Playing a Violin Outside the Box

Geoffrey Castle aims to shatter people’s preconceived notions of what is possible on a violin.

With a strong interest in community outreach, Castle is thrilled to give back through performances at schools from kindergarten to college. When playing for schools, Castle loves inspiring kids— first to pick up a stringed instrument, and then to learn to “play outside the box”.


Everyone has a song - welcoming refugees through music

What started as a place to sing became a refuge.

Founded by Erin Guinup, just as the U.S. was closing its borders to citizens from select countries, the Tacoma Refugee Choir was determined to turn its musical practice into a celebration of human connection by welcoming voices from around the world. The Choir has created an original song to showcase the idea that it takes diversity to create true harmony. Featuring vocals by Wanz, QDot and Stephanie Anne Johnson.


Creating purposeful wonder

Inspired by the view through his first telescope of a fuzzy, but awe-inducing glimpse of Saturn, entrepreneur Jim Haven was spellbound by wonder.

He is now creating ways to discover and share that sense of wonder with others. Haven’s message to all of us is look up and wonder. A lifelong daydreamer and former advertising creative, Jim learned from some of the most creative people in the business before forming a creative agency in Seattle and London. It was this relationship with creativity that inspired him to change careers and a chance encounter with Saturn that has sparked his present endeavor. Jim has turned his focus skyward, co-founding Look Up where he serves as Wondernaut and Executive Director. Look Up explores the power of wonder through art, science, and space. The organization is creating collaborative experiences designed to incite wonder.


Virtual reality can be a powerful tool for understanding each other

Virtual Reality is a work in progress, says Sandy Cioffi, and she outlines exciting ways VR is being used to experience "the other," to virtually "walk in someone else’s shoes."

Artists as using immersive media, to create new narratives that would allow you to put on a high-tech headset and feel what it’s like to float down the Amazon river, experience life as a different gender, or scatter in the wake of destruction on a Syrian street. With examples of some of the most exciting work going on in this new media, Sandy argues that VR can provide a seismically new way to understand ourselves and, in the end, give us a greater understanding of what it is to be human. Sandy Cioffi was the Director of SIFFX, the Seattle film festival's celebration of virtual reality and immersive filmmaking and is currently director of the New Media and Virtual Reality X Fair coming in 2018. As a filmmaker, Sandy has worked with human rights organizations in global hot zones and has worked extensively with Hate Free Zone (now One America) producing films about treatment of immigrants post-September 11th. In 2005-2008, Sandy traveled to the volatile Niger Delta in Nigeria to film "Sweet Crude," documenting conditions and interviewing the region’s key stakeholders, including leadership of the armed resistance movement. She has been active in political advocacy for the Delta’s people, appealing to media, U.S. legislators, international diplomats, and NGOs. Sandy has worked as an artist-in-residence at many middle and high schools in Washington State and through the mentor/apprentice film program at the Langston Hughes Cultural Arts Center. She was the founder and Director/Chair of Film + Media at Cornish College of the Arts. Currently, Sandy is directing a non-fiction media project with CREA, a feminist human rights organization. She is the co-founder and Creative Director of the start-up fearless360º creating immersive media and education events around the world. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.