Having garnered recognition as one of the largest events and entertainment companies in India, Wizcraft International Entertainment has paved the way for the events and experiential marketing sector in India. Over the last two decades, Wizcraft has brought India to the forefront of global attention with events of phenomenal credence in India and abroad.
The biggest South Asian entertainment event in the film industry, IIFA, is the brainchild of Wizcraft and has gained a stupendous amount of mileage in taking Indian cinema to foreign shores. Having grown from a one day awards ceremony to a mega three day weekend extravaganza, the IIFA Weekend and Awards extends to more than cinema highlighting business, trade and tourism between the two countries as well.
Having successfully established a benchmark of excellence for Indian Cinema, Wizcraft decided to take a similar initiative forward for Indian music. The vision grew into the Global Indian Music Awards (GIMA), wholly committed to honouring the very best of Indian music. Having received phenomenal support from the industry as well as audiences, GIMA is all set to embark on its second awards function later this year.
Having made their mark as the prime contender for entertainment events with the Commonwealth Games ceremonies last year and the ICC World Cup ceremonies, Wizcraft is on its way to becoming the preferred candidate for organizing sports ceremonies. The first sports event that Wizcraft undertook was the National Games in 2002. The success of this show led them to realise the potential they harbored to take on events of this scale. The main aspects considered when bidding for a sporting event is the experience a company has in producing large scale events as well as the degree of credibility held by the bidders in question. With the high reputation that Wizcraft has developed over the years, it seemed only prudent that they be given the responsibility of showcasing India to the world with the Commonwealth Games held in Delhi.
With the eyes of the world on India, the opening and closing ceremonies of the Commonwealth Games in Delhi were the diamond in the crown. The star of the show, the large helium Aerostat captured the attention and hearts of millions watching, as a New India emerged, a land of opportunity and potential where culture and tradition reign.
Music takes centrestage
The magic of the show however was determined not only by the incredible technology that was used but also by the music, an inherently important part of any event. Large ceremonies warrant the use of music that has been especially developed to complement the theme and context of the event. Oftentimes, the songs composed for these events go above and beyond the intended role they were meant to play, achieving the status of anthems depending on the significance of the event. For the XIX Commonwealth Games, all of the tracks except Jiyo Utho Badho Jeeto were created especially for the show.
The concept of the show was to showcase India to the world, a culturally rich country with so many diverse sub-cultures. It was imperative that the focus was on the fact that India is a land of individuals, where diversity thrives. The acts were put together keeping these parameters in mind. The children of Delhi performed the Swagatam act to welcome the world to India. There were different tribal drummers from different parts of India, followed by the child prodigy Keshav on tabla. The yoga demonstration involved people who had imbibed the principles of yoga and incorporated it into their daily lives.
A particularly beautiful track was composed for the act called The Great Indian Journey. Taking the form of a train, the act featured dabbawallahs, fishermen, cyclewallahs, holi-colour sellers, mithaiwallahs, the rickshawwallahs and also futuristic India with its businessmen, politicians, city life and Bollywood lifestyle. All these people co-exist in our diverse country with each having carved a niche for themselves. Wizcraft brought to light the beauty of our country and the sounds that integrated all of these elements showcasing, ‘Incredible India’.
A R Rahman closed the show with a brilliant rendition of the Games’ Anthem Jiyo Utho Badho Jeeto, which served as a beautiful finale to a spectacular opening ceremony. The closing ceremony bid a fond farewell to the participants who hailed from 71 countries and territories across the Commonwealth with an amalgamation of the music and sounds that are typically characteristic of India. The Commonwealth Games, ridden with rumours of corruption, were subject to some negative publicity. However, a dazzling opening ceremony changed the tune.
Basking in the afterglow of the Commonwealth ceremonies, Wizcraft took on yet another event of mammoth proportions, the opening ceremony of the 10th International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup. Keen to portray the cultural wealth of all three host countries Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh, the opening ceremony, with a combined display of music, lights and sound, captured the attention of the world with its inspired pyrotechnics, aerial cricket and displays of the diverse heritage and tradition of each host country. The opening ceremony also saw Canadian rock star Bryan Adams regale the audience with a performance of some of his most popular song including the iconic Summer of 69.
Having won the bid for an event, there is great responsibility involved when developing the theme for the event. The client, administration or the organization will generally provide a basic brief to be followed but the creative brainstorming that ensues is critical and a lot of care has to be taken when coming up with the details. The magnitude of the event is important because the larger the event, the bigger the canvas and the greater the scope for creativity. Wizcraft has always managed to strike a great balance between staying true to the theme while exploring its creative boundaries and thus delivering a great final show.
As with sports ceremonies, Wizcraft has also brought several international artists to India including the late Michael Jackson. With any international artist, there are certain obstacles in bringing them to India, particularly Mumbai. Once a schedule is set for the artist and there is a definitive list of areas they are touring in the subcontinent, there is a deliberation on the suitability of that artist to perform in certain parts of the country. This is widely dependant on the popularity of the artist in India, their record sales and various other factors.
Artists work on a day-to-day agenda and great care is taken to co-ordinate their schedules and ensure they leave in time for the next show. Timing is the most crucial aspect. India rarely features on artists’ world tour calendars so it takes a lot of work to organise concerts for international artists. As with any event, there are bound to be setbacks but the important thing is to have a positive attitude and the right skills to deal with any untoward incidents that may take place. Problems vary from event to event, be it issues with lack of time for preparation, volume of the audience and myriad other obstacles but with a capable crew and years of experience, they can all be overcome. A particular hurdle when organising events in Mumbai is that of licenses. Mumbai has become one of the most expensive cities to organise events, particularly concerts and music shows.
The road ahead
As far as a plan for the future goes, Wizcraft is eager to organise and produce much more than in terms of sports ceremonies, concerts and myriad other public events for a vast variety of clients on a global scale. Moreover, they are all set to do this in the true Wiz spirit with great enthusiasm and passion. With exceptional capability, industry experience and technological know-how in the industry, Wizcraft has earned the reputation as the pinnacle of excellence in event organisers. It is their zeal for bringing something new to every event they do that makes them pioneers in this field.