TEDxBroadway Sets 5th Annual Event: What Is the Best Broadway Can Be?
“What is the best Broadway can be?” This one central question, posed each year to academics, economists, entrepreneurs, scientists, theater professionals and a full house, will once again be the cornerstone of the one-day event when TEDxBroadway returns to New World Stages (340 West 50th Street) on Monday, February 22.
“This will be our fifth TEDxBroadway,” says co-organizer Jim McCarthy, CEO of Goldstar. “We’ve had four years of sold-out events, repeating sponsors and dedicated speakers from a variety of fields, we just couldn’t be prouder of a community that is committed to making Broadway the best it can be.”
True to the TED tradition of “Ideas Worth Spreading,” TEDxBroadway selects speakers with a vast range of perspectives and expertise, some in fields you may not have even heard of yet – all with ideas worth sharing.
Speakers at this year’s event will include (additional speakers will be announced later):
- Jennifer Ashley Tepper is the Director of Programming for Broadway supper club 54 Below and author of The Untold Stories of Broadway book series.
- Randy Weiner is a producer, venue owner, and playwright who The New York Times calls “the leading impresario of nontraditional theater in New York” and who The Wall Street Journal calls “a mad genius of nightlife.” He’s the recipient of two Drama Desk Awards (Sleep No More and Queen of the Night). Weiner made his TEDxBroadway debut in February 2012 with his talk “The Future of Show Content.”
- Katie Sweeney is an ‘Autism Warrior Mom’ and a musical theater lover. She is a marketing strategist and started her own firm, OutsideIn Strategies, Inc., in 2001 specializing in qualitative research following 12 years in marketing consulting. She is on the Parent Advisory Board of SNACK (Special Needs Activity Center for Kids) and a volunteer with Achilles, the running club for the disabled.
- James Lecesne is a writer, storyteller and actor. He most recently did his off-Broadway solo show The Absolute Brightness of Leonard Pelkey. Word of Mouth, an earlier solo show, was produced by Mike Nichols and won the Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Award. He wrote the Academy Award-winning short film TREVOR, which inspired the founding of The Trevor Project, the only nationwide 24-hour suicide prevention Lifeline for LGBTQ youth.
“It’s always fun and rewarding for us to organize TEDxBroadway and hear the feedback from the day, as well as the videos that get watched online after,” adds TEDxBroadway co-organizer Damian Bazadona, founder of Situation Interactive. “The best is when someone says to me, ‘Hey, I got a great idea from TEDxBroadway last year’ or even, ‘I got an idea from that speaker on the stage three years ago.’ That’s why we do it.”
TEDxBroadway is co-organized by Damian Bazadona, founder of Situation Interactive and Jim McCarthy, CEO of Goldstar. They’re proud to welcome back co-organizing sponsors Jujamcyn Theaters and Broadway.com.