For more on Tom Whitman Presents go to
www.tomwhitmanpresents.com   And when in
the Los Angeles area check out
Smack Thursdays @ O-Bar, and Cherry Pop
Saturdays @ Ultra Suede, both events held
weekly in West Hollywood.











CLICK HERE for more on JC Alvarez




Copyright ©  AMBIENTE MAGAZINE.   Do not reproduce without citing these sources.
there and had some hand in making it
all happen.  I’ll let you imagine exactly
where his hands may have been.

Moving into the world of club
promoter or nightlife impresario,
seemed a natural fit, but it wasn't
something that Whitman sought out --
it kinda just happened!  While
promoting a short film he had worked
on in LA during a film festival, the
location owners were so impressed
with the crowd that Whitman had
attracted to the location, they
offered him a night to promote at the
venue, but he turned them down --
that wasn't what he was about at the
time.  They revisited the promotional
opportunity nearly a year later, and
while on hiatus from a then current
production, he thought it might be fun
to do...”for like a minute.”  

The event became a Thursday night
staple, drawing huge crowds and party revelers looking to be seen at the scene and
chased by the paparazzi lens!

That’s when Whitman had to make a decision.  “So after a year (and the success) of my
first event, I had to choose whether or not I would pursue this as a career
But although one would assume that in a plunging market where everyone is watching
every penny and where those cents are going, especially with all the struggling financial
business and ponzi schemes, nightlife isn’t exactly high on the list of necessities.  
Whitman, of course, doesn’t exactly see it that way as the public needs it’s distractions.  
“People generally go out a lot more in New York, but there’s great nightlife right now in
LA; there’s great venues...and it’s warm (almost) all year long.”

Even his weekly events need his attention to detail: “I have dancers every week, and
routines, and special appearances,” which have included the likes of aspiring gay-icons
and dance divas Katy Perry and Lady GaGa, the latter of which has noted that Whitman
helped put her on the radar with her gay audience.  After all Tom does recognize talent
when he sees it -- and if it’s going to set the tone or accent one of his events, then all
the better!  “Part of it is...I take my job really seriously.  It’s not about me wanting to be
popular.  I take great pride in putting on my events.  I don’t just take a venue and put in a
DJ...we audition dancers, and come up with routines for them throughout the night...if I
wouldn't have a good time there, I wouldn't expect anyone else to.”

He’s also quick to acknowledge that the party wouldn't go on without the support of his
talented team and his dedicated audience.  “I have a great crowd of people around me...
there’s always a great core of people attending who are there to have a good time.  I try
to make it really fun...friendly...a good-looking crowd that isn't there to get high.  It’s
meant to be social.”

And as adorably attractive as Tom Whitman is, perhaps his most appealing feature is
how down-to-earth the man behind the magic really is.  Tom isn’t big on the whole
velvet rope concept -- he doesn't believe exclusivity should be the proponent to any
social event or club gathering.  “I will never hold a line, just to make it look like there’s a
crowd outside when there’s no one inside the club.  That just bugs me.  You want to
always support your VIPs, but I want everyone to come out!”

Not everything that Tom Whitman Presents is a big blockbuster production, like
www.ambiente.us  MARCH | MARZO 2009

Meet the Life of the Party | Profiling Tom Whitman
by JC Alvarez


“The scene” isn’t what it used to be, and in this struggling economy, nightlife culture is
at best a luxury spent on celebrity and/or the privileged...but life is the greatest party,
and Tom Whitman prefers to live it like every day is a red carpet event!  The LA based
promoter/producer has solidified his celebrity status, by manufacturing the must see,
must be at events that make everyone wish they were on the list!

Born in Hawaii, with a dad who served in the Air Force, Tom Whitman found himself
“growing up” all over until finally settling in California and attending UCLA, before finally
making his home between both New York City and Los Angeles.  It seemed that Mr.
Whitman was destined to have a life full of jet-setting and excitement!  Making his
home between two of the United States most metropolitan cities, there was no doubt
that Tom would some how immerse himself in the entertainment industry.  He found
himself at MTV Networks and went on to produce some of the award shows and events
that have basically shaped the pop-culture phenomenon, and synched the most earth-
shaking moments of the last 25 years!  Remember the first time Britney Spears
performed on the VMAs, or the time she wrangled the snake, or when she planted a
big, wet one on her icon, Madonna?  Tom Whitman was probably
.
.
.
.
.
Wonderland which is of course meant to be a bigger than life extravaganza!  Tom is
also known for putting on smaller fare that attracts the cocktail crowd and opens up into
dinner events like Smack Thursdays at O-Bar in West Hollywood.  He was instrumental
in devising the most popular Saturday night dance party featuring the most sought-after
circuit DJs spinning at Cherry Pop at Ultra Suede (also in West Hollywood), but Tom
Whitman is also a philanthropist and invested in what he calls The Gang of 100.

The purpose of The Gang of 100 is to create fundraising opportunities, big and small,
throughout the course of the year that raise much needed funds to local charities.  
Whitman is creatively using his contacts and social network to inspire his colleagues to
keep connected to their community, by giving back and enjoying themselves while they’
re at it.  The Gang of 100 has repeated raised a record number of funds during the AIDS
Walk LA annual event.  Whitman decidedly made a concerted effort to be involved as a
citizen in his community, not just someone to be popularized by some “red carpet”
notoriety.  If he was going to be a recognizable member of his community, he was going
to be as effective as possible.  Whitman sits on the board of the APLA -- AIDS Project
Los Angeles.

So it seems like the party still goes on for Tom Whitman, or you can look at it as it’s just
beginning.  On the outside it may appear that the man is inspired by the glitz and
glamour of the club life, but like some super-hero living a dual identity, that man at the
velvet rope with the designer duds on looking all too fierce is really a Superman by day
making sure that the party reaches everybody in the community and that everyone will
be guaranteed to have a good time.

If Tom Whitman has his way...and I get the impression that once he has his sights on
the goal, he gets what he wants...the party will be going on for a very long time.  

I just hope that as long as Whitman is producing the event, I’m always going to be on
the list!
and open up an office...or go back to TV.  But I had pretty much done everything that I
wanted to do with TV (and MTV) by that point...so it was kind of one of those
opportunities where you kinda have to take it, or you don’t.  I said, let’s take this
opportunity and see what happens with it.  That was 8 years ago.”

Whitman didn't enter this phase of his career with the intention of being or becoming a
party boy.  Don’t get him wrong, he very much enjoyed a good party, but he is no “party
planner”.  He entered it from the perspective of his production background and from the
experience of putting on the greatest shows on earth!  “I was used to doing concerts...
and so this was taking that experience and adding on my marketing skills, and bringing
into the community.”

By banking on his profound ability to entertain, from an albeit dimensionally-limited
perspective -- remember, Whitman was used to staging events that would fit onto your
42” screen -- now he had to bring the party out and into the 3D world, and often onto
spaces as vast as the Paramount Studio backlot!  Suddenly he wasn't creating a
special effect or a TiVO moment for a national broadcast, he was manufacturing an
atmosphere, a journey into sight and sound -- a spectacle for all the senses!  

There in was the challenge!  “That’s the fun part!  My Pride event, Wonderland, which is
on the backlot of Paramount is the event where I get to use most of that muscle.”  That
muscle he’s referring to could well be his impressive biceps curl, but Whitman is
referring to his creativity and especially his production know-how, that gives him the
skills to make his events so unique.  “There’s people in the air, there’s performers
singing, there’s fireworks...that’s when I get to go back and use all those skills that I've
built up.”
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