Panel Spotlight: “Turning Fandom into Fame”

“Turning Fandom into Fame”

When someone asks “What was your inspiration for your art?” you dont always expect the answer “Geek Love!”  But in this era where anyone with a blog can become just as powerful as the mainstream press, and anyone with a youtube channel can be a celebrity, finding your audience can be as simple as “liking” the Star Wars page on Facebook.This panel seeks to look at this phenomenon, where geek “obsession” fuels, inspires and enables artistic creation.

This panel features:
Gam3rs: the Play
Brian Bielawski (Writer/Performer)
Walter G Meyer (Writer/Director)
Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog – LIVE
Andy Lowe (Director/Producer/Adaptation)
Brian Hammond (Musical Director)
Jane Lui (Cast, and YouTube Personality in her own right)
The Eben Brooks Band
Eben Brooks (Singer / Songwriter / Musician)

GAM3RS:THE PLAY
Brian Bielawski (co-creator, co-writer, performer) has been a professional actor for 12 years with his master’s degree from the Tony Award winning Old Globe Theatre.  In 2005 he created GAM3RS /the play with Walter G. Meyer and was invited to perform at New York’s International Fringe Festival, MIT, the New England Institute of Art, and other venues nationwide.  In 2007 he voiced numerous characters for X-Box 360’s Saint’s Row II.  Film and TV credits include a recurring role on CBS’ s Guiding Light and the indie title Felix Culpa.  Off-Broadway he performed with Manhattan Theatre Club and Theatre By the Blind.   He is a member of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists and Actors’ Equity Association.  He comes from a family of gamers in Naperville, IL.
Walter G. Meyer (co-creator, co-writer, co-producer) has written three published books, his most recent novel, Rounding Third, has been nominated for a Lambda Literary Award and is receiving rave reviews. For more than twenty years he has been a professional writer and his work has appeared in dozens of newspapers and magazines including the L.A. Times and Kiplinger’s. Several of his screenplays have been optioned by Hollywood producers. He has also produced and directed videos for music, political campaigns and has worked on web series, television series and independent movies.  He has a degree from the School of Communications at Penn State.
DR. HORRIBLE

Andy Lowe winner of the California Young Playwrights(1994), Co-founder and Producing Artistic Director of the San Diego Asian American Repertory Theatre(‘95-’05).  Co-developed San Diego’s first Asian Pacific Islander American Heritage Month Festival (‘01-’03), received an official mayoral commendation, and was recognized as one of the “Top 30 most influential Asian Americans Under the age of 30″ (Political Circus Magazine ‘01).
Andy is currently employed with the La Jolla Playhouse where he serves as the Theatre in Residence Program Coordinator, and continues to independently develop events and theatrical projects through ChinesePirateProductions.com including DR. HORRIBLE’S SING ALONG BLOG -LIVE- (www.IWantToSingAlong.com) and www.Gam3rCon.com.
Brian Hammond’s performance credits include roles at the San Diego Rep, Sea World, Legoland and Starlight, as well as touring nationally and internationally with VEE Entertainment’s Dragontales Live!. He has musical directed numerous productions, received the 2008 Aubrey Award for Best Musical Direction, and has held teaching positions with the Coronado School of the Arts and Young Audiences of San Diego. He is currently a Teaching Artist for the La Jolla Playhouse and the Old Globe.
Jane Lui is a singer/songwriter, who is classically trained in piano and voice.  Having toured US East & West coasts, Canada, Sydney (AU), London (UK). Her cultural and musical influences have produced a sound that has critics eliciting such names as Joni Mitchell, Fiona Apple, Cat Power, and Rufus Wainwright. She has opened for performers such as Vienna Teng, Jay Nash, Jim Bianco, Kate Earl, Tom Brousseau and Jason Mraz.  She recently developed a following through YouTube, where she produces music with post-production videos to show her work as an arranger and multi-instrumentalist.  In 2009 she was featured as YouTube’s Unsigned Pick with over 1.5 Million views. Her second record, Barkentine, was Best Recording Nominee in the San Diego Music Awards 2008. Over $11,600 was raised directly from fans to fund her most recently released album, Goodnight Company. This is her first time acting, and is really excited to share her geeky-Whedon-Fan side.  http://JaneLui.com
Eben Brooks is a singer/songwriter, the frontman for The Eben Brooks Band, and “The Working Class Superhero of San Diego”.  And, as the lyricist/performer of the parody song “Hey There Cthulhu”, he is something of a YouTube sensation. He is also the originator and organizer of the Heroes Against Hunger Concert Series in support of the San Diego Food Bank.
In addition to the above, he is also a writer and a photographer. Most of all, he is a lover of life, and he hopes that his music conveys that love to everyone who listens.

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