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Home > Convention & Expo > 2019 IFEA Convention & Expo > Professional Education Topics > Opening Show & Keynote

Opening Show & Keynote

Scheduled to kick off the first official day of the Convention on Wednesday, September 25, 2019, the Convention Opening Show and Keynote traditionally attracts one of our largest gatherings.

Immediately following the show, our Opening Keynote speaker will share their own unique insights and experiences with an inspirational and educational session that can be applied to virtually any aspect of the festivals and events business.

Sponsor of the IFEA Annual Convention & Expo  


Making Magic: The Power of Events to Shape Impressions, Cities and History

William Schermerhorn

Creative Director for Signature Events, Colonial Williamsburg
Former VP/Creative Director, Macy's Parade & Entertainment Group
Emmy Award-Winning Songwriter

William Schermerhorn is the Creative Director of Signature Events for Colonial Williamsburg, helping to illuminate (often literally) history for countless thousands of visitors and residents alike. He is also a two-time Emmy Award-winning songwriter.

As VP/Creative Director for the Macy’s Parade & Entertainment Group, Bill brought his vision, from the initial concept through the on-air telecast, to the world-famous Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and America’s largest Independence Day pyrotechnic display, the awe-inspiring Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks, for over three decades, working alongside IFEA and industry icons Jean McFaddin and Amy Kule.

Bill's favorite creative credits include co-writing the song “And That’s the Way It Is” for Walter Cronkite’s memorial service at Lincoln Center, celebrating the Statue of Liberty’s 125th anniversary, collaborating with Universal Studios Orlando on Macy’s Holiday Parade and being Thomas Jefferson’s party planner. The Hope of Christmas, a collection of Bill’s Christmas songs, was released in 2015 and he is currently working on ‘The Club’, a noir musical (with composer Michael Feinstein) for a Richmond, VA premiere in 2020.

Bill is a graduate of The College of William & Mary. Fittingly for his event career, Bill was born on the 4th of July. He resides with his husband, Dan Dutcher in Williamsburg.

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