Gear Up for October’s Special Entertainment and Media Events!


PLASA London opens its international entertainment technology show for the event, entertainment and installation technology industries, showcasing technology and gear to an audience of pro audio, lighting and stage technology users. More specifically, PLASA London showcases new audio, video, lighting, stage engineering and systems integration technology, which generally finds its way into live events, concerts, tours, theatre productions, corporate events, venue installations, nightclubs and leisure attractions. During the show, parties, awards ceremonies and parallel events are ongoing, setting up an environment to cultivate relationships between manufacturers, distributors, rental houses, dealers and end-users. The programming at PLASA London also features well regarded and fully comprehensive seminar and workshop sessions which are open to all attendees. PLASA London is owned and organized by PLASA, an international trade association for entertainment technologies. In addition to PLASA London, which runs through October 8, PLASA Events organises a series of networking events for regional entertainment technology communities. PLASA Focus began in 2009 in Leeds in the North of England, and is now touring the US and Europe.

The 137th AES Convention is gearing up to take place October 9-12 in the revitalized L.A. Live district. Returning to Los Angeles after a nearly 12 years absence, the AES Convention will draw out audio professionals with opportunities to hear from audio industry figures while also taking in the latest research and technology information through informative papers, tutorials, workshops and special events. Neil Portnow, President/CEO of The Recording Academy (GRAMMY), will deliver a keynote address on how the Academy and its P&E Wing take on the challenges and opportunities currently facing recording professionals. There are many areas comprising AES workshops and special events that are planned. AES will debut their new “Raw Tracks” series as part of this year’s Recording and Production Track. The new series features producers and engineers discussing and deconstructing the classic recordings from some of music’s well regarded artists.

This year marks the 50th Anniversary Chicago International Film Festival.

2014 marks the 50th Anniversary Chicago International Film Festival. Cinema/Chicago, the organizer of the Chicago International Film Festival, is a year-round cultural and educational non-profit organization dedicated to promoting better communication between people of diverse cultures through the art of film and the moving image. The films are all Chicago premieres and many are world or U.S. premieres. As its October 9 Opening Night film, the festival has selected “Miss Julie,” directed by veteran actress – and Ingmar Bergman collaborator – Liv Ullmann and starring Golden Globe-award winning actors Jessica Chastain, Colin Farrell and Samantha Morton. The red carpet event starts at 18:00. Director Liv Ullmann is scheduled to attend.

There are panels and special events lined up for Chicago International Film Festival 2014. An October 14 New Directors panel, “National Identity In The Global Marketplace,” where assembled filmmakers from a cross-section of world cinema discuss the ways in which artists can create films that raise common ground sensibilities, the differences that make each culture unique, and finesse an approach toward cross border storytelling. “What Is An Independent Film?” on October 19, traces the path of filmmaking both the U.S. and abroad, since the rise of the studio system at the turn of the century, and how the integrity of independent film has been affected by the unprecedented level of access granted by present day filmmaking technologies. October 23 Closing Night celebration includes film screening – EFWILDP – and after-party to follow.

Cinema/Chicago, the presenting organization of the Chicago International Film Festival, is a year-round non-profit cultural and educational organization dedicated to promoting better communication between people of diverse cultures through the art of film and the moving image. This year the Festival presents Spotlight Scandinavia, the fourth year of the World Cinema Spotlight Program. This year’s program highlights the range of contemporary cinematic cultures across the five Nordic countries. In addition to the Chicago International Film Festival, Cinema/Chicago presents year-round public and educational programs including the Education Outreach Program, Member Screenings, the Chicago International Television Competition (April), CineYouth (May), International Screenings Program (May-September), and INTERCOM (October). Proceeds from the Chicago International Film Festival support these important initiatives.

TV:Xperience is a UX convention from the TV Connect series looking at how multiscreen is influencing the evolution of the user experience and changing the central business models around the connected tv eco-system. This is a central issue for telcos, cablecos, broadcasters and content producers looking to monetize the second screen experience. This New York City event will be building on last year’s annual, flagship TV Connect show held in London. The series is part of a global brand with regional shows in Middle East/North Africa, Eurasia, Asia and Latin America. TV:Xperience forms a tangent of the TV Connect brand, but looking more closely into the adoption of the user experience. Along with an examination of how the innovation around multiscreen content has influenced the evolving user experience, the show will place focus on new developments in User Interface (UI) and the rise in the role of content security and payment platforms to act as effective monetization models.

In more detail, agenda topics will include: Understanding the evolution of the Consumer Experience, Offering the Consumer a Unique Multiscreen Experience, Establishing Strong T Commerce and Micropayment Platforms, Analyzing the role of Big Data on an Evolving UX, Taking Multiscreen consumer relationships to the next level of engagement, Monetizing the Multiplatform Pay TV Environment, Creating End to End Multiplatform Solutions, Understanding the Role of DRM in the new UX Engaging the user in a non linear environment, Assessing how data analytics is Impacting on the future of content, Evolution of Non Linear Content and its impact on the User Experience. TV:Xperience runs for three days through October 15.

Over five days opening October 15, NYC Independent Film Festival showcases independent filmmaker, documentaries, short and feature-length films, music videos, and animation. The festival will screen narratives, documentaries, short films, super shorts, animation shorts and music videos. The festival will showcase all genres of narratives from comedy to drama and from thrillers to love stories. NYC Indie Film Festival honors the Best in Category which includes Best Narrative Feature, Best Documentary, Best Short Documentary, Best Short Narrative, Best Super Short, Best Music Video, as well as Best Director and Best Screenplay. Bob McAndrew who served in talent development capacities at Paramount, 20th Century Fox and as an independent, leads a discussion about “On Camera Acting” on October 15.

New York Independent Film Festival is talent centric in its focus, offering talks and workshops on various aspects of developing industry skills and capabilities. Attend and meet the experts on Distribution and hear what they have to say about the future of distribution during a session taking place on October 16. On October 17, Improv Nation Training Center leads a session to develop the skills necessary used to create an improv scene by focusing on the who, what, where, when and why of the scene. Also on October 17, a workshop designed to introduce directors to a step by step method of guiding and inspiring actors towards achieving specific results in their performances through the use of active language, and following that a meeting and discussion about acting with actors and actresses behind the films of the NYC Indie Film Festival.

The New York Television Festival was founded in 2005 as the TV industry’s festival for independent television creation and artist recognition. A pioneer of the “independent television” movement, the Festival maintains initiatives of development and talent identification. While maintaining a different stance to the traditional television development model, The NYTVF works in partnership with networks, studios, brands and agencies to deliver its projects and to showcase promising talent. Many activities on the NYTVF schedule are free to the public, but admission is based on seating availability. Aside from daily panels, IPC Screenings and other events, there are scheduled happy hours and cocktail parties nightly for the run of the festival (October 20-25) for NYTVF Connect Industry Pass holders. The Connect Industry Pass will provide top tier artists and entertainment executives access and opportunities that maximize Festival participation, providing them with the tools to network, build relationships and collaborate on projects.

Quite importantly, the NYTVF exists as a year-round development incubator, providing independent artists with multiple opportunities to create, share and showcase their best and most promising ideas. Each year the NYTVF offers creators opportunities to showcase their original pilots and web series through the annual Independent Pilot Competition and stand-alone sponsored initiatives. The Independent Pilot Competition (IPC) is the NYTVF’s flagship, annual competition, accepting independently-produced, original television pilots and web series from around the globe. Official Selections from the IPC will screen in competition during the annual New York Television Festival each fall. IPC Official Selections are eligible for the competition’s category and individual achievement awards as well as development deals from Festival Development Partners.

Throughout the year, the NYTVF collaborates with networks, studios, and brands to provide exclusive submission opportunities for indie creators to develop projects with industry partners. These sponsored initiatives allow creators to tailor their original projects exclusively with a particular partner in mind. In each case, the partner will guarantee a deal for at least one project selected. Projects selected as finalists or semi-finalists in sponsored initiatives will also be named as Official Selections in the New York Television Festival. The winning project will enter into an option deal with the corresponding network and the remaining finalists and/or semi-finalists will be eligible for NYTVF Festival Development Deals once the period of exclusivity with the original initiative sponsor has ended. In addition, all creators with finalists or semi-finalists projects in sponsored initiatives will be named Official Artists and are eligible for the benefits of NYTVF Connect.

PhotoPlus International Conference + Expo is a photography and imaging show happening in New York City and attended by professional photographers and enthusiasts. PhotoPlus Expo is organized by Photo District News (PDN), a monthly magazine for the professional photographer. At the expo, thousands of new products and services from exhibitors, including Canon, Nikon, Sony, and Epson will be on display. Over 90 educational seminars and intimate hands-on labs will be on the schedule to choose from. In “A Day Without News,” a keynote panel discussion, David Friend Vanity Fair’s Editor of Creative Development, Santiago Lyon Director of Photography at AP, and photojournalists Lynsey Addario, Ron Haviv, and Antonio Bolfo reveals first hand insights about how the increase in targeting of journalists at global conflict zones affects each panelist, their colleagues and the changing role of journalists overall.

PhotoPlus Expo conference seminars are held every day – October 29 through November 1 – are divided into nine program tracks: lighting, weddings and events, genres, social media/marketing, business, portraiture, filmmaking, post-production, steps. There will be a Master Class session limited to 25 participants covering Lighting/Posing, Portraiture, Editorial, Post-Production, Audio for Filmmaking, Business/Marketing, and more. A two-day Intensive Filmmaking Class, limited to 20 participants is offered. Over the two day session participants work with instructor Joe Switzer to capture, direct and produce the action and activities of the PhotoPlus Expo. The University will be a hands-on, interactive series of classes, suited for emerging photographers to learn from working professional photographers how to strengthen shooting and posing techniques as well as lighting techniques. ShootNYC @ PhotoPlus will be an informative three day event held in conjunction with the PhotoPlus Expo. It will conduct free seminars.

Jazz CD review of Ezra Brown’s The Journey.

Jazz CD Review: Considering that ‘The Journey’ is a debut album (released July 2013), Ezra Brown’s opening shot comes across with veteran instincts about the kind of music resonating throughout our mass media culture and more than just a hunch about what people like listening to in our music ecosystem. It seems that the various tracks could have their own adaption into the various industries of the professional and commercial (retail) music worlds… e.g., television and film soundtracks, commercial advertising jingles, wedding celebrations, and of course just quality, audiophile level listening music. The smooth texture of notes blown from his tenor saxophone form jazzy, soulful melodies, but with a rhythm that could have you rock side to side (or forward and back). As alluded to previously, this album and the individual singles on it (in the viewpoint of this reviewer) figure into a range of possible adoptions in the music ecosystem. ‘Flower Pot’ is certainly a danceable tune and ‘New Joint’ could be too. ‘Slow Joint’ puts me in mind of a wedding anthem, particularly after a newly wed couple at their reception has just been toasted and then takes to the floor for the first dance.

The funky ‘Cookout’, another danceable tune, is one of my favorites. I imagine it being used as a track for an urban family TV sitcom – think Sanford and Son from the 1970s. ‘Her’ seems to have a more somber tone and one could see it adapted to such appropriate occasions. ‘New Jesse Song’ is a film score waiting for placement. I could go on about EZra Brown’s debut album, who at the time of this writing is taking his music across the globe with stops in regions like South America, Europe and the Far East, but its now up to you to form your own opinions. ‘The Journey’ is available now on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play, CD Baby. And Ezra Brown, of course, maintains a Facebook Like page. This will be a great exercise for anyone purchasing Ezra Brown’s masterful work to attempt to figure out where in the professional/commercial/casual listening music spectrum do these musical pieces fit into. Your adventure awaits you!

The above events are only a sample of what is fully listed. Complete details are on the “Media, Entertainment and Performing Arts Industry News and Events” page. The events blog also shows links to pages that are translated into ten of the most widely used international languages read over the Internet other than English. This month’s photo placement highlights the opening of the Chicago International Film Festival and SoulMuzik Saxophonist, EZra Brown, for which there is a review of his debut album, ‘The Journey’. If the photo does not appear in this post please visit the blog page to view it. Looking ahead into the next month be aware that: The World Animation and VFX Summit returns to the California Yacht Club in Marina Del Rey, the American Film Market (AFM) begins a day earlier than last year in Santa Monica, Casual Connect Eastern Europe 2014 opens in Belgrade, AFI Fest 2014 will be in Hollywood, International Film Festival of Wales will be in Newport and Cardiff, The 15th Annual Latin Grammy Awards comes to Las Vegas.