When Quriosity senior producer Jennifer Lumpkin attended her first AICP Show at the Cultural Center four years ago, she was “overwhelmed” and remembers thinking, “It was gorgeous and so inspiring.”
On Thursday, Nov. 17, she’ll be at the show as a co-producer.
Lumpkin, one of several volunteers who worked on the show, planned to shadow five-year executive producer Gayle McCormick this year and assume the lead role in 2017, when McCormick steps down to accommodate her growing responsibilities as executive producer at Ogilvy.
But two days ago McCormick was called to China for a production assignment and Lumpkin found herself in last minute preparations. Fortunately, she has 12 to 15 volunteers to help her get it done and, she explains, a great deal of valuable support from McCormick.
“Gayle is so on it!” says Lumpkin. “It’s really very effortless for her and shoe’s done a great job, but she also set me up well.”
Outside of New York, Chicago hosts the biggest AICP Show, when more than 1,200 advertising and production guests celebrate the Art and Technique of the American Commercial.
AICP Midwest President Mark Androw of STORY, an AICP member, board member and officer for 27 years, remembers how the annual tradition was born. “Radical Media’s Jon Kamen suggested a show without first, second or third places, no gold, silver or bronze prizes, no speeches,” Androw relates.
“Just something that just highlighted the best work and honored the cinematographers, editors, directors, writers and all the people who contribute to the craft of commercial production.”
The AICP Show Reel, 80-minutes of the best international commercials, is preceded by a sponsor reel — brought in this year by producer Sandy Gordon — that incorporates the logos of every business helping to make the show happen. Dozens of sponsors contribute time and talent to make the event a truly collaborative product of the Chicago ad community.
“We’re competitors,” Lumpkin explains, “but for this one project we all band together and it’s like wow you’re reallya bad-ass at what you do.”
Helmed by Quriosity’s comedic director Kenneth Yoder — whose portfolio includes the lovably bizarre websieries, Rodrigo Quintez — Lumpkin describes this year’s sponsor reel as a “live action comedic narrative” that includes a cameo of her dog, Boone. CRC’s Mark Ruff engineered audio and The Mill’s Luke Morrison was the colorist.
Doors open for AICP Show at 5:45 p.m. Screening of the Show reel at 6 p.m. and the reception rolls from 6:30 p.m. to midnight, with drinks and an international cuisine. Tickets are $175 and may be purchased here.