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TED2013 Worldwide Auditions

More than half of the speakers at TED2013 will be selected through an ambitious experiment in crowdsourcing: the TED Worldwide Auditions.
TEDx | 14.02.2012
From April to June 2012, TED will hold public auditions in 14 cities on six continents seeking to uncover new talents, voices and ideas the world needs to hear. The entire TED community will have a chance to vote on the most promising presenters. And many of these will be invited to join us as speakers at TED2013. In fact, at least half of our program will be chosen this way ...

Where and when will the auditions be held?
We have confirmed events in Amsterdam, Bangalore, Doha, Johannesburg, London, Nairobi, New York, São Paulo, Seoul, Shanghai, Sydney, Tokyo, Tunis and Vancouver -- between April and June. In each city, we are working with local TEDx organizers who have demonstrated their ability to put on powerful events. The first audition will be held in April 2012 in Doha, as part of the TEDxSummit.

What is the process to audition?
There will be an online application process, which will open separately for each city, at least two months before each audition. Applicants will be encouraged to include a short video of themselves. We will be inviting around 30 of the best applicants to each audition. Applicants can apply to their nearest city even if they are from a different country. In some exceptional cases we will contribute to costs of attending the audition. Auditions will be 3-6 minutes long, and the language will be English.

Who are we looking for?
Anyone can apply to audition, so long as you have not spoken at a TED Conference, TEDGlobal or TEDActive, and do not have a talk posted on We're especially looking for:

- THE INVENTOR ... sharing an innovation with world-changing potential
- THE TEACHER ... sharing valuable knowledge in a memorable way to teenagers or adults
- THE PRODIGY ... young talent ready to break out
- THE ARTIST ... who can showcase their work in a compelling, new way (Don't just talk about it. Show us your work!)
- THE PERFORMER ... music, dance, comedy, drama ... or something entirely different
- THE SAGE ... wisdom the world needs from those who have learned it the hard way
- THE ENTHUSIAST ... with an infectious passion about a topic they can share
- THE CHANGE AGENT ... helping shape the world's future with work that matters
- THE STORYTELLER ... vivid, original, meaningful ... with a talent for connection
- THE SPARK ... with a powerful idea worth spreading

Who aren't we looking for?
Product-hawkers, jargon-junkies, dullards, wafflers, motivator wannabes, self-promoters, spouters of new-age fluff.

As noted above, speakers who have a talk listed on, or who have been invited to speak at a TED Conference, TEDGlobal, or TEDActive -- are not eligible. (We love you, but this is about undiscovered talent.)

How are winners selected?
After all the auditions have been held, we will post video of all the presenters on a special area of our site. You and other members of the public will have a chance to vote for the ones you think are best. We will then tailor our program from the top 50. Successful candidates will have the chance to deliver a longer talk or performance at TED2013 and we will offer coaching and AV support as needed. We will cover speakers' travel to Long Beach, California, and their accommodation for the entire conference.
About the author: TEDx