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15 April 2011

A chance to audition your own TED Talk!

On May 24, we’re holding the first-ever public audition for TED Talks. It will take place in New York in front of a live audience made up of TED staff and members of the TED community. The audition will be recorded, and the best talks could either be posted on TED.com or win an invitation for a full-on mainstage presentation at TED2012 in California early next year.

We’re holding this audition to give a chance to the undiscovered talent we know is out there — and especially talent that can help us continue to reinvent the ancient art of the spoken word. At TED2012, our whole theme will be devoted to this. We’re calling it “Full Spectrum” — the rich use of technologies, formats and styles to make an impact on an audience. And that’s what we’ll be looking for in this audition.

Imagine:
– a ‘slide-blizzard,’ a presentation containing more images than words
– a talk accompanied by an imaginative soundtrack
– a talk given in front of a custom-animated movie
– clever ‘choreography’ between a speaker’s words and what we see on-screen
– improv / audience interaction
– intense campfire-style storytelling
– a brilliant performance (music, spoken-word, dance … surprise us!)
– a rant delivered at blitzkrieg pace, an intelligent comic routine, a mystery
– a remarkable new invention
– or… just an amazingly good classic TED talk with an ingenious ‘idea worth spreading’

We’d like to test some of these presentation formats and get exposed to any other innovations that may be lurking out there in how to impact an audience.

(Please note, if you submit a standard pitch for a company, concept or cause, you have zero chance of being picked.)

If you’d like to try your hand, here’s what you need to do:

1. Create a one-minute video to indicate your idea for a Full Spectrum presentation, using any of the above techniques or something brand-new. Tell us what you’ll talk about, and then show us how you’ll do it in Full Spectrum style. We’re looking for powerful presentation ideas — the video itself doesn’t need to be polished, it’s only for our internal review. It just needs to give us a sense of you and demonstrate that your presentation could have impact.

2. Upload your video to YouTube or Vimeo.

3. Then fill out this online entry form and give us your details, including a link to the video.

A judging panel will select the most compelling presentation ideas from your video submissions. We’ll invite those finalists to give their Full Spectrum talks live at in New York on May 24, in front of the TED curation team and an invited audience. The actual audition itself will range from 3 to 6 minutes, so you’ll need to pick a subject that can be managed in that time frame.

We’re excited to see what you have to offer!

Important dates:
Deadline for submitting your one-minute video and online entry form: Monday, April 25, 2011, at 11:59pm Eastern time.
Winners will be contacted by Monday, May 9, 2011.
Finalists are responsible for their own travel to New York.
Finalist presentations in New York: Tuesday, May 24, 2011, in the evening. More details TBD.
TED2012: Full Spectrum happens February 27-March 2, 2012, in California.

Questions? Write to fullspectrum@ted.com.

– The TED team

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