Virgin America’s Los Angeles – Seattle launch party

Virgin America‘s service between LA and Seattle kicked off this week with a bang, and Gadling was invited along for the ride.

The event, celebrating the link between two musically rich cities, started with a rock-concert send off by The Donnas at the VA gate in Los Angeles. After a brief ceremony where CEO David Cush and several Donnas members cut the symbolic ribbon, everyone jumped on the short flight up the coast.

Once things got organized, Cush said a few corporate words then Cisco Adler (Mischa Barton’s ex boyfriend and lead singer of Whitestarr) and his pal Shwayze got up, grabbed a guitar and started serenading the plane as AP and Virgin photographers stalked them through the plane. Three songs deep, the duo handed the baton off to Michael Tolcher, who, after three songs handed the baton off to the Bamboo Shoots. The four of them rocked up and down the plane for a few songs handing out goodies, standing in seats and banging on things.

The aircraft was met with by a howling crowd of Virgin America employees who, lined up on either side of a red carpet, would wildly cheer every time someone deplaned. A brief arrival party with (more) Champagne took place at the gate, then everyone dispersed to meet up for the after party at the venue, The Showbox at the Market later that evening.

The Showbox was tricked up special for the Virgin America party. Photographers were on hand to take media photos of the celebrities on hand, including Rebecca Cardon from Bravo’s Work Out and Lukas Haas. They took places in a special VIP judging section, and after a few more corporate words, Virgin hosted a quick battle of the bands where the winner was given a free music video shooting.

After the battle, The Bamboo Shoots came up for another set, followed by Thurston Moore (formally of Sonic Youth) and his new band.

You have to admit, Virgin does know how to throw a party. I met several interesting people along the road that I’ll be telling you about over the next few days once I can put my thoughts and pictures together and my hangover wears off. Stay tuned for an interview with CEO David Cush, details about the in flight experiences (business and coach), video and an unofficial report about some of the chicanery that went on, including shots with Shwayze and Cisco, the Banana Republic marketing team and a trip to the hospital.