This Spartan Life: Frag Me Gently
Acclaimed “talk show in game space” This Spartan Life will conduct live interviews “under fire” in the videogame Halo, projected on the screen before the audience. Dodging virtual bullets in the mixed reality of SXSW & Halo, This Spartan Life’s creator & producer, Chris Burke & Josephine Dorado, along with Paul Marino, Lead Cinematic Designer at BioWare, will present ideas on extending game culture, filmmaking, DIY media & the importance of play. They’ll do their best to keep their guests safe from plasma rifle-wielding aliens. How will they fare? See for yourself. Using Halo as its backdrop, the show began as an underground sensation and has since scored glowing reviews in Wired Magazine, the BBC, BusinessWeek & BoingBoing. Described by Wired Magazine as “a mash-up of The Charlie Rose Show & Doom,” TSL combines high-brow interviews with the likes of the late Sex Pistols manager, Malcolm McLaren & the rock band OK Go with the frag-fest of videogame culture. www.thisspartanlife.com
Director Chris Burke graduated from NYU Film School and went on to work on-set with directors such Robert Altman and Lucio Fulci. Working as a composer, he has scored six independent feature films and had three CDs and several digital releases of original music. In the 1990s, Chris started Bong + Dern, Inc., creating interactive audio projects for Bjork, MTV and others. In late 2004 Chris created This Spartan Life. A talk show in “game space”, This Spartan Life uses Xbox Live and the videogame Halo as its backdrop and has been lauded for its brilliant combination of traditional filmmaking with the creative, interactive possibilities of videogame technology. Guests have included Malcolm McLaren, McKenzie Wark, game designer Katie Salen, the rock band OK Go, Kurt Andersen and many others. This Spartan Life has attracted the attention of countless mainstream media outlets, including Wired Magazine, who likened it to "a mash-up of The Charlie Rose Show and Doom," The BBC, Reuters, Stuff Magazine, and BusinessWeek, and won Best Machinima Series at the 2005 and 2008 Machinima Festivals. This Spartan Life has also created exclusive online content for Spike TV’s Videogame Awards, and as well as a spin-off series for Halo Waypoint on XBox Live.
Josephine Dorado is a social entrepreneur, educator, interactive events producer and skydiver. In her work, she explores the extension of the performance environment with technology and the process of cultural exchange through creative interplay in virtual spaces. She was a Fulbright scholarship recipient and initiated the Kidz Connect program, which connects youth internationally via creative collaboration and theatrical performance in virtual worlds. Josephine also received a MacArthur Foundation award to co-found Fractor.org, which matches news with opportunities for activism. She currently teaches at the New School and is the live events producer for This Spartan Life, a talk show inside the video game Halo. Commissioned performances include interdisciplinary productions for the ISEA and Romaeuropa Festivals as well as speaking engagements at SIGGRAPH, PICNIC (Amsterdam), Queen’s University (Belfast), and London Knowledge Lab. Upcoming ventures include reACTor, a location-based mobile gaming app that connects news with social action, as well as ongoing projects in mixed reality and networked performance. Josephine’s experience ranges from theater for at-risk children to technology and design, and brings perspectives on theater-inspired collaborative methodologies as well as the issues of working within a virtual context. http://about.me/funksoup Twitter: @funksoup
Paul Marino is Lead Cinematic Designer at BioWare Austin (Star Wars: The Old Republic) and was previously part of the Mass Effect 1 & 2 cinematic design teams at BioWare's Edmonton studio. Prior to joining BioWare, Paul was involved with the practice of filmmaking using game technologies, also known as machinima. He contributed to a number of productions, including co-creating the pioneer machinima team, The ILL Clan, as well as projects with MTV, Spike TV, The Independent Film Channel and Rooster Teeth Productions. Paul authored the first book on machinima (3D Game-based Filmmaking: The Art of Machinima, Paraglyph Press, 2004) and co-founded the Academy of Machinima Arts and Sciences (AMAS), producers of the Machinima Film Festival from 2002 to 2008. As a part of AMAS, Paul has spoken widely about machinima, with presentations at Harvard Law School, SF-MoMA, The Australian Centre for the Moving Image (Melbourne), the Edinborough Fringe Fest, the FMX Animation Festival (Stuttgart) and Ars Electronica (Vienna). Earlier in his career, Paul was involved with designing creative for Rollingstone.com & MP3.com, ad agencies Ogilvy & Mather and BBDO, as well as for broadcast television, where he won Telly and Emmy Awards for his work with Turner Broadcasting.