Cirque Du AAA

American Advertising Awards


KC Ad Club


2023 Gold Addy winner
AAF District 9 - Silver Award


Creative Lead - Logistics & Show Experience 


Branding, Social, Print, Web Design, Event Planning,


2022 year was a circus, but so is advertising. We jump through client hoops, juggle changes, look into our crystal ball and perform a work-life balancing act. If you’ve ever wanted to run away and join the circus, we have good news for you: The circus arrives at the American Advertising Awards. Strut your stuff and let your work take the spotlight.

Presenting…Cirque Du AAA! The American Advertising Awards, are back and this time bringing you a whole three ring show of entertainment. With a lineup made to dazzle and impress. Many will enter, few will win. But those who do can call themselves a star. 

The 2022 KC American Advertising Awards campaign consisted of branding, website content, social content, print materials such as signage, programs, posters, and event decor.
Skip to the show

The Brief

Who is the KC Ad Club?
Since 1902, the KC Ad Club has played an active role in the advertising, marketing and communications industry in the greater Kansas City area. As a 501(c) 6 trade and professional association, KC Ad Club serves the advertising and marketing industry through educational programming, volunteer opportunities and networking.

What are the American Advertising Awards (AAAs)?
Every year the KC Ad club creates a theme for its annual awards show, the American Advertising Awards, which recognizes and celebrates the creativity of advertising. With over 35,000 entries every year, the odds of winning a National Gold ADDY are even slimmer than winning a Cannes Lion. 
The Show Goals
Most importantly, the show should bring together the Kansas City advertising community with an in person experience and a live stream option. Our members should feel more connected to the broader Kansas City community and become inspired by the best creative work in the Midwest. Welcoming advertising professionals of all ages and pairing those new in their career with veterans the show aims to elevate Kansas City's advertising community and putting a spotlight on the work done in our city. 

Additional goals include increasing the number of entries and attendees, with a focus on getting new companies to enter. Increase creative monetization opportunities and build sponsorship relationships. 

The Pitch
Present the KC Ad Club three to four show ideas for a FOMO worthy hybrid event experience. A theme to carry through communications, signage, branding, show entertainment and look and feel of the venue. Deliver both an interactive experience and creative brand book with design assets for the 2022 American Advertising Awards communications and show experience teams.
"You can't really know where you are going until you know where you have been."

Maya Angelou

The Process

Previous years themes included: Reality interrupted, No BullS#!T, Roaring 20s, and Adpoclaypse just to name a few. Surveys from previous years revealed the advertising community as a whole was tired of hearing how the year sucked and seeing glitches within a show theme. Research included looking into the rebrand of the KC Ad Club which was previously know as AAF KC. Research also included local and national advertising award show experiences and themes. 
IamJoeO Awards Concepting

The Process

Concepting & Pitch
After researching other award shows and previous years themes came concepting new ideas. With a timeline of one week to come up with three to four show theme ideas, concepts ranged from traditional and sophisticated to playful. Themes also ranged from high to low production. Each concept included an overall theme description, inspiration, ad lob and typography direction. The attendees in the pitch meeting included KC Ad Club board members, national AAF board members and committee team members. The pitch ended with a vote on the spot to pick the theme. 
Iamjoeo Cirque Du AAA concept pitch Circus

The Show

Cirque Du AAA
It started with a logo, typography, color palette, and image library.  The show was hosted at The Abbott and included a virtual live stream option. The Cirque Du AAA theme was incorporated in the website content, social content, print materials such as signage, event entertainment, event decor and much more. Each category of the show had a main "advertising circus" character to introduce the award winning work. The circus characters were also incorporated through out the KC Ad Club social posts and the night of the event. 

Show copywriting by Gabriel Roman 
Photography by Kate Torline Photography
Character animations by Pilgrim Animation
Show AV by PlatinumXP
Cirque Du AAA WebsiteCirque Du AAA Social
Cirque Du AAA stageCirque Du AAA The Abbott CenterCirque Du AAA CircusCirque Du AAA showCirque Du AAA Gallery Large
Cirque Du AAA centerpieceCirque Du AAA window clingCirque Du AAA cotton candy
Cirque Du AAA The AbbottCirque Du AAA Emcee Cirque Du AAA GalleryCirque Du AAA Circus Performers

The Results

Survey Results
The show had more entries and attendees than the previous year. 80% of attendees rated the show as great or excellent. With 78% rating the Cirque Du AAA theme 4 out of 5 stars. 77% had 4/5 for overall show program. 77% plan to attend next years advertising awards. When surveyed the top 5 most liked aspects of the show were: theme & Decorations, new venue and atmosphere, seeing the award winning work, pace of show, and entertainment/AV.

In 2023 the show theme was awarded an Addy for Advertising Industry Self-Promotion. 


Branding • Web Design • Logo Design


Branding • Package Design

The Strother Room


Tenuta San Pietro

Branding •  Logo Design
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