Emmys Preview: Inspired By Nature, Governors Ball Moves Toward Rustic Elegance

The Television Academy's three Emmy-related balls will have a glam but organic "Nature's Elegance" theme.

By Alesandra Dubin September 7, 2016, 3:10 PM EDT

This year, Patina will partner with Santa Maria, California-based Babé Farms for fresh, local ingredients.

Photo: Alesandra Dubin/BizBash

As is an annual rite after Labor Day in Los Angeles, international press assembled on Wednesday for a preview of the look and feel of the Emmy awards' three splashy dinners.

The Television Academy's Governors Ball Committee and Sequoia Productions announced that this year’s theme will be ”Nature's Elegance” for the two Creative Arts Balls (set for September 10 and 11, following the Creative Arts Awards), as well as the Governors Ball (September 18, following the 68th Primetime Emmy Awards). It's the 19th year Cheryl Cecchetto and the Sequoia team have worked on production for the three events, which all carry the same theme and catering. 

More than 8,000 total guests will sit for dinner from Patina Catering; billed as the largest formal sit-down dinner in the U.S., the Governors Ball’s Los Angeles Convention Center party space is the length of a football field and is double the width, covered by more than 32,000 square feet of carpeting.

Patina will have 750 cooks in the kitchen and 1,800 servers to present its menu: The first course will be heirloom beets, followed by a meaty main of so-called “Turf & Turf,” and wrapping up with a flourless chocolate cake. Patina has partnered with local Babé Farms for the ingredients.

Official spirits sponsor World Class will offer Ketel One Vodka and The Hilhaven Lodge Blended Straight American Whiskey cocktails: the Ketel One Moonlighter and the Emmys Old Fashioned. Sterling Vineyards will provide the wines, pouring its 2014 Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, 2013 Napa Valley Chardonnay and Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, and 2012 Platinum. Fiji Water will return as the official water sponsor.

LA Premier's Kevin Lee is behind the event’s flowers, which this year have a rustic look inspired by the event’s theme. Centerpieces will alternate from tabletop to tabletop between squat birch-wrapped looks and towering, colorful designs; the tallest variety will rise over diners in a 40-inch custom trumpet vase. In all, there will be more than 700 arrangements using more than 50,000 hydrangeas, 80,000 roses, and 20,000 succulents. This the first year florals will also make use of herbs such as French lavender and rosemary in the arrangements.

Additional decor elements will include starry drape and 2,700 yards of fabric covering the ceiling beams, plus 1,000 yards of black fabric covering the truss structure. Fabrics will be a mix of soft, neutral tones with colors like mushroom, taupe, buff, and champagne. Touches of sequin mesh, metallic silks, and floral sequin organzas will add glamour and drama.

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