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Event Birdie Professional Bernadette Panton
Meet Bernadette Panton. Currently the Hosted Buyer Manager for AIME at Talk2 Media & Events, Bernadette’s career in events has taken her from Barcelona, to France, the UK and back to Melbourne. She always has a smile on her face and loves creating a community with AIME. Bernadette is on a mission to inspire, be different and set a trend. So join us as we get to know another fabulous event pro, Benadette Panton…
Give us a snap shot of your career to date.
Circa 2007 was when I started this amazing journey in the Events Industry working on the largest MICE Event of the time EIBTM in Barcelona for Reed Exhibitions. Since then I have worked on the International Luxury Travel Market in Cannes France, been on tour with a variety of musicians, managed the largest Dance and Performing Arts Event in the UK. Since coming back home to Melbourne after 5 years in the UK, I have gained valuable experience whilst working as the Sales Manager for Melbourne and Olympic Parks & prior to joining Talk 2 Media and Events, worked at the Victoria Racing Club for almost 3 years. In between all of that, I worked on some amazing activations including an Art Car activation for BMW and a new energy drink launch for Tonino Lamborghini.
The most memorable event you have worked on and why?
Too many to mention however a couple that stands out were the International Luxury Travel Market in the South of France. Experiencing Cannes and seeing how all of the events suppliers, especially the hotels on the La Croisette collaborated to ensure that ILTM was an incredible success was refreshing to see and be part of. Melbourne Cup 2015, witnessing Prince of Penzance win the Cup with Michelle Payne making history. And I can’t forget AIME 2019. The amount of work that the whole team put into creating a new experience and journey for the industry and seeing it come to life was rewarding and an honour to be part of.
What did you ‘learn the hard way’ when planning an event?
I remember working on a music tour for quite a famous 90’s RnB band. The promoter didn’t have anything organized so I had to quickly think on my feet to solve the problems that arose. The 14-piece band were sitting in their hotel lobby with no rooms paid for and with the risk of losing their accommodation completely I had to problem solve on the spot to ensure that they had a place to sleep. I learned to always go back and check that everything that what you had planned and set out to do is done before the day of the event. I also learnt that the details are so important and to never lose sight of them.
What are three personality traits that are required to succeed in the events industry?
If you could share one piece of advice to those starting out in the industry what would it be?
To never stop learning and to always ask questions. There is no such thing as a silly question as knowledge is power. Oh and I must not forget to do everything with a smile on your face!
What song always gets you on the dance floor?
Murder She Wrote by Chaka Demus & Pliers
If you could plan an event anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
Does planning an event on the moon count? From what I know no one has done that before and I would love to be the first.
What did you want to be when you “grew up”?
A famous singer
What can you not live without in your life?
How would your friends describe your job?
My friends would describe my job as being hectic and incredibly busy especially coming up to event day.
How do you unwind after a big event?
I love going for a drive by the coast and spending a weekend by the beach to unwind and recharge after a big event.
Words to live by?
Don’t worry be happy!
When entertaining at home what do you cook?
Love cooking Jamaican food as it’s something different that a lot of my friends have yet to taste.
Best event you’ve been to as a guest?
Soul Weekender in the UK. The vibe and atmosphere was electric.
What do you prefer, cocktail party or sit-down dinner?
What’s your drink of choice at an event?
Rum and coke
Who would you love to invite to dinner (past or present)?
I would love to have dinner with my Dad. He would always make me laugh at the dinner table and nothing was ever taken seriously.
Best event styling tip?
Style to inspire, be different and set a trend.
Why do you love your job?
I love that every day is different and that I get to meet people from all over the world. Plus I love the fact that I get to create a community and bring them across to our amazing city Melbourne.
If you weren’t working in events what would you do?
I would want to be travelling the world and somehow find a way to get paid for it.