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Tongal co-founders in black tie join KISS frontman Gene Simmons

A Tongal time was had by all! From left: Tongal Co-Founder Mark Burrell, Tongal Co-Founder and President James De Julio, KISS frontman Gene Simmons and Tongal Co-Founder and CEO Rob Salvatore (Photo courtesy Tongal)

Rollicking Tongies! KISS frontman Gene Simmons and sassy swingers The Pointer Sisters rocked the house at the inaugural Tongie Awards ceremony, a brand ad competition sponsored by Santa Monica-based creative agency Tongal.

Tongal has created a unique niche for itself, building a global community-sourced platform for content that matches brands with talent. This first kudofest, which took place April 2 at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles, was an inventive way to bring recognition to its enterprising community of contributors, explained company Co-Founder and President James De Julio.

A total of 13 Tongies were awarded (click here for clips) to celebrate the innovations, ideas and videos contributing to global campaigns for brands, film studios and music, with artists flying in from all over the globe to celebrate, including from Argentina, Germany, Sweden, Malaysia and Canada.

Simmons got a rousing reception when he stepped onstage, surprising the crowd by presenting the Best Original Song award to Texas-based SnapBrothers Productions for Welch’s Fruit Snacks. At the show’s conclusion, R&B group The Pointer Sisters took the stage to perform some of their biggest hits, including “Jump,” “I’m So Excited” and “Fire.”

Simmons and his KISS bandmates will also be kicking off a Tongal campaign this week to source big ideas on how the band can celebrate their 40th anniversary in style, which is part of Tongal’s new “Left Field” initiative.

Neon glow of vintage marquee for the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles promotes the "Tongies," an awards show for advertising.

Santa Monica-based Tongal lights up the night at the El Rey Theatre on Wilshire. (Photo courtesy Tongal)

Other top winners of the evening included Alabama native David Kilgo, who took home a Tongie for his work on Pringles and Star Wars. In addition, Charles Frank from Massachusetts came out on top in the ‘Best Broadcast Spot’ category based on his ‘Growing in Pieces’ video for Hasbro. A group of community members were also inducted into the Tongal Hall of Fame, including some who have contributed to brand campaigns since the company’s inception in 2009.

“This was an amazing night where we brought together some of the best Tongalers in our history and recognized all the creative work this community has delivered the past year,” De Julio added. “To have all these people in one room, joined by the likes of Gene Simmons and The Pointer Sisters, is a huge milestone for our company and a sign of exciting things to come.”

Each Tongie award featured a replica of the company’s expanded logo, the triumphant hand holding a lightning bolt to signify the creative ideas that generate from the Tongal community. A full list of the 13 Tongie categories, winners and brands are as follows:

Tongaler of the Year: The award recognizing contributions across categories went to Convoy Entertainment, a Los Angeles-based production company founded by Marshall Cook and Tyler Hawes. In addition to the Tongaler of the Yearaward, Convoy Entertainment was also nominated in the Best Comedy category for their work with Glide.

Video of the Year: The Tongies equivalent of “Best Picture” was awarded to Stephan Malik from Los Angeles for his inspiring tribute to the work ethic of Oral-B employees on behalf of the brand.

Best Broadcast Spot: Charles Frank – ‘Growing in Pieces’ – Hasbro

Best 2D Animation: Dylan Woodley – ‘Chapter 6, Unto the Breach’ – The LEGO Group

Best Comedy: David Brashear – ‘Get Your Own’ – Philips Norelco

Best Idea: David Kilgo – ‘Imitating Vader’ – Pringles and Star Wars

Best Wildcard Video: Mike Goubeaux – ‘Medicine Cabinet’ – Ricola

Ideator of The Year: Julia Lee

Best 3D Animation: Margaret Condol – ‘Tony’s Nightmare’ – The LEGO Group

Best Foreign Language Video: Rudolphson and Krueger – ‘On My Way’ – Shutterstock

Best Long-Form Video: The Indie Machines – “5,000 LEGO Bricks, Unlimited Inspiration”– The LEGO Group

Best Original Song: SnapBrothers Productions – ‘The Fruit Will Set You Free’ – Welch’s Fruit Snacks

Best Short-Form Video: Tarik Karam – ‘Clean. Clear. Confident.’ – Johnson & Johnson

All Tongie nominations were determined by the Tongies Nominating Committee and winners were chosen through an onlinevoting process by fans and community members (known as ‘Tongalers’). For more information, visit tongal.com.

Interior of the El Rey Theatre arranged for a dinner party and awards show.

Elegant fun was the theme at the Tongies, a new annual advertising awards show presented by Tongal, a community-sourced platform for creative work. (Photo courtesy Tongal)

Tongaler of the Year Award went to Convoy Entertainment. Picured, LtoR are Snap's Marshall Cook and Tyler Hawes.

The coveted Tongaler of the Year Award went to Convoy Entertainment, a Los Angeles-based company founded by Marshall Cook (left) and Tyler Hawes. (Photo by Aaron Poole / Andrew D. Bernstein Associates Photography)

Texas-based SnapBrothers won best song. Partners Christopher Bookman in a tux and Dylan Walker in a suit looked natty in coordinated red-and-black formalwear.

Christopher Bookman and Dylan Walker, of Texas-based SnapBrothers Productions, won Best Original Song for Welch’s Fruit Snacks. (Photo by Scott Quintard / Andrew D. Bernstein Associates Photography)

Mike Gourbeaux was joined onstage by a toothbrush to accept his Best Wildcard Video award for "Medicine Cabinet."

Mike Gourbeaux won Best Wildcard Video for “Medicine Cabinet,” on behlaf of client Ricola. (Photo by Aaron Poole / Andrew D. Bernstein Associates Photography).

Stephan Malik won the Tongie for Video of the Year for "An Ode to the Toothbrush,

Stephan Malik won the Tongie for Video of the Year for “An Ode to the Toothbrush,” for client Oral B. (Photo by Aaron Poole / Andrew D. Bernstein Associates Photography)

Tongie trophy close-up

The Tongie up-close: Margaret Condol’s award for Best 3D Animation for “Tony’s Nightmare,” for The LEGO Group (Photo by Aaron Poole / Andrew D. Bernstein Associates Photography)

Tongal co-founders Mark Burrell, James De Julio and Rob Salvatore sport tuxes on the red carpet at the first annual Tongies award show.

Tongal co-founders Mark Burrell, James De Julio and Rob Salvatore arrive at the El Rey Theatre for the First Annual Tongies. (Photo by Aaron Poole / Andrew D. Bernstein Associates Photography)

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by Brandon Gutman
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Brandon is an expert connector and seasoned business development professional. As Principal of Brand Approved, he's led the advisory to become the bridge between brand marketers and best of breed service providers that are reshaping the industry.

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