ATX EMERGE Brings Austin Film and Music Talent as Well as Record Breaking Crowds to The Mohawk

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The second annual ATX EMERGE, a networking and showcase event organized by the Integrated Media Community (IMC), helped feature local creative talent and their services and work during SXSW film on March 14, 2009. The event drew 2,500 attendees to The Mohawk for nine local bands and a digital showcase featuring Austin filmmakers and producers.

During a week when Austin was swarming with visiting entertainment and SXSW attendees, ATX EMERGE, a networking and showcase event organized by the Integrated Media Community (IMC), helped feature local creative talent and their services and work. The IMC is a group of Austin-based film, music, interactive and arts professionals working to create a sustainable media economy in Austin. Taking place the weekend of SXSW Film, the second annual ATX EMERGE event showcased Austin arts and media talent.

The event was hosted on March 14 at one of Austin's favorite music venues, The Mohawk. Austin bands and a digital showcase drew approximately 2,500 attendees, a record night for the venue.

Nine local bands provided entertainment and demonstrated why Austin is considered the Live Music Capital of the World. Belaire, Brazos, Foot Patrol, Freshmillions, Harlem, Sunset, The White White Lights, Ume and Zeale performed on alternating indoor/outdoor stages, with DJ Blissom spinning in between acts and at the end of the night. The lineup of musicians impressed director Nathan Christ so much that he and his team were on location to shoot footage for "Echotone" an anthropological exploration of the intersection between art and commerce, and the collective reverberations impacting Austin's indie music community.

The work of Austin filmmakers and producers was featured at a digital showcase in the Modia Media Room. The showcase included a David Byrne music video directed by Jason Archer, Voodoo Highway and Swatch Post reels, and a Striated Interlude music video for artist Bill Baird, directed by Peter Simonite.

Sponsored by Maker's Mark, LoveSac, Freeman Film, KVRX Radio, Decider Austin, IndiePix, Pixel Mine and Transmission Entertainment, the event provided a platform for Austinites and industry executives to mingle and network with other attendees.

"ATX EMERGE attracted Los Angeles and New York filmmakers who value Austin's creative community," said Victor Moyers one of the event's producers and chief development officer at Reversal Films. "It reinforced existing connections among Austin film talent and strengthened ties with stakeholders outside of Austin - Maker's Mark is a great networking tool."

Filmmakers who attended the event include past Austin Film Festival award winner Gaby Yepes; Nadie Gamez, whose film "Love, Sadie" was a 2009 SXSW Film selection; Keith Maitland whose disability documentary "The Eyes of Me" world premiered at SXSW 2009 and screens in competition at AFI Dallas this week; and members of the "Skateland" team including Brandon Freeman (executive producer/writer), Heath Freeman (producer/actor/writer) and Anthony Burns (writer/director). Representatives of Google, Vice, EMI/Capital Records, GSD&M, CBS, AT&T, ITUNES, C3 Presents and Fuze were also among those in attendance.

Plans for the second annual ATX CONVERGE, which focuses on networking and development within Austin, are already in the works. Celebrating Austin's artistic independence and evolving cultural experience, the September 2009 ATX CONVERGE will feature local musicians, filmmakers and artists.

ATX EMERGE is the third in a series of events supporting Austin's independent film and media community. The first event was ATX EMERGE 2008, which also focused on showcasing Austin's talent to national audiences; the second was ATX CONVERGE 2008, an opportunity for locals to network and celebrate their collective independence. The members of the Integrated Media Community (IMC) and organizing partners of ATX EMERGE are City on Fire, Giant Media, Indierect Music Incubator, Launchpad Creative, Reversal Films, Self-Assembly Films, Swatch Post, and Voodoo Highway Music and Post. Hailing from Austin's creative community, ATX EMERGE organizers draw from a wide network of contacts and media-related expertise.

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Nick Jayant
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