Monday, April 25, 2011

Tickets on sale

There are less than 100 seats available to be a part of the live TEDxMichiganAve experience, and they are going fast. Seeing the videos from TED events is one thing, but it doesn't hold a candle to being in the room and discussing those talks as they're happening in real time, exchanging ideas with other TEDsters, and seeing how far those great thoughts will take us all.

Get your tickets now at Goldstar.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Speaker Announcement: Tom Tresser

Tom Tresser is a consultant, producer, educator and trainer works with individuals, companies and communities to leverage and amplify their creative assets in order to solve problems, create economic value and trigger civic engagement. In 2007 he designed and produced training programs for the provincial government of Saskatchewan on how to use the arts and creativity for local economic development. In the early 1990's he was director of cultural development at Peoples Housing, in north Rogers Park, Chicago, where he created a community arts program that blended the arts, education and micro-enterprise.

Tom has acted in some 40 shows and produced over 100 plays, special events, festivals and community programs. He was an arts activist, having organized support for pro-arts candidates and developed a cultural policy think tank at Roosevelt University in the early 1990’s, where he taught “Arts & Public Policy.” In 2003 he was appointed Visiting Fellow in Arts and Culture at the DePaul University College of Commerce’s Ryan Center for Creativity and Innovation. Tom was elected to the Abraham Lincoln Elementary School’s Local School Council and served from 2004 to 2006. He was a co-founder of Protect Our Parks, that stopped the privatization of public space in Chicago. He was a lead organizer for No Games Chicago, an all-volunteer grassroots effort that successfully opposed Chicago’s 2016 Olympic bid. He has taught workshops on “The Politics of Creativity – A Call To Service” for arts service organizations in six states. He has taught a number of classes on art, creativity and civic engagement for Loyola University, School of the Art Institute, the Illinois Institute of Technology, and DePaul University.

Tom also consults with arts organizations on strategic planning, audience development and peer-to-peer marketing. Tom has published a web-based project, “America Needs You!” – about the need for artists to get involved in politics. Tom was the Green Party candidate for the position of President of the Board of Commissioners of Cook County in November 2010. Tom just finished teaching “Got Creativity? Strategies & Tools for the Next Economy” (IIT Stuart School of Business), “Introduction to the Creative Economy” (online for Project Polymath), and “Acting Up – Using Theater & Technology for Social Change” (online for DePaul University’s School for New Learning).

Monday, April 18, 2011

Speaker Announcement: Julie Ritchey

Julie Ritchey is the artistic director of the Filament Theatre Ensemble, a Chicago-based company devoted to creating theatre in a folk tradition with an emphasis on community, imagination, and sustainability. Due to its commitment to environmental sustainability, Filament was recently named the Ensemble-in-Residence at Foresight Design. Since 2003, Foresight Design Initiative has been consulting individuals and organizations on sustainable development in Chicago, and beyond.

In addition to her work with Filament, Julie has worked professionally as a director, educator, and storyteller with the Summer Theatre of New Canaan, Idaho Shakespeare Festival, St. Benedict's High School, the Cherubs program, Northlight Theatre Academy, Park Center Montessori School, and more. She is a graduate of Northwestern University's department of Performance Studies, and a proud member of the American Alliance of Theatre and Education.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Speaker Announcement: Seth Boustead

Seth Boustead received his Master of Music Composition degree from the Chicago College for the Performing Arts. His music is regularly performed across the United States and in Europe and has been heard on radio and television stations in Chicago, San Francisco, New York and Paris among others. Recent commissions include music for Chicago Opera Vanguard, Bruce Mau Design and the Moving Architects dance troupe.

Seth is the founder and Executive Director of Access Contemporary Music, a Chicago based organization dedicated to the promotion of music by living composers. Under his leadership ACM started many of its signature programs such as Weekly Readings, Composer Alive, the ACM School of Music, and the High School Composer's Workshop, and he has been instrumental in growing the audience for ACM's live events.

Seth has been interviewed by or had writings appear in a wide variety of publications including Chicago Magazine, Time Out Chicago, Composition Today, New Music Box of the American Music Center and Chamber Music Magazine. He is a frequent guest on Chicago Public Radio and also a sought-after speaker who has given talks and panel presentations at Chamber Music America, Stanford University, the American Music Center and many others.

Speaker Announcement: Ian David Moss

As Research Director for Fractured Atlas, Ian David Moss helps institutional funders, government agencies, and others support the field more effectively by harnessing the power of data to drive informed decision-making. He designed and leads implementation of Fractured Atlas's pioneering cultural asset mapping software, Archipelago, which aggregates and visualizes information about creative activities in a particular geography in order to better illuminate who's making art, who's engaging with it, where it's happening, and how it's made possible. Ian is also the founder and editor of the highly acclaimed arts policy blog Createquity, through which he engages a readership of nearly 1,500 funders, researchers, policymakers, arts administrators, students, and artists in an ongoing conversation about the role of the arts in a creative society. His writing has been featured on the blogs or websites of the National Endowment for the Arts, Grantmakers in the Arts, Americans for the Arts, League of American Orchestras, Foundation Center, Philanthropedia, and WolfBrown, among many other organizations.

Ian received an MBA from the Yale School of Management in spring 2009. While in school, he was co-Chair of the fourth annual Yale SOM Philanthropy Conference and authored two program evaluation plans for a local community foundation and a national social service agency. During the summer of 2008, he was a participant in the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation Performing Arts Program's five-year self-evaluation process, and co-developed the logic model that the Foundation has subsequently used to allocate more than $33 million in grants to the Bay Area performing arts community.

Previously, Ian was Development Manager for the American Music Center and founded two first-of-their-kind performing ensembles in New York City: a hybrid electric chamber ensemble/experimental rock band, and a choral collective dedicated to the music of living composers. Ian is a member of the Americans for the Arts Emerging Leader Council and was recently named one of the nonprofit arts sector's top 25 "most powerful and influential leaders" by arts consultant and blogger Barry Hessenius. His article co-authored with Daniel Reid, "Audiences at the Gate: Reinventing Arts Philanthropy Through Guided Crowdsourcing," was selected from among 304 submissions for publication in Edward P. Clapp's 20UNDER40 anthology, and
can be read in its entirety for free here.

Speaker Announcement: Eric Ziegenhagen

Eric Ziegenhagen is a theater artist, musician, and consultant based in Chicago. He is a regular contributor to 2am Theatre, received a Thomas J. Watson fellowship to spend a year examining theater in bilingual cities, and has been a primary consultant for arts programs at the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation and the McKnight Foundation.

Speaker Announcement: Adam Thurman

Adam Thurman is the Founder of Mission Paradox, an organization devoted to connecting art and audience. As part of Paradox he has worked with artists and arts organizations from all over the United States.

Adam is also the Director of Marketing and Communications for Court Theatre, one of the largest nonprofit theatres in Chicago. During his tenure, the organization has had some of their highest grossing productions. All together he has helped artists sell millions of dollars worth of tickets and other merchandise.

He is a former member of the League of Chicago Theatres Board of Director and a former grant panelist for the Illinois Arts Council. He has been recognized as an Emerging Leader in the field by both Americans for the Arts and the Theatre Communications Group.

Adam also authors a widely read blog on arts and business which is available at His latest e-book, Authentic Arts Marketing, is available both on his blog at at the Amazon Kindle Store.

Speaker Announcement: Scott Walters

Scott Walters is the founder and Director of the Center for Rural Arts Development and Leadership Education (CRADLE), an organization that supports the creation of sustainable arts organizations in small and rural communities and the education arts leaders for those organizations. He is also an Associate Professor of Drama at the University of North Carolina at Asheville, and the long-time writer of the Theatre Ideas blog.

His publications include recent articles in American Theatre Magazine as well as a textbook, written with Cal Pritner, called Introduction to Play Analysis published by McGraw-Hill. He was a recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts "Access to Excellence" grant in 2009, and recently was the subject of a Studio 360 segment called "Too Much Theater?"

Walters has a doctorate from City University of New York Graduate Center, a Masters from Illinois State University, and did his undergraduate work at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Speaker Announcement: Drew McManus

Arts manager, musician, and cultural entrepreneur Drew McManus has been involved with every aspect of nonprofit performing arts organizations. He has become one of the most unique individuals in this industry who is trusted and respected by administrators, academics, board members, music directors, musicians and union officials alike.

In addition to being a recognized expert in the orchestra industry, Mr. McManus is the proprietor and author of the highly successful new media outlet Adaptistration; the only blog dedicated to issues about the orchestra business. Mr. McManus is regularly quoted as an orchestra business expert in a wide variety of international
traditional media outlets such as the New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Dallas Daily News, The Guardian Unlimited, and the Melbourne Age. Mr. McManus has been a guest on international radio programs such as NPR’s All Things Considered, WNYC’s Soundcheck with John Schaefer, and CBC Radio One’s Definitely Not The Opera.

Currently, Mr. McManus serves as a Chicago based arts consultant as well as Secretary/Treasurer of the HEARTbeats Foundation, a 501(c)3 charitable organization which strives to help children in need harness the power of music to better cope with, and recover from, the extreme challenges of poverty and conflict.

Speaker Announcement: David J. Loehr

David J. Loehr is the editor and artistic director of 2amt, a gathering place for ideas and creative work. Join the conversation at and on Twitter, using the hashtag #2amt.

He is also the artist-in-residence and co-founder of the Riverrun Theatre Company in Madison, Indiana, established in 2003. He is primarily a writer, but his specialties include sound and lighting design, graphic and artistic design, and marketing and branding strategy.

Plays include: Seeing Red, A. D., The Rough Guide to the Underworld, Keeper, Wise Man, Penguins and contributions to RiverWords, an ongoing collection of monologues, songs and other short pieces. His work has appeared at the Capital Fringe Festival, the Chicago Fringe Festival, the Louisville Playwrights Festival, Finnigan Productions, the South Carolina Repertory Company and Actors Theatre of Louisville.

A Report of Gunfire was produced by the Lethal Theatre for the Capital Fringe Festival in July 2008. It will be produced this summer by the Bindlepunks in San Francisco, CA.

He is a member of the Playwrights' Center.