An award show becomes music videos

As Producer of the first-ever ‘YouTube Music Awards,’ Robb Wagner stepped up alongside acclaimed director Spike Jonze to embark on a wild experiment. They aimed to seamlessly blend the energy of live broadcasts with the artistic expression of music video filmmaking – a feat many in the industry claimed was impossible.

The Challenge:

“It can’t be done,” said the skeptics. But Robb, known for his innovative spirit and disruptive approach, responded with a resolute “Yes, it can.”

The Vision:

Set in the dynamic backdrop of Manhattan’s Basketball City, the production transformed into a canvas where live performance met cinematic storytelling. The event wasn’t just a show; it was a pioneering experience in Live Cinema™, where music and film were merged in real-time.

The Execution:

Featuring global icons like Lady Gaga, Eminem, M.I.A., and Arcade Fire, the YouTube Music Awards transcended the conventional. Each artist performed in meticulously crafted, one-take music videos, unfolding live before an exhilarated audience. These weren’t just performances but premiere cinematic events streamed live on YouTube.

The Impact:

The results were staggering. The live music videos captivated viewers worldwide, amassing over 48 million views. This wasn’t just a night of entertainment but a cultural milestone, proving that the impossible becomes possible when creativity meets technology.

The Praise:

Chris Milk, Co-Director of the awards, said, “Robb – I’m thankful you were there because you really facilitated our crazy dreams.” This sentiment echoes the industry’s recognition of Robb’s role in redefining live event production.

The Legacy:

The first-ever YouTube Music Awards set a new standard, proving that the fusion of live broadcast and music video filmmaking is not only possible but can be extraordinarily impactful. Robb Wagner once again demonstrated that boundaries are meant to be pushed, and new paradigms await exploration.