At 8:30 pm on June 2nd, the Opening Night Party for the Greenwich International Film Festival in Greenwich, Connecticut was officially kicking off. The night was to celebrate and recognize films that combine visual artistry in their impactful showcase of social issues.
The Red Carpet arrivals included the filmmakers, their families and the two special guests of the night, Sophia Bush and Flo Rida.
Sophia Bush is an actress, activist, storyteller and head of the Social Impact Jury. She graced the carpet with a humble presence and an adoring smile, just in time to present the award for Best Social Impact Film to City of Ghosts. The director of the film was Matthew Heineman and he was presented with a trophy and a check of $10,000. In addition, there were other awards and prizes that ranged from $1,000 to $5,000.
Right after Bush’s announcement, the DJ started warming up the audience for a concert performance by Flo Rida. People of all ages started getting closer to the stage and the DJ was hyping up the crowd screaming into the microphone “When I say Flo you say Rida” and would follow up with “Flo” and the audience would unanimously scream “Rida”. The hyping up went on for a couple of minutes and then finally around 9:45 pm, Flo Rida took the stage.
He was accompanied by a group of back up dancers and was insanely energetic. He performed all of his greatest hits and the crowd knew every single word, surprisingly even the older crowd was singing along. Despite everyone having their phones out, there was still so much engagement between him and the crowd. He would take the phones out of the hands of people in the first row and snapchat himself or take a selfie. The crowd was living for it. Everyone was sweating, everyone was singing and truly having a good time.
The energy was at a high all throughout Flo Rida’s set. Finally, when it was all coming to an end, he gave the crowd all the love they were giving him back and said “when I say I love, you say Connecticut” and that unanimous scream of “Connecticut” undoubtedly echoed throughout the hall.
Flo Rida left the stage and people were left to a DJ set, an open bar, some photo booth fun, and an array of finger food for the rest of the night. It was a night that balanced fun and important artistic recognition.