This year, after wanting to attend SXSW for so long, I had the chance to visit Austin for the event, and here I will tell you my SXSW review of the overall event and discuss some general things about it. In further articles, I will delve into more details and tips to go to SXSW.
What is SXSW?
SXSW stands for South by Southwest, a multitrack mega event where there´s a convergence of Film, Sports, Music, Design, Intereactive industries in one same space for ten days of talks, discussions, activations, eents, live shows, avant premieres and many things more.
It is held in Austin, which is the Live Music Capital of the United States, and it takes over the city as there ara a hundred thousand people getting to the city for it.
Who is SXSW for?
I could go all out and say “For Everybody!” and I wouldn´t be mistaken, but to try and focus a bit, it is an eevnt for anyone in the Entertainment Industry, wether it´s music, film, interactive, content creation, Sports, Technology; and you don´t have to be the big thing in those industries. It´s a place for every one to find something of interest; ranging from those who are having great success and those struggling with a project or a budding startup. You will find yourself being happy to having attended.
We got credentials for the event on the Film Badge, which allows you to enter every panel and event targeted specifically for the Film Track, and everything included in the Convergence track, which is for all badge types.
Within the Film Track, there were five different subtracks
SXSports: Panels and activities about Sports Industry, with everything from Communications, Marketing, Psycology, Scouting, and lots more. (We spent most of our time on this subtrack, when attending panels)
SXStyle: Fashion, Style, Fashion Bloggers, Vloggers, Igers, What´s next and more.
SXGood: Everything related to Non Profits and Social Change.
SXGaming: Everything related to Videogames and ESports.
South Bites: Activities for Food Bloggers, Chefs, and all about gastronomy.
The rest of the Tracks also had subtracks, but we couldn´t visit them as we had the Film Badge.
The Music Track had tons of live music activities that were open, not only to all badges, but also to anyone who was in Austin and wanted to check them out, with over 200 indy bands filling the scene with tunes.
Any Big Names attending SXSW?
Yes, there are actors and actresses, directors, producers, athletes, rock stars, politicians and business people. Since we were at the Film Track and mostly Sports we met several athletes, including a Superbowl winner, Olympic Gold Medalists, Professional Golfers, Coaches and a full array of stars. There were lots of Film industry icons, such as Richard Linklater and Christian Slater, among dozens more, and ultra interesting people such as NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. Let´s also recall that Barack and Michelle Obama both attended to kick things started at the event.
Is it Worth It to go to SXSW?
Short answer: Yes!
Long answer: You need to be ready. It is tiring, the days are long, and you will probably want to stay for some nighttime activities getting more tired. So make sure to leave room for a couple of days after the event to recuperate, but it is definitely an amazing time and very fullfilling.
Interestingly, the panels are very open to questions, and they tell about their mistakes candidly. You can also stay behind when the panel´s over and keep asking questions and networking. The overall vibe is of a great community of helping each other and networking.
Have you visited SXSW 2016? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section. And if you are planning on going next year, follow me on Twitter or subscribe, as more tips will come soon.