In 2008 Sparkle* was commissioned by Sydney Theatre Company to create the animation for the award winning stage show “Minutes of a Separation”. A 12 man team from Sparkle* UK travelled to Australia to work on the production for 3 weeks. The show starred Cate Blanchett & Joseph Fiennes and played for one night only in Geneva, Switzerland, for the IWC Schaffhausen Gala.
“The Crossing” took guests on an unforgettable trip back in time to the early days of IWC in Schaffhausen. For it is now almost a century-and-a-half since a young American engineer and watchmaker by the name of Florentine Ariosto Jones dreamt of fusing traditional Swiss watch making with American industrial expertise. In spring 1868, he set off on a journey that ended in Schaffhausen and made that dream come true. The stylish new timepieces presented by IWC in Geneva are very much a part of this story. For this particular anniversary, IWC has taken six milestone models from its long history and brought them back up to date in the new Vintage collection. Host and IWC CEO Georges Kern and presenter Tanja Bülter opened the curtain on the evening’s glittering events with a fascinating film about the new historic models from IWC.
Before walking the red carpet and being admitted to the Geneva Arena, guests had to present an invitation in the form of F.A. Jones’ original passport. When they entered, the sight that confronted them was little short of breathtaking. An enormous harbour scene in the style of 1868, complete with wagons, coaches and crates, as well as a swarm of sailors in contemporary dress had been set up: just the kind of thing Jones may have experienced when he boarded ship in Boston. The big difference here, however, was the fact that the passengers who embarked on the SV Scafusia were not subjected to weeks of being tossed to and fro by the Atlantic waves but treated to outstanding cuisine and a fabulous state-of-the-art multimedia show.
The highlight of the evening was a 15-minute multimedia theatre production, “Minutes of Separation”, produced exclusively for the event by the Sydney Theatre Company. Cate Blanchett’s contribution to the piece, which had been filmed in advance, was projected onto a screen at the centre of the spectacular live performance. The production centres on the relationship between IWC founders, F.A. Jones (played by Joseph Fiennes) and his pregnant wife (played by Cate Blanchett). The story revolves around the emotional rollercoaster that was the dangerous journey, over land and sea to an uncertain future, as well as the dramatic arrival in Schaffhausen. In the stirring finale, the award-winning Australian physical theatre group “Legs on the Wall” put on one of the sensuous aerial acrobatic performances for which they are renowned.
The magnificent gala evening was rounded off fittingly by the First Lady of Canadian rock ‘n’ roll and seven-time Grammy Award-winner Alanis Morissette, who put on a fabulous performance for IWC’s guests with an exclusive preview of some of the songs from her latest album.