Gorby 80

Gorby 80 was the organisational team behind the 80th birthday celebrations for the former, and the last ever, Soviet premier, Mikhail Gorbachev. The gala, which included a who’s who guest list of famous Russian and Hollywood faces, took place in London’s Royal Albert Hall (RAH) in March 2011.

The Gorby 80 team, based in Moscow, approached Today Translations and put us at the heart of the event proceedings. We were assigned to not only supply the simultaneous interpreters for the evening, one interpreting into Russian and the other into French, but we also needed to supply the RAH with 400 headsets and ensure that all the technical broadcast specifications were in place. Never before had the spotlight shone so brightly on us. There was simply no room for error.

Finding the interpreters was the easy step. Supplying 400 headsets and guaranteeing that that the transmission systems would not fail on the evening was a much tougher duty. Our PMs needed to liaise with a team of technicians to ensure that the Royal Albert Hall had the correct interpretation (Bosch DCN, for those interested), radio transmission systems and receivers in place. We also organised for a team of technicians to be on site to install and then operate the systems throughout the evening. The final step: to manually stick our logo on the 400 headsets.

As well as receiving a very flattering thank you letter from the Gorby 80 team in Moscow, we felt very proud in knowing that the distinguished guests who attended the evening, Gorbachev and a number of Hollywood heavyweights including Kevin Spacey and Arnold Schwarzenegger, all enjoyed the festivities while sporting the Today Translations logo.