Virtual Awards Extravaganza!

Blackhawk Media Dazzles With Live Virtual Event

In the midst of the 2020 Pandemic, companies all over the globe struggled to keep their workforce morale up and engage with their team leaders in a meaningful way.  As a multi-faceted brand agency, Blackhawk Media was able to assist by bringing best-of-breed music, audio, and virtual stage technology to bear to create a one-of-a-kind experience for Bristol Myers Squibb's annual awards event.  In lieu of any kind of personal gathering due to COVID-19 safety protocols, the 2020 awards ceremony needed to be done 100% virtually, while also feeling like a high quality live performance.

Multiple creative disciplines were involved in this massive undertaking, with multiple brand and design agencies working in concert with each other on a tight timeline.  The result was a virtual event that felt like a network broadcast, with executives participating live from all over the world simultaneously.

“The coordination between three agencies...was a challenge... but we were all bringing our best together, just like the show intro!”

Pulling out all the stops - 8 virtual cameras were used to render over 11,000 frames of animation to create a broadcast award show look and feel.

The Blackhawk Media creative worked closely with Dragonfly Design Group to break up the design and final deliverables. The Blackhawk Media team was put in charge of providing the music and singing performances, as well as the virtual stage flythrough videos, which included animated dancers featuring various executives "bobble heads" doing a complete dance number! "In total we had over 11,000 frames of animation to produce, and all the characters had to be built from scratch- A massive undertaking", comments Blackhawk Media's Matt Moses, the lead animator and visual effects producer on the project.  

Listen to Pat Rickey's show music:

The Blackhawk Media team also produced all of the original music and enlisted the voice talents of Los Angeles-based Vanessa Bryan, a professional singer and voice teacher who has worked with the likes of Gwen Stefani and Lady Gaga.  "Vanessa's voice is so powerful and lends itself to the flash and sizzle that we were looking for in an award show opener", says Blackhawk Media Composer and Founder, Pat Rickey. "She knocked it out of the park and I still cannot believe how great it all came together.  This holds up against most network broadcast events!", says Rickey.

An Alaskan born vocal/performance coach based in Los Angeles, Vanessa Bryan has trained artists extensively in the craft of Vocal Performance for over 15 years. Vanessa has toured the world as a vocalist and vocal coach sharing the stage with artists such as: Olivia Holt, Idina Menzel, Gwen Stefani, Kidz Bop, The Killers and a long list of independent artists and producers. She is featured on records released by Idina Menzel and Lady Gaga.  She has also lent her voice to national commercial spots for television & film. Contact:

Listen to the final show music featuring Vanessa Bryan:

"The coordination required between three agencies, Blackhawk Media, Dragonfly Design Group, and Olgilvy, and the end client requests kept us all busy and challenged, yet we were all just as excited to see the daily progress.  The show looked and sounded so good! This was a fun project and we were all bringing our best together, just like the show intro!" Eric Vejby, Blackhawk Media Brand Strategist, remembers.

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