Invercargill hosts TEDx experience

TEDxInvercargill Live speakers at Invercargill's Centrestage last Saturday (from left) Giahnnii, Janaya, Michelle, Nic and Ursula. Photo: Supplied

FROM 60 participants at Invercargill’s Centrestage Theatre to thousands around the world, TEDxInvercargill Live co-organiser Leon Hartnett aims to inform, challenge and stimulate conversation about relevant, current and up-to-date topics.

Originally from New York, and already popular in Dunedin and Queenstown, it was Invercargill’s turn to experience TEDx (Technology, Entertainment, Design) last Saturday.

Hosted by Greenlight Innovations, participants saw international prerecorded talks, streamed content and heard an “astonishing group of live speakers create original content in Invercargill, for distribution world-wide via TED”, at the event.

The political and technological turmoil of the past few years had unexpected consequences, which were causing people to ask bigger, deeper, more challenging questions, Mr Hartnett said.

“TEDx was an opportunity to start a journey with like-minded people who were looking for deep meaning.”

However, “owing to Covid and uncertainly about elements of the programme, specifically the international content, Greenlight hosted this as a closed event” this time, he said.

Emceed by local media and entertainment personality Sarah McCarthy, “five live speakers from all over New Zealand and one prerecorded speaker from Pakistan” took part in the morning.

Prerecorded messages in the afternoon came via the TED 2019 International Conference which was held in Vancouver, Canada, which hosted a week of talks, ideas and connections.

Mr Hartnett thanked the sponsors saying, “our sponsors have, in my mind shown a great willingness and openness to new ideas and have been enthusiastic partners with us to create not an event, but rather digital content that is thought-provoking, future-focused, and will represent Invercargill to (we hope) tens of thousands of people worldwide”.

It was hoped future TEDx events would be held.

Mr Hartnett said he aimed to “have the TEDxInvercargill Live talks uploaded in about a month’s time”.

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