Immersive Stories: Virtual Reality Conference

The final line-up and schedule has been released for the Immersive Stories: Virtual Reality Conference, which takes place at the Round Room in the Mansion House, Dublin 9am-5pm across the 24th & 25th February 2018 as part of the Audi Dublin International Film Festival.

Immersive Stories: Conference

The Immersive Stories Conference brings pioneering international and Irish thought leaders on Virtual and Augmented Reality to Dublin to chart new ways of storytelling on immersive platforms, developments that are already revolutionising the way we produce and consume entertainment.
 
The finalised line-up includes Resh Sidhu, Creative Director of Two Species VR; Ian Bowie, Experience Designer at the ILMxLAB and Lead Designer on STAR WARS: SECRETS OF THE EMPIRE; Curtis Hickman: Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer of critically-acclaimed immersive entertainment company The VOID, Sol Rogers, CEO & Founder, REWIND, Colum Slevin, Head of Experiences at Oculus VR, Andrew Melchior, Founder of 3rd Space Agency and Executive Producer of Björk Digital ; Davor Krvavac, Executive Creative Director at B-Reel London, (creators of the Gorrilaz AR app) and many more. The Immersive Stories Conference and Exhibition is curated by Eoghan Cunneen, a Senior Software Engineer at Lucasfilm Ltd.

Tickets

Immersive Stories: Conference €95/€55 conc
Season Ticket Holder €80

Dear attendees, please note a change in our lineup: Diana Williams is no longer able to attend Immersive Stories at ADIFF. In her place we’re delighted to welcome Ian Bowie, @ILMxLAB lead experience designer and Visual Effects Society Award Nominee. Ian will speak on behalf of ILMxLAB and his incredible work on Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire.

Confirmed speakers include:

Curtis Hickman – Co-Founder, The VOID

Curtis Hickman – Co-Founder, The VOID

Curtis Hickman is a co-founder and Chief Creative Officer at The VOID, the critically acclaimed immersive entertainment company. He has worked has worked for a number of studios and production groups as Head of Motion Graphics and Visual Effects, including Kaleidoscope Studios where he created and directed commercials for Franklin Covey in addition to leading VFX work on music videos for such artists as BB King and Five for Fighting. 

With more than 10 years of experience producing award-winning visual effects and motion graphics for film and television, combined with an obsession with the art of illusion, Curtis's background in digital and practical illusion design has lead to the development of the fundamental technologies behind The VOID.
 
At The VOID, Curtis and the rest of the team layer virtual worlds over physical spaces to create immersive entertainment experiences that engage the senses, bringing consumers closer to stories, characters and places than ever before.

Ian Bowie - Lead Experience Designer, ILMxLAB

Ian Bowie - Lead Experience Designer, ILMxLAB

Ian Bowie is an Experience Designer at the ILMxLAB and Lead Designer on Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire.

He began his career in interactive content making indie games while pursuing his bachelors degree in Multimedia. After earning his Masters degree in Entertainment Technology from Carnegie Mellon, he designed for five and a half years on the Call of Duty: Black Ops video game series at Treyarch before joining the visionary team at ILMxLAB, Lucasfilm's immersive entertainment division founded in 2015.

Colum Slevin – Head of Experiences, Oculus VR

Colum Slevin – Head of Experiences, Oculus VR

Colum Slevin oversees the experiences group for the Oculus VR content team, helping a portfolio of third party developers making 360 video, narrative, and real-time experiences for Mobile VR and Rift.

His early background in production for animated TV and features led him to Industrial Light + Magic, where he was Director of Computer Graphics, and later Vice President/Head of Studio Operations at Lucasfilm, where he was responsible for the animation division in California and Singapore. Colum joined Oculus in 2015 from Telltale Games, where he was Studio General Manager. He is obsessed with movies and, while he can never choose his favorite film, his current favorite quote is from Pulp Fiction: Mia asks “When in conversation, do you listen, or do you just wait to talk?” Vincent thinks about it and then responds, “I wait to talk, but I'm trying to listen.”

Resh Sidhu - Creative Director, AKQA

Resh Sidhu - Creative Director, AKQA

Resh Sidhu is award winning Creative Director at AKQA, based in New York. She is one of the most well-regarded names in Virtual Reality driving the medium forward with her fearless creativity and innovative approach. Her diverse portfolio ranges from mixed reality, digital experiences, global marketing campaigns and product development where she uses unfamiliar mediums to drive forward digital transformation.

Resh joined AKQA from Oscar winning visual effects studio Framestore where, as Creative Director of VR, she led a multi-disciplinary team across a wide client base. She worked on a huge variety of projects for clients including Warner Bros, Universal Studios, HBO, Nickelodeon, Nike and Samsung. Resh’s groundbreaking work on the Fantastic Beasts VR experience for Warner Bros. and J.K. Rowling received critical acclaim and recognition.

Resh was recently awarded Honorary Doctorate from University of Arts London, in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the field of digital, film, animation and advertising. She was named Top 50 creative leader by Creative Review, and voted as one of the World’s Most Creative Women in The Drum earning her the title Queen of VR.

Sol Rogers – CEO & Founder, REWIND

Sol Rogers – CEO & Founder, REWIND

Sol Rogers is CEO and Founder of REWIND, a production agency that fuses bleeding-edge technology with award-winning creative storytelling. Known for pushing the boundaries in innovation content creation, REWIND’s acclaimed immersive projects include BBC Home: A VR Spacewalk, the launch of Jaguar I-PACE and Ghost In The Shell VR.

Sol is a BAFTA VR Advisory Group Executive, Chair of Immerse UK and an advisor to globally recognised conferences. Sol’s passion for VR has led him to set up VRLO; the UK’s most popular VR meetup, and VR Together; a platform to help create VR for good. Prior to founding REWIND, Sol was a university lecturer for 15 years in Digital Animation, VFX & Emerging Technology. Sol is a VR evangelist and prominent international keynote speaker, often quoted in the press and appearing on TV.

Niamh Herrity – Co-Founder, Pink Kong Studios

Niamh Herrity – Co-Founder, Pink Kong Studios

Niamh Herrity is CEO and award-winning Producer at Pink Kong Studios Dublin. Recipient of Entrepreneur of the year 2015 and IBYE finalist 2016 - Niamh's Business background has enabled her to push the studio to new heights.

Since Niamh co-founded Pink Kong in 2014, she has produced award winning content for the Studio including a Bafta winning Game "Virginia" (2016) and award winning short films "Meanwhile on the Train"(2015) and "Urban Tails" (2016).

Niamh most recently produced "Departure" (2017) funded by the I.F.B & R.T.É. The film is currently on the international festival circuit. Niamh also plays an active role within Ireland's animation community holding seats on both the board of both Animation Ireland and Women in Animation Ireland.

Aoife Doyle – Co-Founder, Pink Kong Studios

Aoife Doyle – Co-Founder, Pink Kong Studios

Aoífe Doyle is the creative director and co-founder of Pink Kong Studios based in Dublin, Ireland. Aoífe's background in classical animation led her to work for over a decade in Ireland's booming animation sector before co-founding Pink Kong Studios.

She is the creative driving force of the studio, guiding artists and ensuring the studio adheres to the creative vision. An award-winning Writer/Director, Aoífe’s films have been screened at numerous festivals worldwide.

Aoífe most recent director credits include: 
"Departure" 2017 (Irish Film Board)(SHORT FILM) 
"Urban Tails" 2017 (RTÉ)(SHORT FILM & TV SERIES) 

Angela Dorgan - CEO, First Music Contact

Angela Dorgan - CEO, First Music Contact

Angela Dorgan is the CEO of www.firstmusiccontact.com (FMC), the Arts Council funded national resource organization for musicians which run the Irish Music Export Office, www.musicfromireland.org the online music portal www.breakingtunes.com and the annual music industry showcase Hard Working Class Heroes festival www.hwch.net. FMC also runs the artist income generating Live Music Trails around Dublin and other Irish cities.

Music From Ireland is the Irish Music Export office run by First Music Contact in partnership with Culture Ireland which funds and delivers the Irish showcases at leading international music events. Eurosonic, SXSW, The Great Escape, Primevera, A2IMIndie Week,NYC, Reeperbahn, Mondo NYC, Ireland Week and M for Montreal www.musicfromireland.org Angela has a Masters Degree in Sociology from UCC and believes that Arts and Culture are an essential part of the life of every citizen. Angela has contributed regularly to RTE radio arts show Arena and was briefly a reporter for RTE1 TV’s The Works. Angela is a member of the WH Olgivy Culture Collective http://www.wilsonhartnell.ie/culture-collective/ She is also on the board for the National Campaign for the Arts in Ireland http://ncfa.ie and is a board member of the European Music Exporters Exchange. She also played the drums. Badly. (her words)

Neil Leyden – Head of RTE.ie, RTÉ

Neil Leyden – Head of RTE.ie, RTÉ

Neil is currently Head of RTE.ie, the online arm of the state broadcaster and the number one media website in Ireland.  He has previously worked as a digital media strategist, scriptwriter and entrepreneur. In his role as digital strategist, he has worked with a diverse range of companies including Windmill Lane Pictures, AIB, Intel, Deloitte Media, Worldirish.com and Independent News & Media PLC.

As a scriptwriter he has worked for the BBC, Jam Media, Fiddler’s Green and Brown Bag Films. He previously sat on the boards of the Irish Internet Association (IIA), Broadcasting Authority of Ireland Contracts Committee and was Chairman of the Digital Media Forum, a network of digital media companies in Ireland as well as sitting on the board of a number of tech start-ups, including an early VR venture. In 2011, he was named winner of Your Country, Your Call - a nationwide competition run by Áras an Uachtaráin

Enda Bates - Deputy Director of the Music & Media Technologies TCD

Enda Bates - Deputy Director of the Music & Media Technologies TCD

Enda Bates is a composer, musician, producer and academic based in Dublin, Ireland, and an Assistant Professor and deputy director of the Music and Media Technologies programme in Trinity College Dublin. In 2010 he completed a PhD entitled The Composition & Performance of Spatial Music, while current research interests include spatial music, spatial audio for VR, the aesthetics of electroacoustic music, and the Augmented Electric Guitar. 

He is an active composer of acoustic and electroacoustic contemporary music and scores and other material are available from his page at the Irish Contemporary Music Centre. He is a founder member of the Spatial Music Collective and is an active performer, both of his own work and with The Spook of the Thirteenth Lock, Miriam Ingram, Nina Hynes/Dancing Suns, amongst others. He has also worked as a producer/engineer for a variety of artists and groups such as the Crash Ensemble, Mumbling Deaf Ro, Somadrone, and Conor Walsh.

Niamh Byrne - Co-Founder, Eleven Management

Niamh Byrne - Co-Founder, Eleven Management

Niamh Byrne has decades of music industry experience having started out at CMO Management Ltd in 1995.  During her time here Byrne managed international recording artists such as Jesus & Mary Chain, Blur, Gorillaz, Elastica and Turin Brakes.

Byrne then went on to set up The Engine Room as a Business Consultant for artist campaign strategies focussing on digital marketing and execution.This involved collaborating with Universal Music on music campaigns to protect music rights & with BPI/Brits to develop the new aesthetic around the Brit awards and subsequent trophy designs.

Byrne then put the experience accrued in both roles to work with Universal Music to create artist campaigns, pan industry initiatives, strategy and execution of ideas and content development.

In 2011, Byrne and her business partner Régine Moylett founded Eleven Management. From the outset, Eleven has been an artist-lead business, working to foster innovation, intelligence, care and attention to detail for its eclectic roster which currently includes Damon Albarn, Blur, Graham Coxon, Gorillaz, GSS, Electric Wave Bureau, The Clash, The Good The Bad & The Queen, Remi Kabaka, Róisín Murphy and Kano (the latter in partnership with Richard Thomas).

The first 7 years of Eleven’s existence have been characteristically productive, overseeing two theatre productions - Dr Dee at the ENO and Wonder.land at The National Theatre – and two award winning catalogue campaigns - Blur:21 and The Clash Soundsystem.  During this time Eleven has also facilitated Blur’s first album in 12 years, their most successful to date and a new Gorillaz record which has thus far collected a slew of awards. There has also being a new record from Roisin Murphy and from Kano, a new Gorillaz-curated festival, Demon Dayz, and G-foot the new Gorillaz clothing line.

Davor Krvavac - Executive Creative Director, B-Reel

Davor Krvavac - Executive Creative Director, B-Reel

Davor Krvavac is the Executive Creative Director at B-Reel London. A multi-award winning Creative Director, Davor brings expertise of working with major global brands and icons such as Gorillaz, Nike, Converse, LVMH, LinkedIn, Google and Pernod Ricard. Most recently he led a team that designed, developed and delivered the ground-breaking, mixed reality Gorillaz App.

When not herding kittens and screaming at his screen at B-Reel, Davor makes obscure music, writes screenplays and falls off various wheeled devices.

Prior to taking the helm at B-Reel, Davor was a Group Creative Director at AKQA London. In his eight and a half years at AKQA, Davor has developed and led a wide range of campaigns and IP across the global Nike business. He led the Nike Football global account for 4 years during which time he delivered several Nike Football milestones including the multi-award winning Nike The Chance, 2014 World Cup campaign, and launching the Nike Football App.

In total he amassed over 40 industry awards including a Gold Cannes Lion, 2 silver Cannes Lions, Grand Clio, 4 Gold Clio awards, 5 BIMA awards for the Gorillaz App. Previously Davor holds 3 Cyber Lions along with 1 Grand Prix and 20+ Gold Awards from FWA, New York Festival, LIA, Revolution, BIMA, OMMA, Creativity, IAB, MMA, & Contagious amongst others. His work contributed to 7 Agency of Year Awards.

“My aim has always been to push technology and create culturally relevant work that real people give a toss about.”

Andrew Melchior - Founder, 3rd Space Agency

Andrew Melchior - Founder, 3rd Space Agency

Andrew Melchior was executive producer for Björk Digital at New York’s Museum of Modern Art (MOMA). Björk Digital is a collection of immersive installations and virtual reality experiences that accompanied her 2015 record, Vulnicura.

Melchior was recently appointed as CTO at Massive Attack, with whom he had previously collaborated with on the sensory music player, Fantom. The Fantom application remixes four exclusive Massive Attack tracks based on motion data from the users’ phone, images from the camera, or the listeners heart-rate, creating a unique remix of the track that the listener can record and share.

Melchior previously collaborated with mixed reality startup Magic Leap and EMI Record Ltd.

Catherine Allen - VR Curator and Founder of Limina Immersive

Catherine Allen - VR Curator and Founder of Limina Immersive

Catherine led the creation of two of the BBC's first VR experiences and now curates VR for the UK's leading arts venues with her company, Limina Immersive. Her work is known for bringing VR to broader audiences who wouldn't describe themselves as early adopters. She is part of the BAFTA VR advisory team and has judged VR for Sheffield Doc Fest, Encounters and Raindance film festivals.

Catherine produced the BBC’s first commissioned VR documentary, the award-winning Easter Rising: Voice of a Rebel, which has toured festivals globally, showed for six weeks at the National Theatre in London and was described by Broadcast Magazine as 'genre-defining'. In her spare time she writes for Wired magazine and sees a lot of theatre. Before VR, Catherine worked at the educational app publisher, Touch Press; winning a BAFTA on the Disney Animated app, with Disney Interactive.

Keith Lawler - Co-Founder of www.firstage.com

Keith Lawler - Co-Founder of www.firstage.com

As a former professional touring artist and Creative Director in the advertising industry, Keith’s unique experience positions me perfectly for my role at Firstage. He’s toured with acts like Fugazi, Dinosaur Jr, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Deftones and Rocket from the Crypt and released 3 critically acclaimed albums.

As an adman, Keith’s created award winning work for Saatchi & Saatchi, TBWA and the Start Group on brands such as Heineken, PlayStation, Jumeriah, Adidas and Etihad and many more.

Keith is a freelance creative consultant and has helped such agencies as Boys & Girls, DDFH&B, The Company of Huskies, Brando and Target McConnells create work for brands such as Lotto, Eir, Redbreast, Club Orange, Aer Lingus, Nissan, Meteor and Vodafone Rugby.

Keith’s passionate about new technologies and committed to helping artists earn more money.

Denis Ryan – Writer, Pink Kong Studios

Denis Ryan – Writer, Pink Kong Studios

After forging an academic background in screenwriting, (an MA Screenwriting from the Huston School of Film in Galway), Denis's narrative pursuits led him to the field of video game writing and narrative design - working predominantly in mobile gaming and immersive storytelling.

Alongside his experience in Narrative Design, he has worked on many animation projects at various phases as well as writing kid-friendly content for a Minecraft-based YouTube channel.

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