Technically, I should have written 'My' second Stagecraft. But I have never felt I have deserved any of the awards myself, without the support of my team. So, yes, these 2 awards and any award lifted by me in the future will belong to the team as much as they belong to me.
It was 23rd September, 2016, when we received the Best Event Manager Award of the Year from Usha Uthup's Stagecraft Foundation. Usha di, being the visionary that she is, founded the country's first ever backstage awards for people like us. I attended all the award nights till date, since 2014, and cheered my loudest as my inspiring seniors from the industry had lifted the trophies up in the air. 2014 belonged jointly to ShowHouse and The Event Managers- two of the senior most agencies of Kolkata, 2015 to TMS and Cherry Tree- both having worked on larger than life events ever since their inception. This year also, there were 2 joint winners- A2Z for United Music Festival that won 3 more awards nationally for the sheer excellence as a new IP, and ITW for the Lake Road Durga Puja Alpana- something that catapulted Kolkata trending at the peak digitally.
2016 had been fortunate for us, as we had got unanimously voted because of our event property THE Festival, Kolkata's favourite international live music property, headlined by biggies like Michael Learns To Rock, Poets Of The Fall, Infected Mushroom, Karnivool, The Aristocrats, Skyharbor, etc. It still gives me goosebumps to think about the moment when my name was called on stage by the one and only Mir Afsar Ali, and the organising committee of Stagecraft Awards presented the trophy to me and my team. The love and support that we got from the fraternity and our friends was immense and irreplaceable.
This year was a deja vu, but for a different category. I got recognised as the Best Light Designer of the Year for my live concert light programming in the last year for Fossils. I want to dedicate the trophy to my team, as without them, I am nothing, E365 is nothing. The work that a team does, gets credited to the agency or to the owner, but the applause must go out to each and every team member who works in the field day in and day out.the agency survives because of them, and I want to give back to them whatever small achievement we get to celebrate in life.
And what do I say about Usha Uthup? She is a powerhouse of energy, both onstage and offstage. Her team supported by Gautam Jain and others makes it all the more powerful as an organisation. The jury members are handpicked from various fields of the society- each shining bright at the top of their respective industries. I sincerely hope every backstage hero delivers better just to fulfil the dream of lifting a Stagecraft trophy someday- that would make the Kolkata event industry even more enriched and professional. Long live Stagecraft Awards, long live the hard work!