May 19, 2014: Michael Jackson Returns as Hologram, Why Women’s Conferences Are Big Business, Brands Should Think Twice about Twitter Q&As

By Beth Kormanik May 19, 2014, 7:59 AM EDT

1. MICHAEL JACKSON RETURNS AS HOLOGRAM: It took producers nearly half a year to pull off the hologram performance by Michael Jackson at the Billboard Music Awards, which took place Sunday night in Las Vegas. Billboard: “BBMA producers Dick Clark Productions built a special stage at the rear of the MGM Grand Arena that was used only for the Jackson performance. Dancers moved through aisles as Jackson was seen rising from a throne, walking down steps before going into several trademark routines, a moonwalk being one of the them. Lasers, streams of flames and dancers in ancient costumes were part of the film.”

2. WHY WOMEN’S CONFERENCES ARE BIG BUSINESS: The rise in conferences for women—from the big-name speakers to the corporate sponsors—are a “new kind of girls’ club” that are growing in popularity. The New York Times: “It’s a free-market take on an age-old concept, complete with high-priced tickets and fancy gift bags. The fact that corporations want to be associated with women’s causes at all is certainly progress, said Jessica Valenti, a feminist writer who founded the website Feministing. And yet much as TED has been criticized as too elite, the women’s circuit is not without tension. Criticism has ranged from the price of entry to whether so much talk will actually lead to action.”

3. BRANDS SHOULD THINK TWICE ABOUT TWITTER Q&AS: From the N.F.L. to the N.Y.P.D., brands that have tried Twitter Q&A sessions with the public have faced backlashes and avalanches of negative feedback. Advertising Age: “Looking at some recent epic Twitter Q&A #Fails, it seems clear that brands should stop risking their reputations by asking people to tweet them love messages. Because really, that's what I believe the social media teams thought they'd get when they opened Q&As on Twitter. The truth is: Twitter's easy avenue of communication with consumers is fraught with danger for brands.”


BOSTON:  Create will be held at Fairmont Battery Wharf on June 1. The event pairs chefs and bartenders and local artists; teams create food, drink, and art based on a common theme.

CHICAGO:  The Makeup Show returns to Chicago June 7-8. The event will take place at the Bridgeport Art Center, and feature more than 75 makeup brands.

LAS VEGAS:  Christie Lites has moved to a larger location to accommodate increased demand for its entertainment lighting and rigging services. The new facility is 81,000 square feet with 30-foot ceilings.

Las Vegas Review-Journal: “Buoyed by a fifth straight year of increased revenue, the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority on Thursday approved a $273.2 million budget for the 2015 fiscal year. Directors voted unanimously to approve the budget that includes plans to spend $91 million for advertising, $9 million for special events, $74.7 million for capital expense projects and add five employees.”

LOS ANGELES:  The Natural Resources Defense Council “Thought for Food” benefit is May 29 at Heritage Square in Santa Monica.

Following its recent renovation, Santa Anita Park's private Chandelier Room has launched a guest chef series for the final weeks of the horse racing season.

The fourth annual Los Angeles Food & Wine festival is scheduled for August 21-24 and will take place downtown, according to producers Coastal Luxury Management.

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

MIAMI/SOUTH FLORIDA:  The 18th annual Broward March of Dimes Signature Chefs Auction is set for September 17 at the Westin Diplomat Resort & Spa.

NEW YORK:  Here’s a roundup of New York clubs and chefs opening outposts in the Hamptons this summer. New York Post:

Local event listings from Masterplanner:

TORONTO:  North America’s largest outdoor festival for dogs, Woofstock, will take place May 24-25 at Woodbine Park. Attractions include “Wiener Dog Races” for daschunds and a canine fashion show.

WASHINGTON, D.C.:  Chef David Guas plans to open a second Bayou Bakery, Coffee Bar & Eatery this fall at the historic Hill Center at the Old Naval Hospital.

YOUR NEWS: What are you doing? Tell us:

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With contributions from Jenny Berg in Chicago, Alesandra Dubin in Los Angeles, Mitra Sorrells in Orlando, and Beth Kormanik, Michele Laufik, Jill Menze, and Anna Sekula in New York.

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