Posted tagged ‘Essence Entertainment’

How Do I Choose My First Dance Wedding Song?

August 8, 2012


Planning a wedding can seem overwhelming at times…and even a routine formality can be hard to approach and decide upon.

One of these is picking your First Dance Wedding Song.  It may be something you’ve been thinking about for a long time and you know just the song you want to use!  That’s great!

Or…you don’t have a song in mind, and you’re not sure where to begin…and there are SO MANY songs to choose from…how do I start!

Here are some helpful tips from TheKnotTV about how to go about picking a song for your First Dance as well as a few specific suggestions.

See also our Ask Mike! videos:  Ask Mike! Video Playlist.

There is also an attached article (see below) that has a list of suggestions.

Image representing The Knot as depicted in Cru...

Your First Dance should be something you look forward to – not to mention, it’s a rare private moment with your new spouse on an otherwise busy day.  So pick a song you love… a song which is meaningful to you and your fiance… a song which is sentimental to your family (i.e., the song your parents used at their wedding)… a song you can easily and comfortably dance to… a song that is a reflection of your personalities…

Anything goes – this is your moment – pick the song YOU want!!  :)

Hope this helped!  Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or want some additional assistance with this part of your wedding day!


Featured Performer – DJ Paul Ullrich

July 26, 2012


So sorry if Bastille Day Video was not visible in your previous email – please click here for easy access to the previous Blog Post where video is viewable.  Thanks!

DJ Paul Ullrich

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DJ Paul came by today – always great to have our performers swing by for a visit!  Great seeing you, Paul!  (Enjoy his video below!)

“Thank you to our DJ, Paul, for an amazing job at our company’s holiday party. Paul has a great personality and is extremely professional. His extensive knowledge of music allowed him to keep all age ranges at our party entertained. The dance floor was packed all night!”

- Jamie (St. Regis Hotel)

“Our guests enjoyed Paul. Good variety of music. He had a lot of music that was requested.”

- Cumming Corporation Holiday Party (Pala Casino & Grand Cabaret)

Just one more example of our fabulous DJs!

Paul can also provide live vocals at your event, if requested.

Unici Casa Bastille Day Event VIDEO

July 25, 2012

As promised, here’s a peek into the fabulous event in which we participated on Saturday, July 14th, 2012.

Thanks to John at Godfather Films for putting this together!

Please help support all of the fabulous vendors who made this event such a success!  (See List with Links to Websites on previous Post; see Credits at end of film.)

(Essence Entertainment had the great pleasure and honor in providing all live and costumed entertainment for this event!)


Unici Casa Bastille Day Celebration Event

July 18, 2012

Mike at Unici Casa Event

It’s so nice when someone takes the time to write a note of appreciation…

Roger Hampton, General Manager, Unici Casa, just sent Mike a ‘thank you’ regarding Essence Entertainment’s contribution to the Unici Casa Bastille Day Celebration event held on Saturday, July 14, 2012, at their property in Culver City, CA.  It’s nice to hear when a production team like Roger and Michael Foroutan, Artistic Director/Founder/CEO, of a fabulous site like Unici Casa have confidence in what you do!

Mike, you are the wizard of entertainment.  It’s no wonder you have 18 gigs a weekend!  The mime with his fabulous vintage costume, chico the stilt walker was perfect with his harlequin costume and little umbrella, the accordion player was awesome.  Your band kept the majority of the attention and they were so gracious for the changes of announcements, totally won everyone over!  The live table and her court…seriously?  Beyond what I expected…always stayed in character and so entertaining and gorgeous!  The girl on our bed in Casa Murano…(thank you to Michael Foroutan for this idea and especially to Mike Steffens from Essence for making it happen in the final hours) she was a major hit!  Sean your DJ kept them pumping and was so gracious about our guest DJ’s appearance.  You never cease to amaze me with the arsenal of entertainment at your finger tips!                    - Roger Hampton, Unici Casa

Wow – you can’t buy, beg, borrow or steal that kind of endorsement!

Thank you, Roger, and thanks to the rest of your terrific team at Unici Casa!

(See list of all participating vendors below slide show.)

Other people are talking:

Christina Logan,, RoK Events, Unici Casa. Lloyd Klein.

Enjoy a few pics from Mike’s cell phone.  We’ll get the professional shots out soon!

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The fabulous Team that made it all happen:

Unici Casa
Essence Entertainment
24 Carrots Catering
RoK Events
BTB Event Production
Stretta Apparel
Line 204
Archive Vintage Rentals
Rayce PR and Marketing
Godfather Films
Gina Sabatella Photography
M&S Valet
Draken Security
Technical Event Partners
Eddie Zaratsian

More on all this to come!

7 Tips to Stay Organized with Wedding Planning

July 13, 2012

Here’s a Blog Post from a local Wedding Coordinator, Kerri Hatter – organizing tips are always handy to have!  Thanks, Kerri!

7 Tips to Stay Organized

June 19th, 2012

It’s officially “wedding season” so for many of you, crunch time is quickly approaching as you figure out the final details of your big day.  No doubt about  it, planning for a wedding can be stressful, but you can handle the stress by staying organized rather than turning into a bridezilla!  Aside from the obvious – hiring a coordinator, below are some other  tips that will be sure to keep you organized and let you relax and enjoy the big day.

  1. First, I recommend buying a calendar and a wedding-specific binder. Make dividers for each section and keep all contracts, vendor information, and timelines in the binder so it’s easy to find. Mark up the calendar with days for when items need to be accomplished.
  2. Share duties with your partner. Make your groom feel like he has a part in the planning (remember this is his day too). By talking and sharing, you both will be able to foresee and avoid any future problems.  Grooms come up with some of the best ideas too, so make sure to include him and let him add his personal touch to the big day too.
  3. Set aside specific days to accomplish tasks and enlist friends and family to help.  It takes so much less time to stuff envelopes and assemble favors when you do it as a team and it’s an easy way to let people help. You will get a lot more done by using your specific wedding planning days and you will feel much more relaxed during your time off.  It’s also important to be flexible when planning so you don’t get bogged down.
  4. Figure out a budget on paper. Find out who will be paying for the wedding and come up with numbers for each category, ie: food, music, flowers…  and don’t forget tipping and misc. last minutes items!
  5. Create a timeline for the week of the wedding.  Make sure you allow enough time for all your tasks to be completed, ie: when to pick up tuxes, dropping off items to your venue, hair/makeup…
  6. Make decisions and then move on.  There is so much information available to us these days that you can go crazy looking at websites and seeing new ideas.  Once you have decided on your floral design, linen colors, table numbers, etc. then stop looking at those items on line!
  7. Of course, hire a coordinator!  If you have put this much time into your planning, leave it to the experts to execute it for you the day of the wedding.

You can find Kerri and many other helpful vendors at ABC – Association of Bridal Consultants.  Here’s a link to my local chapter in Orange County, CA.  However, visit the national website to find a chapter in your area!

Do you have a great “Elevator Speech”?

July 11, 2012

Your 30-second message is not about educating, explaining, or boring your acquaintance; it’s about sparking enough interest to prompt them to do something; ask for your card, introduce you to someone you should know, or even make an appointment to learn more.  If you give them a reason to want to know more, they will act on their instinct.

Many of you are business owners or are in sales of some sort…and you have many opportunities to meet new people, talk about what you do, and create new relationships.

That said, one of the most powerful tools to have is a strong, memorable Elevator Speech (or Elevator Pitch or Elevator Statement), with a solid Call To Action.

What is an Elevator Speech?  Here’s what Wikipedia has to say:

An elevator pitch (or elevator speech or elevator statement) is a short summary used to quickly and simply define a product, service, or organization and its value proposition.  The name “elevator pitch” reflects the idea that it should be possible to deliver the summary in the time span of an elevator ride, or approximately thirty seconds to two minutes.  In The Perfect Elevator Speech, Aileen Pincus states that an elevator speech should “sum up unique aspects of your service or product in a way that excites others.”

So…you may be at a Networking Meeting…or a Social Affair…or a Business Meeting…or literally in an elevator – and you may have anywhere from 20 seconds to two minutes to introduce yourself, explain what you do, state what you are looking for, and request a call to action…can you do it?  Will you be memorable / noticed?  Will you get results?

The Elevator Speech is NOT easy to do!  It takes forethought and lots of practice.  You also need to have more than one version, as different situations (i.e., different audiences /demographics) require different approaches.

Here are just a few resources to get you started – go to Google and do some more research:

There are many resources on-line – poke around…read some articles…watch some YouTube videos…

I don’t necessarily agree with what everybody says about writing and presenting an Elevator Speech, but, in general, there are lots of good tips on how to approach the project.

Things to remember:

  • Share your passion!
  • Use body language, gestures and facial expressions
  • It’s not what you say, it’s HOW you say it
  • It’s NOT a sales pitch – it’s just the opener
  • Keep it simple – don’t use a lot of fancy jargon
  • Use question(s) to get people engaged
  • Practice, practice, practice!!

Do you have an Elevator Speech?  Let’s hear it…  :)

You don’t?  Then get busy – write it and practice it!!  Be prepared for your next opportunity to create a relationship!

Happy Independence Day!!

July 3, 2012

Who doesn’t love watching fireworks?!

…and who doesn’t love watching fireworks at Disneyland??!!!

Enjoy some music and fireworks in this video:

Happy Independence Day, everyone!

…or, if you prefer, Happy 4th of July!

English: Independence Day fireworks, San Diego.


Attention Entrepreneur’s

Here’s an excerpt from the Article added below:

So this week, as the country celebrates its independence, it’s a good time to celebrate the independence of the small business owner, too.

And if you are a small business owner, celebrate your own independence. Give yourself a high-five. Starting and growing your own enterprise is challenging to say the least. But you—as with all entrepreneurs—are an independent thinker and visionary who enjoy building something on your own.

Remember, our country was founded on the spirit of entrepreneurship. Our ancestors who came to America did so with a vision of freedom and a desire to build a better life. Today that spirit continues to thrive in our country. Owning your own business is for many—the American Dream.

See the link below to read the entire article…it’s not very long…

My favorite part?  “…Give yourself a high-five.”   So, go ahead…do it!  You deserve it!!  :)

EBS Executive Business Services Enjoys Wild West Event

June 29, 2012

Yee-haw!!  Gather ’round, y’all!!

(Enjoy slide show at bottom!)

EBS Party Line Dancing

EBS Party Yvonne Lambert

Client Yvonne Lambert (EBS) with Rick & Mike

Yvonne Lambert of EBS (Executive Business Services) treated her guests to a rootin’ tootin’ wild west evening held at the Marriott Laguna Cliffs in Dana Point, CA.  It was yet another beautiful day in sunny Southern California (we are SO spoiled!), over-looking Lantern Bay County Park and the Dana Point Harbor, as we unloaded and set up for this outdoor event on the hotel’s View Lawn.

As always, Jeanne Friedman, Senior Convention Services Director, was invaluable – she graciously arranged for all requests to be accommodated in excellent time, greeted challenges with a smile on her face, and really made everything run smoothly.  Jeanne and the Marriott Staff are always a pleasure to work with.  We appreciate you, Jeanne!

EBS party

EBS party

Bean Bag Toss

Guests were entertained with many activities – mechanical bull rides, horse shoe and bean bag toss games (lots of kids at this event!), caricature artist, photo station complete with western costumes & set producing sepia tone take home gifts, roper giving steer roping lessons, DJ playing Country Music, line dance instructors, casino tables, and of course, costumed ‘outlaws’ to crash the party!

EBS Party

She nailed four bean bag toss “Holes in One” in a row! Wow!!

EBS party

Client Yvonne getting dressed for photo

Marriott’s Catering outdid themselves with grilled steak & vegetables, ribs, chicken, chilli, beans, baked potatoes with all the fixin’s, numerous salads, and a dessert bar that included freshly flambeed Cherries Jubilee!  Wow!

EBS party

Mike & Roper Dave

EBS party

Mike & “Outlaws”

EBS party

Cactus Hat Toss

Robin and Mike were both there for the set-up, with Robin managing the arrival of performers and the flow of the event.

EBS party

Roper Dave struttin’ his stuff

EBS party

Tom Kelly – Caricature Artist

EBS party

Ride’m cowgirl!

Mike returned to assist with packing up…and the biggest ‘learn’ for the evening?  Dealing with the bales of hay – WARNING FOR ALL EVENT PLANNERS OUT THERE:  if your client wants bales of hay as decor for a future event, be very aware of the mess they make!  We spent hours trying to clean up bits of hay strewn all over the hotel’s beautiful lawn and flower beds.  It’s easy to get them delivered, but the mess they make is most likely not appropriate for many locations.  If your client does insist on it, and your event is any place other than a barn or farm, you’ll need to arrange for extra labor and/or cost to manage the clean-up.  Just saying…   :)

The Guests however had a fabulous time (many were dressed in appropriate Western attire), and kids of all ages had numerous activities to experience throughout the evening!

Enjoy the slide show!!

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OC Brides at Newport Harbor Nautical Museum

June 27, 2012

Main Entrance

Nautical Museum Patio

What a lovely evening!

The temperature and the breeze were perfect, the sail boats glided by out on the bay, everyone was in a good mood and we all enjoyed the libations and social community!

Mike and Robin became better acquainted with a few of the OC Brides Board Members, notably Founder Cindy Lieber, Debbie Christensen (The Wedding Guide), and Dave Greenwood (Dijital Engagement).  Dawn Harman (Portraits by Dawn) was busy taking photos to capture the event and its attendees.  Beth DeGiacomo (White Feathers Events) was busy at the Registration Table.

Mike being served

The libations were delightful and appropriate for the outdoor setting (see Caterers listed on Wednesday’s Blog).  Dave Greenwood provided an eclectic and very enjoyable selection of music.  All of the Vendor Tables looked fabulous!  (…again, see listing on Wednesday’s Blog.)

We met a few folks we haven’t seen in a while – Rick Rosen (Rosen & Associates Photography) is someone we used to see regularly at ABC Events – it was great to see him again and get caught up.

Jim “Woody” Woods & Mike

Jim “Woody” Woods is someone Robin went to school with (CSU Long Beach) who is developing his photography career.  Always great to see Woody!

Janis Dinwiddie of Dinwiddie

Janis Dinwiddie of Dinwiddie Events was a gracious Hostess and warmly Welcomed everyone.

A member that Robin met at last month’s event was also there…again with her beautiful Vendor Table – Kristy von Waldburg ( – an Arbonne Rep.  It was great to see Kristy again and chat…share ideas about other women’s networking events, etc.

The Nautical Museum was welcoming and interactive.  If you haven’t had an excuse lately to visit Balboa’s Fun Zone…enjoy the Bay, have lunch…then I encourage you to plan a visit to Balboa Peninsula!  Be sure to bring the kids, as the Museum has a lot of ‘kid friendly’ exhibits and events.

New Member of OC Brides

June 20, 2012

Essence Entertainment Talent Agency is a new Member of OC Brides!

OC Brides caters to both Brides and Wedding Vendors.  They have monthly Networking Events that we look forward to attending!

This evening we will be attending an OC Brides networking event at Newport Harbor Nautical Museum – I’ve never been…have you?

Mike and I will both be attending and we look forward to meeting other vendors and brides!  Be sure to introduce yourself to us if you see one of us walk by!  :)

For more information, visit

Below is information about the event:

OC Brides Bridal Networking Event

June 20

 from 6:30 PM to 9:00 PM (PT)

Our networking events are a fantastic way to meet new business prospects, potential partners, and leverage relationships within your existing network for referrals. The thought of networking can be intimidating, awkward and unpleasant. Yet connecting with other professionals and making a positive impression is not only important for your business, it can be fun and exciting if approached with the right attitude. Join us and see this new unique wedding venue on the bay in the Fun Zone, try some fabulous food, meet your peers, and connect with some brides!

ExplorOcean Newport Harbor Nautical Museum
in the Balboa Village Fun Zone

600 East Bay Ave.
Newport Beach, CA 92661-1347

The Balboa Fun Zone as seen from the water. Ne...

The Balboa Fun Zone as seen from the water. Newport Beach, CA, USA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Looking for a unique location for your next event?

ExplorOcean/Newport Harbor Nautical Museum, located on the historic Balboa waterfront, offers a variety of settings for groups of 10 to 250.

Overlooking the beautiful Newport harbor and just steps to the ocean, ExplorOcean/Newport Harbor Nautical Museum connects visitors to the adventure, inspiration and mystery of the sea. Its galleries and waterfront courtyard provide an atmosphere that will create a unique and memorable occasion.

 Raffle prizes welcome (from OCBrides Members) for Vendors and Brides

If you donate a raffle prize your company is listed in the program as well as announced at the mixer!

Taste some International Creations from a variety of Orange County Caterers including Jason’s Catered Events, Bedazzled Catering and Events, Simply Sweet Apple Treats, and Amazing Cake Creations

 Enjoy some Music and Lighting with DiJital Engagement

Make Memories with Portraits by Dawn

Smell what’s in bloom by Irises Designs and Flower Child Floral Designs

See the beauty of Wonderland Dream Weddings, Elegant Wind Waves, and White Feathers Events

Special deals from Diana & Company Jewelry Designs, Arbonne, Beauty by Genesis, Premier Bridal Shows,  Send Out Cards, Tan n Go, and Best DD Solutions

Pick up your complimentary copy of The Wedding Guide


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