PechaKucha Night, running in over 700 cities, was started in Tokyo in 2003 as an event for designers to meet, network and show their work in public. PechaKucha Nights are informal gatherings where creative people get together and share their ideas, works, thoughts, holiday snaps – practically anything – in the PechaKucha 20×20 format. PechaKucha 20×20 is a simple presentation format where you show 20 images, each for 20 seconds. The images advance automatically and you talk along to the images.
PechaKucha Nights are mostly held in fun spaces with a bar, similar to the home of the original PechaKucha Night in Tokyo, SuperDeluxe, which is a space for “thinking and drinking.” In the month of February, PechaKucha Nights will be held in the following districts: Veenendaal, Surrey, Dumaguete, Utrecht, Springfield, Blue Mountains, Orlando, Markham, Bandar Seri Begawan, Dunsborough, Bozeman, Arendal, Christchurch, Dnipropetrovsk, Bozeman, Dumaguete, Oklahoma City, Knoxville, Jackson and beyond. Klein Dytham Architecture, who originated the format in Tokyo, still organize and support the global PechaKucha Night network and organize PechaKucha Night Tokyo.
An upcoming PechaKucha, held in Orlando on February 6, highlights the movies with presentations about every aspect of film – from storytelling and screenplays to the real-life stories of film production in Florida. PechaKucha Night as an entertainment event is scheduled several times a year in downtown Orlando. It includes mingling and socializing, followed by an hour of PowerPoint presentations on a variety of topics, led by invited guests. Drawing its name from the Japanese term for “chitchat,” most people use PechaKucha Night to present their latest creative projects or work. Others share their passion and show prized collections they own. Good PechaKucha presentations are the ones that uncover the unexpected – unexpected talent, unexpected ideas.
The annual GRAMMYs
The annual GRAMMY event is a peer-presented award to honor artistic achievement, technical proficiency and overall excellence in the recording industry, without regard to album sales or chart position. A GRAMMY is awarded by The Recording Academy’s voting membership to acknowledge this achievement in the recording arts and sciences. For this year’s 57th GRAMMY Awards on February 8 in Hollywood, former GRAMMY winner and actor, LL Cool J, returns to host the awards for a fourth consecutive year. The 57th Annual GRAMMY Awards are produced by AEG Ehrlich Ventures for The Recording Academy. Ken Ehrlich is executive producer,
Just a partial listing of nominees includes: for Record Of The Year, Fancy, performed by Iggy Azalea featuring Charli XCX; Chandelier, performed by Sia; Stay With Me (Darkchild Version), performed by Sam Smith; Shake It Off, performed by Taylor Smith; All About That Bass, Meghan Trainor. For Album Of The Year, Morning Phase, performed by Beck; Beyonce, performed by Beyonce; X, performed by Ed Sheeran; In The Lonely Hour, performed by Sam Smith; Girl, performed by Pharrell Williams. For Song Of The Year, All About That Bass, written by Kevin Kadish & Meghan Trainor; Chandelier, written by Sia Furler and Jesse Shatkin; Shake It Off, written by Max Martin, Shellback and Taylor Swift; Stay With Me (Darkchild Version), written by James Napier, William Phillips and Sam Smith; Take Me To Church, written by Andrew Hozier-Byrne. Best New Artist nominees include: Iggy Azalea, Bastille, Brandy Clark, Haim, Sam Smith.
In one of the show’s spotlight entertainment presentations, sixteen-time GRAMMY winner and Recording Academy Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Tony Bennett and five-time GRAMMY winner Lady Gaga are nominated for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album for Cheek To Cheek. The duo will perform together as well in the show’s musical collaborations that are known as “GRAMMY Moments.” Other confirmed performers lined up to showcase their talents for the GRAMMYs currently include: AC/DC, Eric Church, Common, Ariana Grande, Miranda Lambert, John Legend, Madonna, Ed Sheeran, Sam Smith, Usher, and Pharrell Williams. Additional performers and presenters will join this list by curtain time.
The GRAMMY Awards will be broadcast in high definition and 5.1 surround sound on the CBS Television Network from 20:00-23:30 (ET/PT). For updates and breaking news, please visit The Recording Academy’s social networks on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. The non-telecast pre-awards, Premiere Ceremony hosted by Hunter Hayes will take place at a separate venue – Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE from 15:30 – 18:30 ET.
Digital Media India Conference
Digital Media India Conference in New Delhi explores the trends and challenges of how traditional news publishers cater to their digital audiences in a sustainable way, how to channel opportunities for audience interactivity in the digital space, and establishing revenue opportunities other than advertising. With over 200 million internet users in India today and with the projections of 300 million Indian language internet users by 2017, India is is experiencing considerable growth of digital media business for news publishers. Attendees to Digital Media India 2015 get the opportunity to learn more about content for the digital audience, retooling the traditional newsroom for digital news delivery, sifting through audience data, exploring ad aggregators at the two-day conference.
Kalle Jungkvist, Senior Advisor at Scandinavian media Group Schibsted, leads a pre-conference workshop on February 9 for senior executives to look at various strategic approaches that traditional media companies can follow to survive and grow in digital space. Raghav Bahl, Founder of Network 18, delivers the conference keynote address on the future of news business. The regular conference begins February 10, where thought leaders will present their leading edge research and implementations during Digital Media India 2015.
DMI attendees will hear Nathalie Malinarich, Editor, Mobile and New Formats at BBC News Online, share insights on how a big news organisation like the BBC has adapted to changing audience expectations and reached new users by focusing on innovation. Trushar Barot, Apps Editor for BBC World Service, will discuss findings of the editorial experiments carried out by BBC News during the last Indian general election where BBC used chat apps to connect with their audience and collect feedback and user-generated content. Nandagopal Rajan, New Media Editor at Indian Express shares IndianExpress.com strategy on its redesign and relaunch project that led to Indian Express repackaging their content on social network sites for the casual reader.
The World Association of Newspapers
Conference mentor, The World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers, or WAN-IFRA, is a global organisation of the world’s press, representing more than 18,000 publications, 15,000 online sites and over 3,000 companies in more than 120 countries. As a trade association with a human rights mandate, WAN-IFRA serves as a world-wide platform for the exchange of ideas, information and experiences among its members and other participants in the news publishing industry. It is also the industry’s leading “think tank” for new strategies, business models, and operational improvements. WAN-IFRA carries out its work from headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany, and in Paris, France, with subsidiaries in Singapore and India.
PLASA Focus comprises a series of leading regional events for entertainment technology communities in the North of England, and North America. It showcases an exhibition of new audio, lighting, video and staging technology used in live events, concerts, tours, theatre productions, corporate events, venue installations, nightclubs and leisure attractions. Registration for the exhibition is free of charge, and includes free entry into a two day Professional Development Program. In Orlando, where PLASA will set up it’s tent from February 17-18, there are planned free seminars, product demonstrations and product training from local and national companies. Experts will cover a wide breadth of areas, from the fundamentals of audio and lighting to the latest emerging technologies and trends. ElektraLite presents Richard Pilbrow at Plasa Focus on February 17 at 09:00 discussing 50 years of revolutionary change that has occurred in stage lighting theatre technology and theatre architecture and a hint of what is to come. He will also do a book signing on the show floor.
The Oscars acknowledges the past year’s greatest cinema achievements as determined by a voting body of motion picture enthusiasts. The Academy’s roughly 6,000 members vote for the Oscar nominees using secret ballots, which are tabulated by the international auditing firm of PricewaterhouseCoopers. The 87th Academy Awards from Hollywood will be televised live February 22, by the ABC Television Network (19:00 ET/16:00 PT). Craig Zadan and Neil Meron are producers for this years show. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide. Neil Patrick Harris is the host of the 87th Academy Awards show.
In this year, nominees in the category of Best Actor are: Steve Carell, Bradley Cooper, Benedict Cumberbatch, Michael Keaton, Eddie Redmayne. Nominees in the category of Best Actress are: Marion Cotillard, Felicity Jones, Julianne Moore, Rosamund Pike, Reese Witherspoon. Nominees in the category of Directing include: Alejandro G. Inarritu, Richard Linklater, Bennett Miller, Wes Anderson, Morten Tyldum. Nominated for Best Picture are: Whiplash, The Theory of Everything, Selma, The Imitation Game, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Boyhood, Birdman or (The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance), American Sniper.
Typically during every Oscar period there is a build up during the days before the Awards of events and showcases that culminate with the Oscar presentations. This year’s Oscar contenders converged at the Beverly Hilton on February 2 to be honored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences at their annual Nominees Luncheon. Nominated actors including Steve Carell, Bradley Cooper, Marion Cotillard, Felicity Jones, Michael Keaton, Julianne Moore would be expected to attend. At least three of the nominated directors, Richard Linklater, Bennett Miller and Morten Tyldum, were expected to join the lunch. Actors Margot Robbie and Miles Teller will host the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Scientific and Technical Awards Presentation on February 7, at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills. They will present 21 awards to 58 individual recipients during the evening.
And musical talent prevails at the show with noted Country singer/songwriter and previous GRAMMY winner, Tim McGraw performing the Oscar-nominated song “I’m Not Gonna Miss You” for Glen Campbell at the show. Musical artists Common and John Legend will perform their Oscar-nominated song “Glory” at the show which has been nominated for an Original Song award. Singer, songwriter and actress Rita Ora will make her Oscar stage debut this year to perform the Oscar-nominated song “Grateful.” “Grateful,” written by Diane Warren for the film Beyond the Lights, which is nominated for Original Song award.
The Oscars is presented by parent organization, American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), started to recognize excellence of professionals in the film industry. AMPAS was originally conceived by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer studio boss Louis B. Mayer as a professional honorary organization to help improve the film industry’s image and help mediate labor disputes. As time-honored Oscar traditions keep in step with new technology, 2015 Oscar content will be available on a multitude of devices to complement the 87th Academy Awards.
Broadcast Video Expo
Broadcast Video Expo showcases the products, services and technologies for taking broadcast quality content from conception to consumption. Free to attend with advance registration, the London based show displays the latest in broadcast and production technologies and offers programs by expert-led seminar content. BVE 2015 will host over 300 exhibitors, including professional production and broadcast equipment and systems, covering everything from camera accessories to 360 workflow solutions. Anyone interested in attending the three day expo can register for a free ticket at the BVE website. Writer and performer Adam Buxton is slated to deliver the show’s keynote talk in conversation with Writer, Director and Actor Richard Ayoade.
Facilitated networking has been made a special feature at BVE with a Skills and Networking Zone added to BVE 2015, providing visitors with access to opportunities, fresh ideas and the ability to reach out to their professional peers. Each exclusive networking session will run for an hour, accommodating 40 people. The Skills and Networking Zone has been structured to provide educational master classes conducted by industry experts from BBC Academy, Raindance Film Festival, BECTU and other media outlets. A session set for opening day of February 24 – Live! Ammunition! – is an opportunity to pitch an idea directly to a panel of film executives. Participants are given exactly two minutes to convince the panellists to read their script and/or make a film from it. The judges will award the best pitch, so that it can be set on track for multi-media, film, TV production.
At least 144 seminars are planned that can be attended. “TV, what are our most valuable formats in the UK? How can these be successfully translated for international audiences?” is a planned February 24 panel. “When worlds collide: The future of broadcast and digital, and how we tell stories now” is the title for a topic delivered by Ben Lunt, Head of Multiplatform, Leo Burnett. A panel presentation, “Connecting sound and vision to achieve the best footage” happens on February 25. Jonas Anschutz, Business Affairs Manager, Red Arrow Media, discusses “Working with the likes of Netflix, Amazon and Hulu in creating content” the same day. A February 26 panel addresses, “Calling all ambitious filmmakers! How to fund your next production.” Televisual Media hosts a session on “4K Workflows.” Tanya Laird, Digital Jam, Ltd., makes a presentation on “Marketing digital and video content: The art and science of Social Audiences.”
As the GRAMMY Awards happen earlier in the month in Hollywood, across the pond in London the 35th edition of the British Phonographic Industry’s annual pop music award – the BRIT Awards – is set for February 25. Nominees in the category of British Breakthrough Act include: CHVRCHES, FKA Twigs, George Ezra, Royal Blood, Sam Smith. Nominees in the category of British Female Solo Artist include: Ella Henderson, FKA Twigs, Jessie Ware, Lily Allen, Paloma Faith. Nominees in the category of British Male Solo Artist include: Damon Albarn, Ed Sheeran, George Ezra, Paolo Nutini, Sam Smith. Nominees in the category of British Group include: Alt-J, Clean Bandit, Coldplay, One Direction, Royal Blood. Nominees in the category of International Group include: The War On Drugs, 5 Seconds Of Summer, The Black Keys, First Aid Kit, Foo Fighters. Leading up to the awards, BRITs Week, is a joint partnership between the BPI and AEG and made possible with support from London First, to present a series of special one-off gigs and events taking place in London in celebration of the most prestigious night in the UK music calendar. The awards will be broadcast live on ITV network from 20:00 GMT and will be hosted by Ant and Dec.
Country Radio Seminar
Country Radio Seminar is the annual convention with conferences, music showcases, extensive networking, with the sole purpose to aid and facilitate business practices in the Country music industry, that bear directly on the issues relevant to Country radio. Parent and convention organizer, Country Radio Broadcasters, Inc., was created to provide a platform and structure for education and growth within the Country Music format. Country Radio broadcasters from around the nation attend to sharpen skills, facilitate business and promote the growth of the industry. Entrepreneur and philanthropist, Todd Wagner (interactive charity broadcast network, Chideo; Todd Wagner Foundation), will deliver the event’s keynote.
Various event staging areas will be set up throughout the convention space. The Artist Humanitarian Award Presentation will be presented to Lady Antebellum on February 25 and is a featured panelists for “How 3 Become 1: Lady Antebellum.” The St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s Internet Cafe at CRS will give visitors a space to relax and enjoy pastries and lattes. The cafe will also have laptops and a cell phone charging station so make sure to swing in to power up or to check their e-mail. There will be a SESAC sponsored Networking Lounge in operation. A Media Center is made available to approved media and publicists whom are conducting interviews with their artists during CRS 2015. The space is equipped with interview booths and availability is on a first come, first serve basis. Interviews are scheduled in advance of the seminar.
For the fourth consecutive year, “Bob Kingsley’s Acoustic Alley” will return to Country Radio Seminar on February 26 with a lineup of veteran songwriters. This year’s Acoustic Alley runs from 19:00 until midnight at the Renaissance Hotel’s Belmont Room. Food and beverages will be available. Bob DiPiero, Michael Carter, Rhett Akins, JT Harding, Ross Cooperman, Jon Nite, Chris DeStefano, and others are some of the songwriters slated to take the stage to perform.
And There’s More
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 displays selected nominees taking part in this year’s GRAMMY and Oscar award presentation shows. 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: AFCI Locations Show opens in Los Angeles, Cinequest Film Festival will be in the neighborhood of several media tech heavyweights – San Jose, the highly anticipated South by Southwest (SXSW) expo is back home in Austin, Fespaco Ouagadougou showcasing products/services from the media and advertising industry will be in Ouagadougou, Cinema Production Service Expo will be in Moscow, annual trade fair for media professionals, Media Days Gothenburg, opens in Gothenburg.