Friday, January 4, 2013

Press release: 2013 Thea Awards announced by Themed Entertainment Association; Awards Gala scheduled for April 6 at Disneyland Hotel

Twelve beacons of excellence in the design of compelling places and experiences
"The annual Thea Awards, presented by the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA), recognize and honor excellence and breakthrough innovation within our industry, wherever it is to be found,” says TEA president Christine Kerr of BaAM Productions. “From Harry Potter to Cars Land, from Transformers to Canadian sports, from the brief run of a world expo to the sustained success of a classic theme park, this year's Thea Awards are helping define the next generation of Experience Design while staying firmly rooted in the core tradition of storytelling."

The awards will be formally presented on 6 April 2013 at the 19th Annual Thea Awards Gala, a ticketed, black-tie dinner affair, open to the public, at the Disneyland Resort, Anaheim USA. Title sponsor of the 19th Thea Awards Gala is AECOM. The Gala producer is Patrick Roberge Productions. TEA events producer is Kathy Oliver. Tickets on sale now at the TEA Box Office.

The Thea Awards Nominating Committee recommended the current slate of 12 Thea recipients, with final approval by the TEA International Board of Directors. Scroll down to see the full list of recipients

Christine Kerr
"A Thea Award is recognized as one of the industry's greatest honors," says Kerr. "This year, there are visible trends toward strong cultural components, IP licensing and transmedia. There are ever more astounding and seamless blends of technology, media, theater and interactivity. And there is recognition of the people and contributions that laid the foundations of this next evolution of experience. We encourage the media, the industry and the public to learn more about the 12 honorees, and to make plans to join us at the Thea Awards Gala on 6 April in Anaheim."

Kerr adds, “Created by TEA in 1994, the influential and prestigious Thea Awards have dramatically expanded awareness and appreciation of our industry, its place in the entertainment universe, its most resounding accomplishments and its many talented people. Behind each project is a multidisciplinary creative team that strove to realize a vision for the project owner. We document and celebrate that process, crediting those who make it happen through their dedicated work and investment."

Media Contacts
Judith Rubin Public Relations,
Gene Jeffers, TEA executive director,
Kathy Oliver, TEA events producer, 

The Buzz Price Award – Recognizing a Lifetime of Distinguished Achievements
Frank Stanek

Thea Classic
Europa-Park Theme Park and Resort, Rust, Germany

Big-O Experience
Awards for Outstanding Achievement
  • Radiator Springs Racers, Disney California Adventure Park – Anaheim, USA
  • Transformers: The Ride - 3D, Universal Studios Hollywood
  • Cars Land, Disney California Adventure Park – Anaheim, USA
  • Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame – Calgary, Canada
  • Aquanura at Efteling - Netherlands
  • Big-O Show, Yeosu 2012 International Expo - South Korea
  • Tait Pixel Tablets – London, England
  • Warner Bros. Studio Tour - The Making of Harry Potter - London, England
  • Aulani, A Disney Resort & Spa - Ko Olina, Oahu, Hawaii USA
  • Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge, Disney California Adventure Park – Anaheim, USA
Click here for detailed descriptions of awards recipients and more photos.

Thea Awards Nominating Committee
John Robinett (Economics at AECOM), Chair

Phil Hettema (The Hettema Group), Vice-Chair

Steve Thorburn (Thorburn Associates), Board Liaison

Karen McGee (BRC Imagination Arts), Coordinator

Buzz Price Lifetime Achievement Recipients

Marty Sklar (Marty Sklar Creative Inc.)

Monty Lunde (Technifex)

Bob Gurr (GurrDesign)

Tony Baxter (Walt Disney Imagineering)

Barry Upson (Barry Upson Company)

Yves Pépin

Bob Rogers (BRC Imagination Arts)

Bob Ward (Strategic Insights & Creative Imagination)

Kim Irvine (Walt Disney Imagineering)

Mark Fuller (WET)

Jon Jerde (The Jerde Partnership)

Don Iwerks

Jack Rouse (Jack Rouse Associates)

Committee Members

Jeremy Railton (Entertainment Design Corp.)

Steve McIntyre (Anitech Systems)

Patricia MacKay (Ones and Zeros)

Patti Drum (Lexington)

Michel den Dulk (Europa-Park)

Craig Hanna (Thinkwell Group)

Brad Merriman (Management Resources)

About TEA
The TEA (Themed Entertainment Association) is an international nonprofit alliance founded in 1991 and based in Burbank, Calif. Some 850 TEA members represent roughly 7,500 creative specialists, from architects to designers, technical specialists to master planners, scenic fabricators to artists, and builders to feasibility analysts working in 30 US states and 40 different countries. TEA presents the annual Thea Awards and the TEA Summit and hosts the annual SATE Conference (Storytelling, Architecture, Technology, Experience). TEA also produces a variety of print and electronic publications, including the TEA/AECOM Theme Index, TEA Project Development Guidelines, TEA Annual & Directory and Thea Awards Program magazine.

Visit TEA on Facebook and LinkedIn.

About the Thea Awards
Like the TEA, the Thea Awards, sponsored by Economics at AECOM, were created to bring recognition to achievement, talent and personal excellence within the themed entertainment industry. From a modest beginning in 1994, the Thea Awards have become internationally recognized as a symbol of excellence. The public is welcome to attend the black-tie 19th Annual Thea Awards Gala, which will be held April 6, 2013 at the Disneyland Hotel, Disneyland Resort, Anaheim Calif. USA. Tickets may be ordered online at The name of the award is a play on three words: the first is "Thea," the Greek goddess from whom all light emanates. Thea was the mother of Helios (the sun), Eos (the dawn), and Selene (the moon). The second key word is "Theater," a word derived from the goddess Thea. The third word, of course, is TEA, the name of our association.

About Economics at AECOM (Thea Awards Gala sponsor)
Economics at AECOM (formerly ERA/Economics Research Associates) is an international consulting firm focused on economic analysis for the entertainment and leisure industry, real estate development, public-policy analysis, tourism, and economic development. Since its founding in 1958, Economics at AECOM has completed over 15,000 assignments yielding unmatched experience in land use economics. In the process, the firm has made important contributions to some of the world's most innovative and successful development projects. Their projects span the globe and range from repositioning single land uses to New Towns planned over 30 years. In broad terms, Economics at AECOM assists private developers and public agencies in assessing the future economics and outcomes of real estate projects and economic development plans. Economics at AECOM offers a diverse array of economic analysis and tools to answer complex problems. Website:

About Patrick Roberge Productions (Thea Awards Gala producer)
PRP is an award winning consulting and full turnkey production company that produces creative shows and events. Our experienced team of entertainment professionals specializes in event planning and show production. From vision to reality, we work with you to achieve your goal and make your event memorable. Through our four divisions (Creative Sports, Creative Events, Corporate Productions, Creative Entertainment)
we specialize in achieving objectives through innovative and creative entertainment. Visit