Attending the NBCUniversal Cable Entertainment Upfront presentation

To be honest, I don’t even know how to articulate my experience at the NBCU Cable upfront presentation this past Thursday. Saying something like “it was incredibly awesome” really doesn’t do it any justice. It was fun and entertaining and something I hope to attend for many years to come.

What you see before you enter the sea of seats.
What you see before you enter the sea of seats.

So, why was I there? I cover some USA Network shows/news for Hypable and for about a year, I’ve been in contact with a woman from the PR firm that handles some USA shows (Suits, Sirens). Upfronts are primarily a time for television networks to announce their new shows for the upcoming year, and for advertisers to figure out how much ad space to buy for specific networks – it’s a very big deal in the advertising world. But, it’s also a big media and press event – outlets such as Variety, Entertainment Weekly, and Vulture send their reporters to cover nearly every event during the week – it can get very exhausting.

Anyways – I was invited to attend NBCU Cable’s presentation because of USA Network, but they also own stations such as Bravo, Oxygen, E!, SyFy. I took the train up to New York City Thursday morning, came home that night, but boy was it a fun seven hours in the city (aside from losing one of my favorite earrings.)

Joel McHale closed out the presentation with some great laughs.
Joel McHale closed out the presentation with some great laughs.

The presentation itself was spectacular – Linda Yaccarino said a lot of stuff about ‘aggregating content’ and sounded very smart and looked very gorgeous. She, in conjunction with Bonnie Hammer, is honestly one of the most influential women in the entertainment industry at the moment. Both are truly influential women whom I aspire to be like one day. I sat 11 rows from the stage and the first seven or so were reserved for the celebrities by the likes of the cast of Suits, Royal Pains, Covert Affairs, and Graceland and talent like Giuliana Rancic, Joan Rivers, the Kardashians, the cast of Million Dollar Listing NY and Chrisley Knows Best. 

Clockwise from top left: Patrick J. Adams, Todd Chrisley, Linda Yaccarino and Andy Cohen.
Clockwise from top left: Patrick J. Adams, Todd Chrisley, Linda Yaccarino and Andy Cohen.

But then, once the presentation had concluded, we made our way to the after party and oh my gosh it was so much fun. I met a friend from Hypable, and managed to snap a few pictures with celebs and Linda Yaccarino herself. Bonus: she has a Penn State phone case.

The entire experience – from waiting in line for 30 minutes to be admitted into the Javits convention center, surrounded by other writers, reporters and journalists, to walking past TV personalities I watch daily (overheard: Padma Lakshmi of Top Chef asking a waiter what was in the dish she was holding. It was just really funny to me for some reason – like she was about to judge or critique the meal (not that she would here)) – was exhilarating.

Finally met John! Hypable buddies for life!
Finally met John! Hypable buddies for life!

It was tantalizingly fun – how do I go back to my ordinary life after this? I guess I just continue to work hard and hope to go back next year in a larger capacity. Or who knows – maybe I’ll be at an ad agency full-time and my job will be on the other side of the coin compared to this year.

Meanwhile: back to the real world: I actually did finally find an internship for this summer! I will be a social media intern with the Weitzman Agency in Annapolis! I am so excited to be working with this team and I think it will be a great experience.

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