We approached the Awards as a 90 minute TV show – keeping on-screen viewers entertained and involved throughout. We set up a TV studio in one of our self contained events spaces ideal for livestreaming, equipped with a bespoke set and staging, multiple lighting and sound options, rigged cameras, an HD video wall for large scale graphics, and dressing rooms and showers for participants all under one Orchard HQ roof.
We pre-recorded messages and winning announcements from stars such as Michael Sheen, Huw Edwards, Rakie Ayola, Rhys Ifans, Rebecca Evans, Colin Jackson and Suzanne Packer, as well as entertainment from Only 4 Men Aloud and Grammy winner Amy Wadge. The whole show was directed from an OB unit housed in our warehouse just metres away, mixing our live show hosts, the experienced broadcasters Nicola Heywood Thomas and Arfon Haines Davies, with audience engagement on social media, pre-recorded film and a Powerpoint thread.
We gathered all the shortlisted nominees on a separate Zoom channel, some from as far afield as the US, and these were mixed in as each award was announced, with the reaction of the winners adding a lovely, warm personal touch to proceedings.