Yes, That's ShoreTel's CEO Stage Diving: Scenes From M5's NYC Rock Blowout

Cloud telephony provider M5 Networks, which was recently acquired by ShoreTel and is now ShoreTel's Cloud Division, hosted a blowout Battle of the Bands in New York City earlier this month -- a team building exercise in which various M5 employees received instruction from the renowned School of Rock and got to test out their chops in front of a live audience.

It was definitely a work hard, play hard kind of day: executives from ShoreTel and M5 greeted analysts, press and partners to talk up ShoreTel's cloud strategy before everyone headed to the club -- and the bar -- to see a host of M5 bands made up of employees from its New York, Rochester and Chicago offices.

M5 said it had more than 1,000 attendees at the battle -- partners, employees, customers, guests -- and ShoreTel itself even got in on the action, too. CRN was also on hand, and here's a look at what went down on a loud, proud night in the Big Apple.

Slide 2 and Slides 4-21 courtesy Eric Wolfe Photography.

ShoreTel and M5 set up the battle at NYC's cavernous Terminal 5, a rock club way out near the West Side Highway on the far side of midtown Manhattan. There was plenty to eat and drink inside, however, for those who made the trek.

Attendees were encouraged to liven up their name tags a bit, though we wonder how many could make good on a declaration like this.

CRN missed the memo about showing up in event-appropriate attire.

They called themselves the TBDs: Brittney Liburd, associate product manager, and a band of aces that included M5-ers Shane Thompson, Jason Raggio, Yaniv Schahar and Seth Johnson.

Jeff Valentine (left), senior vice president of product at M5, looked a little different from the smart suit he'd been giving presentations in earlier in the day. His band was Second Best Charisma: Valentine, Sandra House, Pilar Candia, Bill Fuller, Tim Fuller and Glenn Beaton.

On the scene with Bernard Gutnick, left, ShoreTel senior director of product marketing.

Another of the evening's rock-out contenders: the Kims, featuring M5 Networks Sales Coordinator Kimberly Torres, along with M5-ers Bridget Lancaster, Alex Pomeranets, Steve Klin and Rob Romano.

ShoreTel CEO Peter Blackmore (left) and Dan Hoffman, former M5 Networks CEO and now president and general manager of ShoreTel's Cloud Division.

Hoffman grabs the mic to kick off the evening.

MC Erde in Elvis whites. No word on whether Mike Erde, M5 Networks systems engineer, comes to work in that every day.

F-Franco was first up on the night: M5 employees Amanda Hughes, Adam Klein, Courtenay Barnes, Alex Hart and Harrison Warner.

Representing M5's Chicago branch, the Tele-Phonies: Austin Skelton, Brian Dunne, Justin Asch, Jesse Howard, Josh Robbins and Sam Dabrowski.

Well, it is.

A good looking rocker crew.


They're called May Contain Awesome, and that they were, winning Battle of the Bands and the People's Choice Award for the evening. M5-ers include Myriah Marsh, Kyle Dawson, Jeremy Brown, Chris Scholz and Prasana "PK" Kanagaiah.

…or you're all fired.

ShoreTel CEO Blackmore channels his inner Iggy Pop.

That's real live poster art, folks, and there was Battle of the Bands merch aplenty throughout the night.

It was only fitting that ShoreTel put together a band, as well -- a late breaking entry into the battle.

Hoffman, Blackmore and company loading up the stage for a show-closing blowout.