So much goes into a TEDx event behind the scenes – much more than you might be able to imagine. Everything has to be just right for the big day, and the volunteers who pour their energy into such an event for free are often outstanding professionals in their own fields. Other volunteers that come together on the weekend of the event are local high school and university students as well as members of the TEDxKyoto community from all around the country. All of these volunteers give their hard work and technical expertise. They participate in TEDxKyoto because they believe in what it represents, and the community that has grown up around these events is a creative and positive collection of the best that our area has to offer.
As this piece is being written from the sound booth overlooking our venue, there are people down below literally rolling out the red carpet, others working on the screens ad projectors that will bring the speakers and performers’ contributions to life, and countless young people in the neighboring rooms making signs, preparing for the reception and after party, and sorting out the nametags of all who will participate tomorrow. Teams are preparing the tables, decorating the foyer, and arranging beanbags in the casual ‘hang out space’ just outside the main hall. Nothing is left to chance. Coaches are helping the speakers put the finishing touches on their slides and delivery, and every microphone and camera is checked and double-checked. The sound has to be perfect; the lighting has to look great. If these elements are just right, no one will notice them, and that is the production goal.
After being involved in TEDxKyoto for over four years, it is inspiring to see how much the people involved have grown and evolved during that time. They really know what they are doing, and they know how to put together a day like this so that everyone involved gets the most out of the experience. Many of the core team members started out, as I did, by coming to an event and experiencing the excitement and energy of the speakers, participants, and ideas gathered together. There are those, too, who can enjoy TEDxKyoto virtually; from the livestream video on the day, via our social media posts, from our archive on the website, and from watching the speakers online on other outlets. Our speakers truly reach a worldwide audience, thanks to the tireless efforts of a large number of people who carry, spread, deliver, and translate the message.