Testimonial: ‘@lappartchezmoi’ – fun virtual parties despite the lockdown

Testimonial: ‘@lappartchezmoi’ – fun virtual parties despite the lockdown

The many restric­tions imple­ment­ed dur­ing the Covid-19 pan­dem­ic have pre­vent­ed a large num­ber of events from tak­ing place. Despite this, some organ­is­ers have man­aged to invent con­cepts that no one had thought of before. Among the remark­able events, our atten­tion was caught by the sur­pris­ing, fun and attrac­tive par­ties organ­ised by @lappartchezmoi (L’appartement chez moi, French for ‘The flat at my place’). The events have reached up to 4,000 unique Zoom users at the same time as peo­ple par­ty at home – and that’s not includ­ing the mul­ti­ple peo­ple behind many screens.

In March 2020, Axel Bon­ni­chon launched this idea for par­ties with friends, and it soon reached unpre­dict­ed pop­u­lar­i­ty. As the man­ag­er of an events com­mu­ni­ca­tion agency, he tells us how every­thing came about and pro­vides 5 use­ful tips for event organ­is­ers of all kinds.

Sum­ma­ry

  1. Get start­ed with­out know­ing where it will lead
  2. Let atten­dees take the initiative
  3. Set a fair price
  4. Learn from each experience
  5. Use an intu­itive tick­et­ing solution

1. Get started without knowing where it will lead

Hello, Axel. Can you tell the story of @lappartchezmoi’s parties and how they were created?

It was quite sim­ple, actu­al­ly. Dur­ing the March lock­down, some friends and I quick­ly realised that it would be hard not to be able to par­ty at the week­end. I per­son­al­ly won­dered how I could help my friends stay at home to respect the lock­down. I want­ed to try some­thing online, but was com­plete­ly new to this. With my friend Bar­bara Butch, who’s a pro­fes­sion­al DJ, we filmed a DJ set that was broad­cast live on Face­book. We start­ed with­out real­ly know­ing where we were going. It could only be viewed by our friends, but they gave us great feedback.

Unfor­tu­nate­ly, Face­book doesn’t allow for easy inter­ac­tion between spec­ta­tors at a live per­for­mance. Then, one Mon­day morn­ing, dur­ing a Zoom meet­ing, I had the idea of using this plat­form rather than Face­book. And that’s how the project took off! At the first par­ty, there weren’t that many peo­ple, but the atmos­phere was instant­ly there. The atten­dees could see one anoth­er. They real­ly want­ed to par­ty while relax­ing at home, sort of pro­tect­ed in their cocoon. And then it got big­ger and big­ger as the week­ends went by.

@lappartchezmoi offers a form of escapism for atten­dees. We’ve received mes­sages from peo­ple telling us just that. We’ve reached up to 4,000 unique users, and there are often sev­er­al peo­ple behind each screen. Since the lat­er lock­down in Novem­ber, there have been few­er peo­ple as we’ve set an entry price and the restric­tions are less strict. We have an aver­age of 200 unique users, but with 5 to 10 peo­ple behind each screen. We’ve kept only the reg­u­lars, which has its advantages.

2. Let attendees take the initiative

Your parties, despite being virtual, are really fun, sometimes more so than in-person events. How did you make this possible?

We attract­ed warm peo­ple because we com­mu­ni­cat­ed with Barbara’s com­mu­ni­ty, and she’s very open and car­ing. This imme­di­ate­ly cre­at­ed an atmos­phere of trust. Then the press quick­ly report­ed on it, which attract­ed a wider vari­ety of peo­ple – the old, the young, fam­i­lies, and so on.

The 9 p.m. sched­ule also made it pos­si­ble to bring togeth­er a large audi­ence and cre­ate a fun­ny kind of atmos­phere, with some peo­ple at the table or wash­ing up while oth­ers dance like at a ‘real par­ty’. Not every­thing that hap­pens at the par­ties could hap­pen in a night­club or else­where. Then, as time goes by, it looks more like a big par­ty and peo­ple let them­selves go – and they need to, giv­en the situation.

All of this was a bit over­whelm­ing for us. If we’d been told a few months ago “Par­ty at home through your web­cam”, we wouldn’t have believed it. In fact, atten­dees take over the par­ty by installing lights, dress­ing up, and so on. They’re the ones who cre­ate a ‘vir­tu­al fam­i­ly night­club’ atmos­phere. All we do is cre­ate the con­di­tions (the music, ‘rules of con­duct’, a spir­it of free­dom, etc.) to make sure every­thing goes well. They do the rest.

3. Set a fair price

How did the transition from free tickets to paid tickets happen? And why the change?

First, it allowed us to cush­ion the pur­chas­ing of equip­ment, the Zoom sub­scrip­tion and the design for the com­mu­ni­ca­tion visu­als. And most impor­tant­ly, Bar­bara has no more income since the night­clubs closed. It’s impor­tant that she sees the fruits of her labour. So, after 3 months of free par­ties, we decid­ed to opt for paid tick­ets, and no one complained.

We’ve set a low price and each per­son can decide to add a cer­tain amount depend­ing on the num­ber of peo­ple behind the screen. This is still a new for­mat – we had to attract an audi­ence, which is hard­er when tick­ets cost money.

At the same time, the price is a bar­ri­er to entry, so we have few­er curi­ous peo­ple tak­ing part and few­er press reports. The advan­tage is that peo­ple who con­tin­ue to attend are much more like­ly to play the game and leave all their cam­eras on. Pre­vi­ous­ly we were gen­er­al­ly at 50–50. We’ve gone down in num­bers but gained in human warmth.

4. Learn from each experience

Does this give you ideas for what to do next? Do you want to organise more parties when party venues reopen?

Not nec­es­sar­i­ly. Since we don’t know when venues will reopen, we’ll con­tin­ue to organ­ise these vir­tu­al par­ties. And then I think that this sit­u­a­tion will come to an end. We all have jobs and these par­ties are organ­ised in a real­ly spe­cif­ic con­text. It’s far from being eco­nom­i­cal­ly viable. The expe­ri­ence is great, and it does some good for every­one, but in the long term it would be hard to sustain.

On the oth­er hand, I think that in the dis­tant future, let’s say sev­er­al years, it could become a wide­spread trend again. Event organ­is­ers will have every rea­son to offer online expe­ri­ences to com­ple­ment the in-per­son ones. Why deprive your­self of a poten­tial audi­ence that’s too far away or can’t travel?

5. Use an intuitive ticketing solution

You turned to Weezevent in order to sell your tickets. Why?

I made a quick bench­mark includ­ing the dif­fer­ent online tick­et­ing solu­tions, and the first advan­tage of work­ing with Weezevent is that you can quick­ly cal­cu­late your rev­enue and the share of com­mis­sion tak­en. Sec­ond, the solu­tion is extreme­ly well made. It took me an hour at most to dis­cov­er everything.

Giv­en the week­ly fre­quen­cy of the par­ties, I just have to dupli­cate the events, which can be done in 2 clicks. The solu­tion is total­ly what we need in terms of sim­plic­i­ty and effi­cien­cy. For each event, I use the Weezevent mini-site which I pub­lish on our Insta­gram page and Barbara’s page. Our sub­scribers and those who are curi­ous are redi­rect­ed straight to the box office. It’s as sim­ple for them as it is for me.


The suc­cess of @lappartchezmoi’s vir­tu­al par­ties is proof that event organ­is­ers are more than capa­ble of rein­vent­ing them­selves. Want to expe­ri­ence the adven­ture of online events? Weezevent offers a set of ded­i­cat­ed solu­tions which are easy to set up. Con­tact our advis­ers to choose the con­fig­u­ra­tion that best suits your event:

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