Salvation Army Selects Corporate Magic to Produce 150th Anniversary International Congress
LONDON (April 22, 2014) – When members, representatives and friends of The Salvation Army from 126 countries gather in London next summer to celebrate the 150th anniversary of The Salvation Army, they’ll be treated to a spectacular production befitting one of the world’s most revered charitable organizations.
And every detail, hand-in-hand with the six-person Salvation Army Congress team, will be overseen by the Dallas-based messaging architects at Corporate Magic.
Corporate Magic was selected from an initial pool of leading international firms bidding on the prestigious event. The list was narrowed down to five semi-finalists that were invited to make presentations in London to the organization’s Congress Executive Committee and Congress Planning & Advisory Committee.
“We are honored, delighted and humbled to be selected by the Army to produce this extraordinary event,” said Jim Kirk, President and Chief Creative Officer of Corporate Magic. “We have assembled an outstanding team of craftsmen dedicated to delivering a series of incredible productions that will resonate for the Army and its Salvationists for years to come.”
While most details of the event remain under wraps, the Congress’ theme will be “BOUNDLESS: The Whole World Redeeming.” The theme comes from the pen of General William Booth, the founder of The Salvation Army, who wrote the words to what has become known as “The Founder’s Song” for the Christian charity: O boundless salvation, deep ocean of love; O fullness of mercy, Christ brought from above. The whole world redeeming, so rich and so free; Now flowing for all men, come roll over me.
The five-day event, which will be held July 1-5, 2015 at London’s O2 Arena, coincides with the 150th anniversary of The Salvation Army’s founding in London. More than 16,000 Salvationists and officers, and friends of The Army are expected to attend from the 126 nations served by the Army. Millions more will view the proceedings via the Internet, as the general sessions will be streamed live and archived for anyone to watch over the following weeks and months.
The 2015 International Congress will commemorate The Salvation Army’s past 150 years, celebrate what the organization is doing today, and communicate how the Army is prepared to innovate for the future.
“Corporate Magic has produced some amazing concepts showing their vision for Boundless 2015, and with their skills, knowledge, experience and creativity, it is set to be a phenomenal anniversary celebration not to be missed,” said Lt. Col. Edward “Eddie” Hobgood, 2015 Congress Coordinator at the International Headquarters of The Salvation Army. “We have worked with Corporate Magic extensively for many years and have always been impressed by their talent, ingenuity and results. We have the utmost confidence in their ability to produce a truly historic event for us.”
Since 2000, Corporate Magic has produced several territorial congresses, commissionings and national conferences for the Army, as well as more than a dozen kickoffs of the Red Kettle Campaign during the annual Dallas Cowboys Thanksgiving Day halftime shows. While the company has previously produced other events in the United Kingdom for clients such as Land Rover and IBM, this is the first time it has worked internationally with The Salvation Army.
Corporate Magic has assembled a team of professionals with experience in countless international events, ranging from the Olympic Games to the Opening Ceremony of the Millennium Dome (now O2 Arena). Joint Chief Operating Officers for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Opening and Closing Ceremonies Chris Laue and Sara Donaldson have been tapped as executive producer and producer, respectively, of Boundless 2015.
“We have produced some amazing events over the years, including Coca-Cola’s Centennial Celebration, but Boundless 2015 promises to be our most ever,” said Kirk. “We can’t wait to watch as our shared vision unfolds.”
The extravaganza will feature seven spectacular General Sessions, a grand march down The Mall and performances from 40 international groups – exhibiting a wide range of artistry from hula to Chinese lion dancing to the Angola National Band. An original Larsson and Larsson commercial-caliber musical has been commissioned for the event and an exposition hall will showcase an interactive heritage display along with the latest technologies the Army is bringing to its commands.
“We know this is more than just celebration for celebration’s sake,” said Stephen Dahlem, Corporate Magic’s Senior Creative Director. “We know people remember how they felt about an experience long after they forget what you told them about that experience, and we want people to leave moved and inspired.”