One of the most interesting events to take place in Montreal in a dog’s age – if Francis Ford Coppola, Arianna Huffington and Michael Eisner are of interest to you – is about to break new global ground. From May 22 to 25, many of the best and brightest minds in business, entertainment, technology and new media will come together and teach each other how to be even better at the inaugural C2-MTL conference…
The brainchild of Montreal creative agency Sid Lee (which specializes in innovative, outside-the-box marketing strategies for high-profile clients such as Cirque du Soleil, adidas and Red Bull, among many others), C2-MTL aims to reinvent archaic and staid notions of the business conference.
Don’t expect brain-paralyzing PowerPoint presentations here. Instead, look for next-level interactive experiences and a top-shelf roster of speakers, including aforementioned film director Francis Ford Coppola, online media mogul Ariana Huffington and former Disney CEO Michael Eisner, as well as top executives from Cirque du Soleil, Google, DreamWorks, Autodesk, Moment Factory, Fast Company and many more. They’ll be employing the latest technologies in their lively presentations as they rally broadly around the central theme, that of creativity being the central driver of business in the future.
Situated in the sprawling New City Gas industrial complex in Griffintown, this turn-of-the-century supplier of energy to downtown Montreal has been reconceived and rebuilt as C2-MTL’s “Village of Innovation”, the central hub around which this one-of-a-kind conference will revolve.
This central rallying point is a quick hop to some of the best eating and entertainment options in the city, like the much-talked about Joe Beef (where the creativity is in the kitchen) and Toque!, the Old Montreal home of the city’s leading culinary light, Chef Normand Laprise. Also in Old MTL, and of particular noteworthiness, the latest no-creative-holds-barred Cirque du Soleil show, Amaluna, is up and running under its very own specially-constructed Big Top. It’s a masterful multidisciplinary entertainment experience from an organization that specializes in masterful multidisciplinary entertainment experiences.
Back at C2-MTL, corporate leaders and burgeoning entrepreneurs will be busy marrying commerce and creativity as they start to build a framework for the future of business. Heady stuff. But with the work comes the play, or perhaps we should say Play, as legendary New York electronic music DJ/producer Moby has been tapped to perform at C2-MTL’s spectacular May 24 closing party, titled the Illumination Grand Finale, which will benefit from some ambitious ambience courtesy of homegrown multimedia memory makers Moment Factory and creative event specialists Circo de Bakuza. This event is open to the public so, word to the wise, get tickets while you can. Also open to the public (and free!), on May 26, is the interactive and immersive E-merge exhibition organized by Art Souterrain, as well as a wealth of C2 content that will broadcast live on their website.
C2-MTL, May 22-25, 2012
Guest blogger Jamie O’Meara is a Montreal editor and journalist who covers arts, culture and music. Formerly the editor in chief of Hour Magazine, he is now an editor at Roverarts.com.