessert will be “Berried Treasure Farm” Tristar Berry Crumble with a 5 Spice Crust, whipped Mascarpone and baby basil.
Creative production, experiential marketing and design by HighLife.
Too often we overlook what is most important. We fixate on things instead of people. It is the people who make every event memorable. Not just your guests but your staff. These individuals are the face of your brand, cause, event, company, and more. In this gig economy this aspect of part time work or the idea of “picking up shifts until something better comes along’ is looked down upon. Take for example that case of Jeffrey Owens bagging groceries at a whole foods and how he was job-shamed for trying to earn a wage. Just in that case many of the event staff at your party are artists, actors, models, singers, dancers who are between jobs.
Its this kind of dedication and hustle that makes the individuals behind a “gig” based workforce memorable. These people are the faces and voices behind major commercial campaigns, TV, shows, films, and your favorite magazines. They are also the people who work your event.
The next time you plan your event, ask yourself that just like the food or the drinks or the music, can the staffing be better.
NIKE, STOP COOKIE-ING ME AROUND THE INTERNET AND STALKING ME LIKE MY EX-GIRLFRIEND KAREN
Tyler Hollinger, Founder HighLife Productions
There is nothing that trumps actually being there. Actually seeing, tasting, feeling, hearing, witnessing, — experiencing. “Feeling all the feels” as the kids say these days. The digital world has done so so much. The Internet is by far the most earthshaking revolution in modern history. It has revolutionized the way we travel, the way we choose what restaurant, where we stay on vacation and even the way we date. In many ways it has connected us with people through a computer or phone and in many ways it has distanced us from actually talking, seeing, interacting with people in real life. Remember the days when you went to a store or a restaurant or a pub because “they knew you” not because of their 5-star yelp review. There has been something lost in actually being there. Actually experiencing THE THING. Taking it in with all the senses and this is why we believe the experiential world to be all the more relevant. These live experiences are more important now, more impactful, more relevant than ever because of technology.!
DO IT FOR THE GRAM
So many things we do in today’s life we do are for social media. “Let’s go to this restaurant because the lighting is great for my pictures on instagram, or let’s go hiking and stream it live on FB or let’s go to this rally and tweet about it or this concert and put it on Snapchat or let’s go outside and look at the eclipse while doing a song on music.ly. Very few people just stay at home and share on social media (we all know who you are and please stop.) No more photos of you in your bed with a “case of the Mondays” no more shots of you on the couch watching GOT. NO MORE. All that pent up “social envy” when you see friends at “that concert” or “that vacation” or “that performance” or “that party.” Social media helps us share experiences. Which is just the point. Get out there and experience. Then tweet it, post it, share it. Show people you have a life that is filled with interesting, vast experiences.
NOT ALL IMPRESSIONS ARE GOOD IMPRESSIONS
Now more than ever experiential marketing is on the rise and should be on the forefront of all brands marketing spends. Yes the digital world has (x) many impressions and (y) many views. But not all impressions are good impressions and not all views are actual experiences. How many times have you seen a pop-up ad on a web-page and you have tried to click that tiny little “x” in the corner to close it as it literally gets in the way of what you want. Well in doing so you have clicked the actual add 4 times telling “Samsung” that you love their phone and their “click-thru” data is miraculously working because you are clicking on it all this time trying to close the damn ad!~ Literally SAMSUNG or whichever brand you prefer is standing in front of what you are trying to get. How many times have you scrolled past a facebook ad that plays a video. You didn’t watch it but the video started playing. Congrats you have “viewed” that video and the marketing people on the other end go back to the brand and say “Guess What”! We are doing such a great job because your video has 8 trillion views! Even though 8 trillion people ONLY SCROLLED PAST IT. Don’t believe the hype the digital marketers are selling you. The last time you bought a shirt or a computer or a television or furniture you did so because you liked it. Not because the brand paid millions of dollars to cookie you around the internet showing you pop-up ads on every page you visit. I don’t know about you but when I google a brand to read about it, then a couple hours later that brands ad pops up on FACEBOOK saying “BUY ME” it doesn’t make me feel good about that brand. No. It’s makes me feel like NIKE is my ex-girlfriend stalking me around the internet lurking, spying, just letting me know “Hi. its me. Karen. I’m doing well. How are you?” How about you not stalk me on the internet Karen. K. Thanks. Why are these brands spending MILLIONS of dollars on internet advertising that do nothing but create the wrong impression.
Depth not Width
The experience is everything. You know what creates a good impressions. The actual act of doing it and doing it well. When we have an experience with a brand, a person, a company — anything. It is how we perceive this to be key. How was it? How did it make you feel? How did it affect you.? As wonderful as Kylie Jenner’s photos are on instagram do they affect you? Do they make you feel great as a person? Odds are they actually kind of have the opposite effect right? Wow like “I wish I had her money” or “Wow I wish I was a thin as her” or “Wow I’m not as pretty.” So it kind of puts this idea of “Followers” “Likes” into a bit more of a context. I argue that not a ton of followers is amazing and not all likes are the same. If someone has 1 million followers and sells ZERO tickets/sales I’d say those followers are worthless. If someone has 200 followers and sells 2 tickets I would say those followers are worth a lot more. It’s all perspective. It’s all situational.
Depth not width. What I mean by this is having an actual impact not a perceived one. Having followers that actually want to be there. that are actual fans, that actually care! — which in the end is what it boils down to. Engaging a community that really cares, that wants to stay up to date or in the know with the latest and greatest. To cultivate this kind of DEEP relationship takes time and attention to detail. Making sure your customer/followers/ticket buyers have the best possible experience.
More and more the millennial attitude is to spend disposable income on experiences not things. Less and less people are owning homes because of the ridiculous costs of mortgages, insurance, taxes, maintenance. This lack of permanence attitude means the next generation is not having as many kids and has little desire for permanence. In place they are spending their money on experiences. Travel, concerts, shows. Entertainment that is experienced based. Nowadays people do things for the social media post. To show their friends they are cool, have cool friends, and do cool things. So get out there. Do cool shit. Just make sure you tag us in the photo 🙂
We are event producers here in NYC. HighLife Productions is founded on the belief that in our digital age we still want real human interaction. What better way to achieve this than a party. Which is precisely why we are here. Welcome. Have a seat. Have a drink. Have something to eat. Dance. It’s going to be a long strange trip.
HighLife Model Staffing division was selected by Instagram to support their annual summer event. Over 150 top Instagram executives including the founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger gave keynote speeches to the invited audience in one of Brooklyn’s most sought after waterfront rooftops. Delectable bites prepared by celeb chef Ashton Keefe and HighLife bar support paired local brews and vineyards for any incredible evening under the moon. The Empire State Building even lit up purple and orange!
Highlife Productions was tapped by the 50 top real estate producers in Norway to create a memorable company bash that celebrated all things Brooklyn. Venue sourcing, performance curation, farm-to-table catering, model staffing, bespoke burning (wtf?) cocktails and more were on the menu for the night. This intimate corporate event for 50 VIPs started out classy but became an all-out old-time-rager complete with costumes, games, and more. HighLife put together the complete immersive experience, bringing out the funky vintage loft we have always dreamed about living in bespeckled with funk and fun! Mara Kaye crooned the night away with Rapt affairs providing the bites. This was surely a night Norway would never forget!
AQUARIUS is a celebration of new ideas in sustainable seafood farming, catching, and sourcing. Aquarius is the eleventh astrological sign in the Zodiac. The Aquarius constellation is a summer constellation in the northern hemisphere. Under the tropical zodiac, the sun is in Aquarius typically between January 20 and February 18. The event featured many delicacies of the sea as well as a bevy of sustainable seafood purveyors and premium wines and spirits.
HIGHLIFE partnered with RAPT EVENTS and THE FOUNDRY LIC to create a one-of-a-kind 360 degree immersive experience like none other. Guests entered the Foundry gates from an arched stone passageway, followed a twinkling, dimly lit path to a hidden entrance into the first room of the Aquarius event. There, ticket-buyers were greeted by ice fairies and ushered into the arctic-chic white-out room to pose and play in front of a myriad of photo opportunities to capture that perfect Winter-chic insta-moment. As guests made their way through the space, they discovered a multitude of seafood purveyors, vendors and restaurants offering delicious canapé and amuse-bouche featuring only fish, crustacean and bivalves sourced (exclusively) from the ‘Aquarius’ seafood sponsors. Along with all the wonderful bites guests enjoyed live burlesque and aerialist performances, interactive art, custom design/lounge corners and a performance by NYC’s HIGH & MIGHTY BRASS BAND to cap off this winter wonderland extravaganza.
“‘This is an event for 21 to 40-year-old millennial hipster foodie fashion-forward people who love great cocktails and love great food,’ Tyler Hollinger says when I press him to identify who his forthcoming sustainable seafood and farm-to-bar cocktail event, Aquarius, is for.”
As you meander thru the space check out lush greenhouses, performers, innovative mixology, and immersive experiences. Plus feel good about eating and drinking, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to New York City’s Sustainable fisheries and shellfish farms. (now that’s cool)
Wearable Experiments the wearable technology brand tapped HighLife Productions to help them put together an innovative branded launch for their new line of yoga apparel called NADI X. Neuehouse provided the venue and HighLife Productions provided vendor selection, branded partnerships, event production, and model staffing. Signature Herradura coconut margaritas were served in bespoke hand cut coconut & company branded coconuts for all to indulge. A gorgeous spread of charcuterie and artisanal cheeses delighted the senses and the evening was capped off with a panel discussion led by Refinery29 and an immersive yoga demonstration of the new line.
Raptor Venture Capital hired HighLife Productions to produce their VR technology demo in the heart of their meatpacking office early in the summer. This intimate event for 60 people was highlighted by delicious treats and sumptuous eats. Tuna Poke Tacos, Basil Pesto and Brooklyn Ricotta Crositni were among some of the fresh canapes while guests sipped on Ginger Infused Buckwheat Honey Yuzu Margaritas with Fleur de Sel. Here’s to virtual reality and stunning rooftops.