#TIFF12: Our fave parties and events

The endless parade of
Starbucks entering the building is slowing and the cases of Red Bull are nearly empty, and what we have left are the memories of an exciting, busy and hectic TIFF. As we’ve said before, this is
the busiest, yet most exciting time of year for us on the fourth floor. We had the opportunity to attend some
pretty awesome parties with our clients and wanted to give you the run-down of our faves as TIFF 2012 comes to a close.


Getting things started off right was the opening night party
at Maple Leaf Square. The red carpet party was attended by some great Canadian stars including Saad Siddiqui, Charlie Carrick, Charlotte Sullivan, Emily Hampshire, Jonas Chernick, Jian Ghomeshi and
Matt Sadowski. There was great dance music, delicious food and a definite energy in the air as TIFF was officially kicked off.


The first day of the Tastemakers Lounge began at 6
a.m. at The Intercontinental Hotel. Excited for a segment with CP24 Breakfast, we got down to business with interviews from Saad Siddiqui and Charlie Carrick. Then
we were thrown off our game when we were asked to be part of the show’s Friday
Morning Dance Party. A little bit of Duran
Duran’s Girls on Film never hurt
anyone!  You can check us out enjoying (embarrassing?) ourselves on live TV here.


We heart the motto this year at the Tastemaker’s Lounge.
Rac Boutique’s Bazaar, part of Fashion’s Night Out on the sixth floor of The Burroughes
building was super busy.  Still in the
office, we could hear the sound of heels clicking up and
down the stairs as Toronto’s most stylish shopped and sipped champagne.  Oh right, and hung out with Adrian Grenier
who also attended and left with a pair of Sully Wong shoes and an Altea tie.

The Drake’s Overdrive Party was a great time. With a long
line and a packed house, it was definitely a place to be last Thursday night. There was great music, great cocktails with clever names (James Dean and Steve McQueen – can you get any cooler?) and a mobile tattoo parlour by Sailor Jerry offering free tattoos and haircuts.  What else could you want? Oh right, a celeb sighting! Adrian Grenier swung
by later that night to hang out, adding even more excitement to an already-exciting party.



The amazing Sailor Jerry Airstream trailer, where party-goers got free tattoos!

Friday morning at the office was full of excitement when some
of the girls reported back about the Soho House Looper after party.  In their
most stylish get-ups, our girls were in the presence of the city’s most talked
about stars: Bruce Willis, Emily Blunt and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, who were out
celebrating their opening night film. 
There was much buzz about gorgeous Emily Blunt and her adorably funny husband
John Krasinski, better known as everyone’s fave Jim Halpert on The Office.


Image Source.
Saturday’s HELLO! Hollywood party at The Ritz-Carlton was also a highlight. Our
Rising Stars , Charlie Carrick, Connor Jessup, Tatiana Maslany and Charlotte
Sullivan were hanging out with Love It or
List It’s
Hilary Farr, CBC’s Jian Ghomeshi, the Drake Hotel’s Jeff Stober and actors Jonas Chernick and Emily Hampshire. There was a huge crowd and lots of mingling and industry chit-chat that took place in the swank Ritz ballroom.

Sunday afternoon brought along the Annual Canadian Film Centre barbeque, which celebrates the “independent creative spirit” and is always one of our favourite TIFF events. We love the casual vibe and delicious smell of grilled burgers, which makes for a nice change from the dim party lights, high heels and fancy passed appetizers we’ve been seeing all week.  There was even a Jason Priestley sighting which brought us back to the great “Brandon vs. Dylan” debate (we can’t wait for his turn in an upcoming Canadian Stage production – stay tuned!).

Another fave of ours is Festival Music House which ran for three nights this week. The MOD club held intimate concerts by
 Adam Cohen, Wintersleep, Yukon Blonde, Young Empires and Down With Webster. We made some new musical discoveries, loving the sets that Humans, Monster Truck and Hey Ocean! brought. Although these are big names in the music scene, the whole event had a very different vibe.  It was an intimate
setting where we got to rock out in a really chill venue with film industry peeps.



Shawn Hook sings his heart out, Down With Webster’s drum solo, part of our FMH crew, and Monster Truck rockin’ out – #FestivalMusicHouse memories.

In between all of these amazing events, and little cat naps,
we are excited to see our city buzzing with excitement.  We’ve been out and about and feeling
Hollywood in the air.  The bright lights
of T.O. are providing us with endless amounts of energy that we’re hoping will
last take us through the last few days of the festival.








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#TIFF12: Festival Music House

The place to be mid-TIFF? Festival Music House! We’re looking forward to being there for the next three nights, at this event that showcases live Canadian music to visiting TIFF industry folks.

One of the most sought-after parties of the festival, FMH is back at the Mod Club for its annual
three-night long concert, from Monday September 10 to Wednesday, September 12, at the Mod Club. This year features Canadian music
talent from a range of genres and it’s a pretty stacked lineup:



Monday, September 10:
Jeremy Fisher, Adam CohenKathleen EdwardsWintersleep and Monster Truck.


Tuesday, September 11:
Humans, PS I Love YouHey Ocean!Dan Mangan and Yukon Blonde.


Wednesday, September 12:
Shawn Hook, Jason CollettGrand AnalogYoung Empires and Down With Webster.


Yes, it is an intimate, invite-only event where directors, producers, writers and music supervisors rub shoulders. If you’re not a part of the industry, you can still get a sense of the nights that are about to unfold, with this playlist that we’ve put together. Put it on and it will feel like you’re there, almost.


Follow all the action at #FestivalMusicHouse and #rockitTIFF!


TIFF12: Behind the scenes at TIFF

On the eve of TIFF ’12, the busiest time of year on the fourth floor, the building is abuzz with phone calls, scheduling, organizing, and the inevitable rescheduling.  With visions of
red carpets and fabulous parties in our dreams, during the day, the rock-it promo team is running on pure adrenaline, and loving every minute of
it! Today, we give you an inside look at some of the awesome events that we’re working on for this year’s
festival because, as busy as we are, this is also the most
exciting time to be a publicist in Toronto.

On opening day, we’re starting off on the
right foot with a shopping event to coincide with Fashion’s Night OutRAC Boutique is hosting its second annual
Bazaar which promises an amazing shopping experience. Held in the historic Burroughes
building on Queen Street West, The Bazaar will feature vendors from across Toronto who
have joined forces to offer the best of the city’s fashions to the public. 

While some of us will be helping Toronto’s most fashionable, others will be at the
Drake Hotel to celebrate the launch of TIFF with a blow-out bash sponsored by Stella Artois and Sailor Jerry. Bring your
inner rock star and take advantage of free tattoos and hair cuts from the
Sailor Jerry Airstream and party along to performances by indie
superstars Still Life Still and Dinosaur Bones before The Darcys headline the main stage.

The Darcys
Image Source

From
September 10 to 12, we’ll be working at
the third
annual 
Festival Music House, a three night concert taking place at the Mod Club. This invite-only,
intimate concert series provides a platform for both seasoned and
up-and-coming Canadian acts including
Kathleen Edwards, Wintersleep, Yukon Blonde, Young Empires and Down With Webster.

Down With Webster
Image Source

We’re also representing some all-star Canadian talent, including Jian Ghomeshi, Emily Hampshire, Saad Siddiqui and Jonas Chernick.  We’ll be escorting clients down the red carpet at events while juggling with
interview requests, movie screenings and late-night parties.

The girls of the fourth floor will also be seen nightly at Soho House Toronto, as it acts as host to some of TIFF’s hottest parties. The evenings feature signature cocktails from Grey Goose, great music and a chill vibe, making it a hotspot for visiting talent.

With all this on the go (and more!), being a publicist  is kind of reminiscent
of being a Girl Scout; we always have to be prepared. There’s a constant checklist running through
our brains and here are some items/life-savers that you can find in our
cutest (yet most functional) purses (cross-strap, natch) at any time from September 6 to 16:

  • A pair of squishable flats
  • Pens/hi-lighters
  • Cell phone and charger
  • Extra cell phone!
  • Vitamins
  • Water
  • Hair elastics
  • Gum 
  • Band-aids
  • Energy bars, snacks and Redbull
  • Lip gloss
Stay updated throughout the
festival by following our Twitter hashtag
#rockitTIFF. We’re ready for you, TIFF 2012! 
Here’s to the start of a wonderful 11 days full of hard work, a bit of glitz, a dash of glam, tired
feet, late nights, and a whole lot of fun!



City Living: Best moments from TIFF 2011

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is undoubtedly one of the most exciting, hectic and energized times of year for the fourth floor. The film fest creates the type of atmosphere that we thrive on and despite the fact that we are pulling 18-hour days, we really do love it. We may say we’re stressed out and tired but the truth is, we’re catching a buzz from the entire experience and relishing every moment. Once the red carpets are rolled up and the celebs are on to their next destination, we are left with new experiences and great memories.
We have put together our most unforgettable moments from TIFF 2011. We want to hear your stories as well, so please tweet, comment and share with us.
Watching K’naan perform to a small crowd of about 350 people at Festival Music House, front and center, and hearing his yet-unreleased tracks performed live for the first time.
Image courtesy of JJ Thompson.
Bringing Sarah Silverman from the wrong red carpet at the Alliance party to the right red carpet. She was very cool and laid back, and took it all in stride. We got to chat with her for 10 minutes, and laughing with a comedian is the best experience.

Image courtesy of Jonathan Leibson/Getty Images.

Chatting with The Sheepdogs during soundcheck, then hearing them for the first time at Festival Music House. They are now a huge fourth floor favourite, and we can’t wait to see them when they come back in November. Filmmakers – USE CANADIAN MUSIC!
 Image courtesy of Ryan Emberley.

Seeing Drizzy ride up to the Breakaway premiere in a rickshaw. Way to keep it real, Drake. 


Catching a glimpse of the very chic Tilda Swinton on our way back from the Tastemakers Lounge. Girl crush solidified.

Meeting Backstreet Boy Howie D. at the Hello! Canada party. A childhood dream long in the making. He’s just as cute in real life. 
 Our friend Tracy with Howie D.

Hitting the Strombo party late-night and turning around on the patio to find Bono and K’naan standing immediately behind us. The party was immediately amped up a notch (or five).

Everyone getting ready at the office each afternoon for the night ahead was probably the most fun. Checking out everyone’s outfits, helping with styling advice, zippers and hair – definitely some serious bonding moments, which helped us get through the long hours.  

Our office was basically everyone’s closet for two weeks.

Finally, from Debra, who quite possibly worked the most hours out of us all (and saw the most action!): 

So many favourite moments this year. Between Tastemakers, the Alliance red carpet, Harry Rosen Moth Diaries party, Festival Music House, the four films I worked on – it’s hard to pick just one! I did love being at the Soho House for the Ides of March cocktail party. It was intimate, not too busy and filled with power execs and talent like George Clooney, Ryan Gosling, Evan Rachel Wood, Marisa Tomei and more. Was one of those ‘it’s definitely TIFF’ moments. Also loved dancing my butt off to Sam Roberts at FMH. Until next year…

City Living: Our favourite TIFF memories

Like tons of people in the city, once the air starts getting a little cooler at the end of the summer, we can’t help but feel a little je ne sais quoi. We’re counting down the days for one of our favourite times of the year, TIFF, officially beginning September 8.


We’re totally able to rock 12-hour (+) workdays with very little sleep, and sometimes without being able to share epic moments with our BFFs. The one thing that gets us through these 10 awesomely chaotic days are great moments that make our day (or in many cases) our night, and today we share a select few with you from TIFF’s past.

Think you’ve heard it all before when it comes to film festival? Bet you’ve never heard many of our faves, often from behind the scenes or at late-night gigs. From our memory vaults to you, we’ll be sure to share more after this TIFF is over. Enjoy.

  • Gord Downie closing out Festival Music House last year, playing a solo set to a few hundred lucky people.
  • Oprah literally shutting down all of Yorkville when she attended the ONEXONE party in 2009.
Image source.
  • Julian Schnabel conducting interviews in his silk pyjamas while in town promoting The Diving Bell and the Butterfly.
Julian wearing his infamous purple sleepwear at the AGO (image via LaineyGossip).
  • Sarah Ferguson’s (a.k.a. the original Fergie, the Duchess of York) six Blackberries – each one is for a different business/charity/personal function and they were carried around in a custom-made Louis Vuitton case that accommodated all six.

  • Being at the same party (for Burn After Reading) as Brad Pitt, Mark Ruffalo, the Coen Brothers, Jeremy Piven and Frances McDormand and realizing there was no VIP section. Because of course, the whole party was VIP (so how did we get in?).
Part of the Burn After Reading cast we spotted at the after-party.

TIFF participants: What are your favourite memories? Tweet us @rockitpromo.

A chat with Zeus

Last week, two ladies from the fourth floor got a chance to check out some live music at XM Radio’s Verge Music Awards. They won all-access passes to see fourth floor faves Tokyo Police Club and Gord Downie perform at The Mod Club (thanks, beat scene!). 
The night was great – busy, good music and lots of buzz about the awards (all of which came with a nice cash prize.). Zeus, formerly Jason Collett’s back-up band, took home the coveted Album of the Year, beating out bands like Arcade Fire, Stars, Broken Social Scene and Hot Hot Heat. 
 Tour manager Jeremy proudly holding the “Album Of The Year” award.
The band was thrilled with their win, and Neil Quin and Mike O’Brien were more than happy to chat with us about their upcoming plans. They’re taking part in Canadian Music Week, playing tomorrow night at The Horsehoe Tavern at 12:20 a.m. They played to a packed house last year, so this show is sure to be just as busy, especially with their latest coup. 
Next, they’ll release their double-sided single Permanant Scar/The Darkness in April on Arts and Crafts. Permanant Scar is a “harmony-laden rock and roll” track, while The Darkness is described as “a thoughtful and moody track”. Can’t wait to hear it, and the new album they’re recording this October.
Neil, Christina and Mike grinning from ear-to-ear after the win is announced (well, at least Christina is). 
We spent the rest of the evening just chatting with them about life in general, including a serious discussion about brunch in Toronto. We were fans before, but are bigger fans now after getting to know them a bit. Here’s hoping that they continue to be recognized for their great music.

Stream Zeus live here, from CBC Radio 3, and find out for yourself what all the hype is about. You won’t be disappointed.

TIFF’10: Our favourite moments

Annnd… it’s over. TIFF’10 was amazing. So much happened, and here are some of our favourite highlights:

Debra
I have many favourite memories about TIFF 2010, but working with Helen Mirren was an extraordinary privilege. At the end of a long day together, I was admiring her Cartier ring and she took it off and told me try it on. Such a fun, sweet moment. And a really, really amazing ring on a really, really amazing lady.

Ashley:
1. To keep warm while working the red carpet for the Alliance Films TIFF celebration, I started humming Broadway show tunes. Just as “If I were a Rich Man…” was flitting through my head, a black SUV pulled up and a man named Harvey got out. I may have *accidentally* started a rock-it-wide rumour that Harvey Fierstein (who originated the role of Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof) had arrived, rather than Harvey Weinstein.  Luckily, my colleagues were quick to pull my head out of the stars.
2.  Witnessing PR manager, Lisa Power, down a full bottle of Echinacea in less than a week to combat TIFF-borne illnesses.
   
Abby
1. We were hired to work the red carpet and guest list for a few pretty high-profile events. There was one person who kept trying to crash the parties. I’m not sure that she realized that we were the same people running each event, as she kept coming up with different reasons as to why she should be let in. First, she was a media member. Then, her French boyfriend was on the list. Next, her Canadian filmmaker boyfriend emailed to get her on a list. Finally, she became the VP of a music company. It was pretty entertaining to see the creative ways she kept trying to get in. A for effort. Plus, it made us laugh when we were tired and stressed. 

2. Turning down a $200-bribe to let some guys into the private Festival Music House event. My pride & ethics say “way to go” (as does my boss), but my bank account says I’m an idiot. 

Christina

Walking Juliette Lewis down the red carpet at the Alliance Films fiesta.





Alana
My favourite moment was going to Zach Galifianakis’ It’s Kind Of A Funny Story after party with the girls from rock-it.

Listening to Coeur de Pirate at Festival Music House – the coolest TIFF event ever!  

Lisa

Checking out The Raccoons at Festival Music House.

I also enjoyed getting my mini mani from Joe Fresh Beauty at Tastemakers Lounge.

Matt: 
Getting psyched to see City and Colour at Festival Music House, but then getting a call from babysitter that my daughter woke up barfing. Needless to say, my evening ended on my knees with a sponge, instead swaying in sweaty mob of people.  
1. Seeing the gorgeous Ryan Kwanten (from my favourite show True Blood) and the swaggalicious Terrence Howard at our Tastemakers Lounge at the Intercontinental Hotel Yorkville.
2. Getting to spend quality time with my client, the lovely actress Emily Hampshire. She lives in L.A. so I rarely get to actually hang out with her – and she is one cool and entertaining lady.