Seven years ago, then under-publicized Lucerne Festival faced significant competition from other premier European festivals (e.g. Salzburg, Edinburgh, Glyndebourne, etc.). The festival-going public has long been accustomed to new and commissioned opera works, and the Lucerne Festival did not have an artistically attractive venue for new works.
Over a six-year the Hoffman team successfully captured and sustained critical and public interest on behalf of the Lucerne Festival by focusing on its unusual, late-night presentations, composer residencies, the new concert hall by Jean Nouvel, and the city itself. We worked closely with the Artistic Director, ensuring that his vision was incorporated into our campaigns.
For Lucerne Festival , the resulting audience and media response was overwhelming: The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, Financial Times, Le Monde, El Pais, Die Welt, etc., all covered the Festival's new hall and newly commissioned works with great enthusiasm. Audience attendance increased by 15 percent.
One of the many goals that Luminato had in its first year(2007) of what it believed would be the evolution of a yearly creation, was to reach different media throughout the world in order to begin planting seeds of this one-of-a-kind festival presentation. As Janice Price, the CEO of the Festival stated “We Canadians live with a constant awareness of having to differentiate ourselves culturally from the gigantic neighbor to the South.”
With the above-mentioned Challenge in mind, the Hoffman team used various methods of communication to stimulate interest in countries as distant as Hong Kong, Spain, and Germany, and as nearby as New York City, knowing from its experience, that a cumulative effort would be necessary to begin the process of impacting worldwide with Media Blasts, Media Alerts, Press Releases, and of course personal contacts and invitations to journalists to attend the Festival.
By effectively establishing the fact that a fundamental aspect of Luminato is Toronto being a curatorial place for that city's arts groups and the most immigrant intensive city in the world, we focused on the cultural mosaic of the city, we echoed what Ms. Price told the Wall Street Journal: "We wouldn't have seen this in Toronto if it weren't for Luminato." In sum, the crowd were enormous and the 2008 Festival was an even greater success.