We have our musical festivals, our spinach festival, our theater-on-the-fringe festival and just the other day we had our big baseball fest. Coming soon is another round of TEDxKC, which you might consider as a kind of big-idea fest.
By STEVE PAUL
The Kansas City Star
TEDxKC is a locally licensed arm of the powerhouse TED movement — technology, entertainment and design — a sprawling, global collection of conferences and mostly educational multimedia programs.
After a few formative years straining the auditorium space at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, the next Kansas City TED event, an evening of live lectures and performances, will be Aug. 28 at the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets will go on sale, at the Kauffman boxoffice and website ( kauffmancenter.org), at 10 a.m. July 18. Tickets are $15 each, including a $6 service fee.
The theme is “The Long View,” based on the idea of bringing long-term, generational perspectives to social and cultural problems.
Mike Lundgren, an admitted “TED fanatic,” is the TEDxKC licensee.
“People are excited about the idea of ideas.” Lundgren said the other day. “And I wanted to bring the TED experience and that energy back to KC. It’s a chance to allow that tribe to get together and bask in ideas worth spreading.”
Lundgren works at VML, an advertising and consulting firm, which is an event co-sponsor, along with the Kauffman Center, the Nelson-Atkins Museum and others. Another co-sponsor, KCPT, will be airing a video of the 2011 TEDxKC event beginning July 19.
Among the presenters on Aug. 28:
• Janine Shepherd: “You are not Your Body” Shepherd is a paraplegic, pilot, aerobatics instructor and motivational speaker who “explores the impact of loss on the human psyche and the universal quest to find meaning and fulfillment.”
• Jeff Carter: “Extreme Identity” A corporate strategist on issues of “privacy, transparency and digital expediency.”
• Samuel Arbesman: “The Half-Life of Facts” A mathematician, science writer and senior scholar at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation talks about how knowledge evolves.
• Shai Reshef: “Open-Sourcing Higher Education” The president of a free online university spreads the word on widening access to knowledge around the world.
• Amber Rubarth, a singer/songwriter, performing with cellist Dave Eggar and Max ZT, a noted performer on the hammered dulcimer.
• Max Strom: “There is no App for Happiness” An inspirational teacher and speaker presents a program on self-fulfillment through “innate technology.”
• John Gerzema: “Athena Doctrine” A social theorist reports on a global study of innovative responses to “economic and social crisis.”
Ticketholders also will gain admittance to two pre-conference receptions on Aug. 3 and 25. To keep up with the local effort, find its website at tedxkc.org.
Steve Paul, senior writer and arts editor: 816-234-4762, firstname.lastname@example.org; on Twitter: @sbpaul.