IMAX Can Rivet Corporate Trainees

November 8, 2004
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GRAND RAPIDS — Area businesses are familiar with the entertainment options available at Celebration Cinema, from its movies and games to its adjoining restaurants and IMAX Theater.

Many also have become acquainted with its Wave Room banquet facility and conference rooms.

But a handful of businesses in West Michigan also have discovered the possibilities of integrating the two.

“What sets us apart from our competition is that we’re inside a movie theater,” explained Cara Maat, Celebration sales and event manager.

“Film can be a very powerful tool in terms of focus and motivation for managers or any level of employee.”

IMAX is already being used as an entertainment option for meetings held at Celebration, but with help from Intaglio Visual Arts and Technologies, the large-screen films could become a popular theme and engaging tool for corporate meetings.

“There is a very powerful combination of different venues,” said Kirk Grimshaw, Intaglio’s co-founder. “Banquet venue, breakout rooms, auditoriums. There are so many different types of meetings that can happen in all those spaces.”

In Grimshaw’s experience, large meetings most often take place in general purpose rooms, many times with the audience sitting at large round tables.

From the start, at least a third of the audience has its back to the presenter. The theater auditorium allows for eye-to-eye contact between the speaker and audience, while eliminating all the additional distractions a banquet room might have.

“Even out of that environment, there is still a powerful psychological challenge of getting people’s attention,” Grimshaw said.

“They walk in with all this baggage in their head. If you start the event with an IMAX film, it will clear out all that baggage. Those theater experiences are so overwhelming and powerful, it’s a great cleansing tool of the mind.”

Beginning an event with a screening of “Everest” or “Shackleton” not only would eliminate thoughts of fantasy football or credit cards, but also engage the audience with the themes of perseverance, teamwork and survival typical of IMAX films.

“In the past, people would create their own thematic material,” said Peter Larson, Intaglio’s other founder. “Here the production values have already been created, and they deal with great business themes.”

IMAX, along with the arcade, restaurants, catering and other entertainment options available at Celebration, has made it the choice of many companies for employee outings, but seldom has IMAX been used as a meeting theme.

Intaglio can apply media such as PowerPoint and video-conferencing to the big screen, and can customize the IMAX film presentation to the client. The use of Intaglio’s services with IMAX can allow presenters to not only engage the audience, but better deliver the message as well.   

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