Media Bitch's Diary 05 November

'Exquisite individuals' shine at the Media Week Awards, Simon Kelner curls up with new squeeze Penelope Cruz and Turner's clairvoyant fails to predict Carat's karaoke crew crashing in the office

30 years of IPA Effectiveness: the rise and fall

Monday night was a typically quiet evening for media-land - just a champagne reception, three-course dinner and dancing until 1.30am to celebrate the thirtieth anniversary of the IPA Effectiveness Awards at the Park Lane Hilton.

Representing the media contingent were MEC’s Steve Hatch, M4C’s Alex Altman and Rob Atkinson from Clear Channel, while MCBD’s Andy Nairn was called up to the stage so many times host Clive Anderson (below) made a lewd joke about the number of times the Scotsman’s kilt was "going up and down".

Later, Media Week also learned of a Britain’s Got Talent contestant in the making: Shea Brennan, the teenage son of Thinkbox’s head of research David Brennan, who won a breakdancing competition at last year’s Bestival.

With a dad who used to manage punk rock bands and a musician mother, it is no surprise performing is in Brennan Jnr’s blood - TV research can be Plan B.

'Exquisite individuals' shine at Media Week Awards

However, the biggest awards ceremony in last week’s diary was, of course, the Media Week Awards at Grosvenor House, where 1,300 agency and media owner guests let their hair down as only media-land knows how.

In fact, the event went with so much of a bang that many young - and not so young - media types simply didn’t bother going to bed at all, moving on to afterparties at The Metropolitan Bar, Whisky Mist and the Elysee restaurant on Percy Street, where Zenith held court until the small hours to toast their Agency of the Year success.

Earlier in the evening - before the guests got too ‘dishevelled’ - the party also gave the industry’s beautiful people a chance to shine, with Stylist magazine hosting a hunt for media’s best-dressed.

Hundreds of "exquisite individuals" had their photos snapped on the red carpet, but the overall winner was Caroline Tredget from the Independent, beating runners-up Kristina Eriksson from the FT and Matt Wilson from TalkSport (pictured below, right) with TalkSport’s Moz Dee. Click here to see Stylist’s edit of the 50 most glamorous Media Week Awards guests - next year, it could be you.

Simon Kelner 'curls up' with cushiony Penelope Cruz

Meanwhile, The Groucho was the meeting place of choice for national newspaper chiefs on Wednesday, with the Independent’s editor Simon Kelner spending the evening with Mirror editor Richard Wallace and restaurateur Mark Hix.

Kelner didn’t leave the Groucho until 1.30am - after bumping into a few more media faces "as you do" - so when Media Week caught up with him the next day, he was less than enthused about giving a speech to 60 of "London’s most powerful Jews" at a dinner at Evgeny Lebedev’s restaurant Saki No Hana that evening.

Media Week left Kelner preparing to "curl up with Penelope Cruz" to prepare for the event - no, not in that way, he has a Penelope Cruz cushion on his office sofa - and Channel 4 chief David Abraham, Kamarama head Nicola Mendelsohn and Lord Levy were no doubt later captivated by his amusing anecdotes.

One person who WASN'T on the guest list, however, was Sunday Times writer AA Gill, who wrote an unflattering review of Evgeny Lebedev’s Japanese eaterie only last weekend…

Look out for Media Week’s interview with Simon Kelner about the launch of the Independent’s i next week.

Carat's karaoke crew crash in the office

Another lively night out was Turner Media’s Halloween party at Vinopolis, where Turner and their media agency guests dressed up as teen wolves, zombies and, er, Alan Partridge, who may or may not have been at the right party.

The Carat gang were "on form that night", so the group (below) moved on to karaoke bar Belushas down the road, where Ash Gilbert sang ‘I Just Died in Your Arms Tonight’ and Chris Pyatt and Dale Bilson duetted ‘Don’t Look Back in Anger’.

None of these antics were predicted by Turner’s tarot reader - who also failed to spot that "quite a few" of the Carat guys would end up crashing in their office overnight - although she did, apparently, foresee "many successful media campaigns with Turner Media Innovations". Spooky!

Could the Maxus pool night run even more swimmingly?

Honour was upheld on both sides when Maxus took on Haymarket’s journalists at a pool tournament at Bar 19:20 in Clerkenwell, as the contest was jointly won by Maxus’ global marketing director Helena Snowdon (who stuck to iced tea) and Haymarket’s group news editor Arif Durrani (who didn’t).

The competition is now set to become an annual event, although to help Maxus chief executive Lindsay Weedon make it past the first round, perhaps the definition of a ‘pool’ party should be taken more literally.

Why? Because Weedon almost became a professional swimmer in her teens, and did 50 lengths in the hotel pool each day when she and colleague Nick Vale, global head of planning, got stranded in LA by the ash cloud after the agency’s global conference in April. Just a suggestion…

Media millionaire steps in to save Nottingham

And finally: This week’s TV star is Mark Pearson, founder of Marcou Media and a "leading member of the affiliate marketing sector", who will appear as the guest on this weekend’s broadcast of Channel 4’s Secret Millionaire.

Tune in at 9pm this Sunday to see Mark (below) travel up to Nottingham and donate "a considerable amount of his own personal fortune" to good causes in the city. Rumours that he will step in to bail-out the city’s struggling local papers are - unfortunately for Nottingham Post Media Group - wide of the mark.

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