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| Culture |

Night Tennis Unites Sony Ericsson and Winter Music Conference

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'Tis the season once again for the pill poppers of the world to converge on our sunny shores and shamelessly indulge their deepest, darkest addictions as Miami plays host to the world's hottest DJs, including industry gods Paul Oakenfold, Tiesto, Sasha, Armin Van Buuren, and Carl Cox.

Yes, it's Winter Music Conference time, so grab your glow sticks, step into some comfy shoes, and slip on your grotesquely oversized Euro-shades, because we have seven solid days of raving to get through.

This week is also the beginning of the Sony Ericsson Open (formerly the Nasdaq) tennis tournament. And this year the two have partnered up for what promises to be one electrifying event.

The concept is simple: Take that glow-stick theme, only replace the sticks with elite-non-drugged-out-athletes, cover them with glow-in-the-dark clothing, and place them, rackets in hand, in a completely blacked-out room. What do you get? Night Tennis, complete with soundtrack spun live by non other than the iconic Oakenfold.

"We are playing tennis in a way that's never been done before," says Dean Taylor, Senior Manager of Sponsorship Marketing for Sony Ericsson. "We're trying to broaden the lure of the game and deliver it to a younger audience."

Eight of the industry's top players, Taylor explained, will descend on the Ice Palace Thursday and Friday beginning at 11:00 p.m. for a game like no other.

"It's a totally dark place with a 30 foot TV screen behind it that broadcasts special messages, trick shots, and video clips," says Taylor who explained only the lines of the court, ball, and net will be illuminated by the UV lights. "Its going to be amazing to watch."

The concept was launched in Madrid last year to rave reviews. The U.S. debut this week will also feature a fashion show of especially designed glow-in-the-dark clothing by Gen Art. --Joanne Green

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