The client tasked us with creating a Themed Gala Evening, based around a variety show but with an elegant twist and a sense of mystery!
With a limited budget we wanted to add an element of mystery and excitement to the evening.
All the guests were staying at the resort and had no idea what was going to happen. We arranged for extravagant masks to be delivered to each room with a personal invitation to ‘A Masked Ball’. The evening was full of surprises, from the moment the guests stepped foot inside the ballroom they were wowed by the transformation . When working on a budget, an immediately impactful effect can be as easy or as elaborate as you like with a few changes in décor , layout , furniture enhancement etc. In this project the elaborate table centres, the lighting and the creation of a dancefloor fit for any ball really hit the spot, but the magical touches didn’t stop there. The enjoyment continued – with close-up illusions, singing waiters who received a standing ovation for their rendition of Ireland’s Call and amazing Ballroom and Tango performances from a team of stunning professional dancers. The party didn’t stop till the wee small hours with dancing to a six piece dance band who kept the masqueraders on the floor all night.
A very satisfied client and venue!
One of our very loyal clients loves to issue us with a challenge. Here’s one of our more interesting ones. They had booked Carton House, the gorgeous Georgian 5 star resort for the annual conference and gala evening. He then decided he would like his guests to experience an authentic Irish Pub without leaving the comfort and luxury of their surroundings. He wanted his guests to enjoy the sights, smells, sounds and ambiance of a typical Irish country pub to rival any genuine Irish Pub! Splendid Georgian mansions generally don’t have an Irish Pub at the foot of the curved staircase!
Given that coaching the group to a real pub was not an option; this event had to take place on site. The ballroom and function suites weren’t going to work for this with their grey walls, new carpets, and opulent chandeliers. The best option was to commandeer the pre-dinner drinks reception area with its lower ceiling height, no windows and most importantly no chandeliers!!
We built Kitty Kelly’s Parlour from scratch – wooden floors to hide the luxury pile carpets, interior walls of the pub, camouflaging all of the modern hotel elements with a fireplace, old banquette seating, and a whole collection of genuine Irish brick a brack. We created a raised corner for the band and again camouflaged the production equipment, and operations desk with old barrels, branding and shelving. The So with hotel staff wearing jeans and polo shirts with Kitty Kelly’s branding , and Kitty herself in place to meet & greet her punters , it was time to “open up ”
‘Welcome to Kitty Kelly’s Parlour. A rural Irish country pub run by Kitty, a strong Irish woman in her golden years and her only son Seanie. He is the typical Irish mammy’s boy who will one day run the pub as he wishes but not until Kitty has gone to big Irish bar in the sky! It is a local pub with good wholesome Irish grub and entertainment. All are welcome and creating a good party is the order of the day. There is traditional Irish music on arrival and you are encouraged to have a drink at the bar before taking your table for a bite to eat. All is served at a leisurely pace, eat when you want, drink when you want, party when you want’.
The evening was underscored by Traditional Irish music, to get guests toes tapping and hands clapping and they even get a chance to partake in some Irish dancing with some of the local lads & lassies!
The guests were completely convinced that this pub was part of the Hotel. Kitty, Seanie along with the traditional Irish musicians and dancers all made the experience as real as any Irish pub anywhere in Ireland!
Levitating and vanishing cars, making multiple people appear and disappear or creating a whole new world, all pushing the boundaries of your imagination.? All of this and much more is possible at JBE. We trained in the art of illusion from a young age and have worked with some of the great masters of the art. If you want to add that extra special dimension to your event or product launch and create a WOW for your audience, we can help you. Combining magic and illusion principles with modern projection and lighting technology can create a powerful live event experience. We love to push the boundaries of the imagination.
Special FX from JBE are available on Vimeo
We have been working closely with The Guinness Storehouse to enhance the visitor experience at several locations in the Storehouse. We provide a mix of entertainers at key locations during the tour and have surprises built in a several areas. These range from great music sessions in Arthurs bar to tasting experiences with a twist.
The Guinness Storehouse approached us to
When faced with adversity creativity is born!
JBE the creator of Irish Dancing on Tables. JBE created the concept and were the first to stage Irish Dancing in this unique and innovative way.
When it came to celebrating their tenth year of business in Ireland, haircare giant Schwarzkopf wanted to do go the extra mile for their annual business awards dinner. They wanted an Irish theme, something the JBE team was obviously very familiar with, but this particular client wanted something that was extraordinary.
Rather than putting on an Irish-themed show for a corporate group, we needed to entertain a group of hairdressers, mainly made up of women between the ages of 18 and 40. It needed to be Irish, but Irish like they’d never seen before.
We came up with a concept that captured both the traditional flavour that the client wanted and a youthfulness that would really engage the guests. We pitched the idea of having Irish dancing and creating a very contemporary piece to fit the clients dynamic, hence the use of cloaks/ hairdressing capes. The client immediately loved the idea especially the personal touches, however, this then created another challenge. The venue was too small to accommodate a stage, therefore,, making a dance performance ineffective and even pointless. But we were not deterred by the face of adversity, and so our dancing on tables/Celtic Dawn was born.
We commissioned a series of reinforced round dinning tables to match those of the venue and substituted a number of their tables for our specialized tables and then dressed them in the same linens and table centres etc. The unassuming diners sat at the tables and enjoyed the offerings unaware of what was to come. The surprise and excitement of the guests was palpable when the tablecloths were whipped off and an Irish dancer mounted the table to begin a heart-pounding, show stopping, impactful and interactive performance right there on the table!
It really was a case of creating art from adversity. With the limitations of the concept in mind we created a truly spectacular, elemental experience that delighted the guests who erupted into a spontaneous round of applause.
We knew immediately from the crowd reaction that the performance was a hit. We had managed to hold onto the surprise element in spite of the complicated setup and succeeded in giving the guests a real thrill. It was a stunning sensory experience that managed to blend both the traditionally Irish with the youthful and modern. While many clients have asked us to make them something traditional and quaint, we absolutely loved the opportunity to do something sexy with an ‘Irish’ brief and add a spectacular spin.
Now almost a staple of many entertainment packages we were the originators of the Irish Dancing Table Dancers at an event we crated for Schwarzkopf. We still have the best troupes and the most innovative performances.
Since 2013 our product has grown in content and production and has now been performed all over Ireland, the UK and Europe and the plan to conquer the world is still a work in progress.
We now have a range of original and unique Irish Dancing products under the Celtic Dawn Brand.
Dancing on Tables – An innovative way to present Irish Dance. Watch your guest be blown away by the surprise element of this stunning production of Irish Dance in a battle between drum and bodhran, male vs female dancers in a unique presentation further enhanced with stunning light sequences.
A Flash Mob – Irish dance and drum surprise when and where least expected.
Clash – When bodhran meets drum, there can only be one outcome. An explosion of sound and rhythm in a battle of wills and Irish Dance.
Made of Black – Irish Dance with contemporary music by Kanye West, created for the Guinness Storehouse.
Range of Full Stage shows – Combining traditional Irish routines with contemporary Irish Dance, stunning costumes, live musicians. Interactive elements and Ceilis are also options.
Our client asked us to create a memorable climax for their annual three-day managers’ getaway. One of our tasks was to create a memorable gala dinner on the final night and we quickly got to work finding the right venue to capture the romance of the region. Luckily, Abu Dhabi is a part of the world that JBE is very familiar with and we knew just where to find that something special.
This event presented a number of unique challenges, the most obvious being the remote location. Naturally, this meant that nothing could get lost or left behind or we’d be facing a four-hour round trip when we had little time to spare. We were also conscious of the budget and the limitations of the chosen venue – we only had a portion of the property rented for the evening. This meant we had to be discreet and not get in the way of the other guests. Finally, this brief came with the possibility of a nightmare scenario: In the desert, sand storms can appear out of nowhere and without warning, potentially transforming our fantasy paradise into a dense fog of hot sand in as little as twenty minutes. It wasn’t likely to happen, but it was always in the back of our minds.
We quickly fell in love with the Qasr al Sarab desert resort. A picturesque oasis in the middle of the desert, the luxurious getaway came with the added romance of being located quite literally in the middle of nowhere – the nearest town was a two-hour drive away. In Abu Dhabi, the sun sets in about twenty minutes and is a spectacular sight when seen over the dunes of the Liwa desert. We decided to make this spectacle a feature of our evening, with a cocktail reception starting off 30 minutes before sunset.
We took over a terraced area of the resort overlooking the sand dunes and transformed it into a candlelit retreat in which guests could relax and enjoy the environment. We made extra room by partially submerging the canÃ¡pe tables in the reflecting pool at the centre of the space. After the sun disappeared below the horizon, the space was illuminated by meticulously arranged displays of candles. Later, we released a helium balloon carrying a stage lamp, elevating it to over 25 metres in height so that it covered the whole terrace in a warm amber glow (reminiscent of Arabian moonlight).
For the dinner itself, we led the guests to a cosy courtyard that contained its own reflecting pool. Here, we covered the entire area including the pool, with an internally lit Perspex floor. We also lit the arches overlooking the courtyard and pin-spotted each table to give the impression of lilies floating in serene aquamarine water.
Following an outstanding dinner, the guests returned to the terrace area where they were entertained by a seven-piece classical rock band, David Garrett Rock Symphonies. We built our own stage and dance floor as the venue’s own setup wasn’t appropriate for a night-time concert. While the guests were rocking out, we then transformed the courtyard area into a club setting, changing the under-floor lighting to a warmer colour and replacing the dining tables with lounge seating to allow the guests to keep the party going once the musical performance had wrapped up.
We made sure to plan meticulously, execute deliberately and prepare a similarly chic backup in should our worst case scenario happen. Thanks to our brilliant, detail-focused team and a lot of crossed-fingers, the event went off without a hitch. The Mewa staff were wowed by the truly magical atmosphere, we came in under budget and the desert was kind enough not blow away all our hard work.
We were approached by Meitheal when they were looking to do something a little different. With over 1200 buyers on the way from all over the world they needed somewhere to wine and dine them together with something big to entertain them. They were looking for something luxurious but rustic, a five-star experience that also had something unique and memorable to it.
Our client FÃ¡ilte Ireland’s brief was to source a venue to facilitate 1200 international and Irish buyers, for their Final evening and Gala dinner. The challenge presented itself when the Venue we came up with was the same one as FÃ¡ilte Ireland had planned to hold their meetings for the buyers, and wanted the Gala dinner to be a completely separate space. A Space for 1200 guests to dine together in Dublin was at that time impossible, but that is a word that the team at JBE do not like. We “pitched” the idea of of a marque with a difference. A circus tent. A marquee did not exactly instill excitement in our client and so the concept of a “Medieval Marque” arose, and subsequently our theme was born.
Our goal was to bring the guests back to the year 1169 with the re-enactment of the wedding of Aoife and Strongbow. We researched every detail to ensure total immersion in the fantasy. Guests dined under enormous tents at trestle tables, ate exquisite roast pig and were waited on by vassals and wenches in detailed period dress. Entertainment was provided by a concert harp quartet and the Bunratty singers with backing by a trio of musicians performing extraordinary period music on the mandolin, fiddle and bodhrÃ¡n. And with a nod to the surroundings there had to be an aerialist and even some horse back skills amongst the trestles included in the programme. But that wasn’t all. The main event of the evening was something truly spectacular. When they first arrived, every guest was handed a sash in a colour corresponding to one of the four provinces of Ireland. After the meal, guests were brought outside (and provided with thermal blankets) and treated to a spectacular jousting competition. They were told to feel free to cheer for their province (though really they didn’t need much encouragement).
We took the client brief for “something a bit different” and made sure the evening was unforgettable, an experience that the guests will keep with them for years. We exceeded our client’s expectations by making sure every detail of the evening was taken care of, from the practical difficulties of finding the right venue with the highest levels of luxury, to the meticulous detail of the fantasy itself. The client, the guests and the performers were all thrilled with the way the evening turned out (as were we) and we still get calls and comments about it to this day.