Name: Jonathan “JAM” Madrigal
Position: Event Production Manager – MuckFest/Muck FOR GOOD
Start Year: Officially, I think it would be 2011 but I took a break from 2014 to 2015, then came back in 2016.
How did your life path bring you to Event 360?
I’ve been doing events since I was in high school; we produced an annual community film festival where we showcased the short films we made throughout the school year. After high school I moved to Hawaii to start working for an audio-visual company and from there my event career really took off. I was freelancing with anybody I could, learning as much as I could. I was putting up stages, tents, lighting, video projection, sound systems, decor… you name it, I was doing it. Fast forward several years; I moved back to California and was working for a sound guy that knew Mike Murphy (Executive Vice President and co-founder of Event 360). Murph had asked him if he knew anyone that was a good A2 for a traveling event series. He gave him my number and seven interviews later I was hired on to join the 3-Day. (Yep, that’s right. Seven!)
What delights you about your current position?
I love that I get to design the craziness that is MuckFest. It’s truly a unique experience.
If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?
Cabinet making and advanced woodworking techniques.
When you have 30 minutes of free time, how do you fill the time?
Hanging out with my wife, playing with my kids, or building something in the garage.
What is something you learned in the last week?
I learned that I’m never too busy to stop and give my boy a hug. He loves hugs.
What was the last experience that made you a stronger person?
I was stressed out trying to meet a tough deadline and didn’t think it was going to happen in time. My wife was encouraging me the entire time and didn’t doubt me once. I got it done, but her confidence in me is what made me a stronger person, I couldn’t have done it without her.
If you could be any fictional character, who would you choose? Why?
I would be Yoda. He’s super wise and amazing with a light saber. Also, I love his quote, “Do or do not, there is no try.” It reminds me that failure isn’t an option.
What is your most memorable event experience?
Easy. It was July 2-5, 2008. I was the A2 for the Academy of Achievement Summit in Kona, HI. The entire week was filled with greatness, The attendees were all very accomplished people, George Lucas, Bill Russel, Desmond Tutu… the place had some big names walking around. We did a show with Taylor Swift, Joshua Bell, and Deborah Voight, but the highlight for me was the 4th of July party. I’ll never forget it; the performer arrived late and practically fell out of the golf cart onto the stage. He motioned for me to give him his guitar, plugged it in and started wailing away. Chuck Berry! Right there in front of me, singing songs I grew up listening to. It was mesmerizing. In 20 minutes it was over, he walked off the stage, handed me his guitar and said, “That’s how it’s done.” MIND BLOWN! I still have the event credential I asked him to sign.
What would you do (for a career) if you weren’t doing this?
That’s a tough one to answer, event production is pretty much all I’ve ever known. I really love woodworking though. Maybe I would’ve been a carpenter.
On event, what three things are we guaranteed to find in your bag or on your person?
On my person, I always have my pocket knife and Leatherman (yes both), my carabiner loaded with keys for just about any piece of equipment, and gloves.
One word to describe Event 360?