Entertainment

Tulsa expands presence at 2020 South by Southwest festival

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Music performer Branjae Jackson | Courtesy of ISA-B Photography 

Published 03/05/2020 | Reading Time 2 min 21 sec 

TULSA, Okla. – Tulsa will have an expanded presence at the 2020 South by Southwest (SXSW) Festivals & Conference, the world’s largest annual gathering of creative professionals. In addition to two music events on March 19, Tulsa will return to the SXSW trade show March 15-18 with a focus on innovation.

With support from the George Kaiser Family Foundation (GKFF), the trade show booth will feature Tulsa Remote; Tulsa Innovation Labs; Holberton School; Atento Capital; Gathering Place; the Tulsa Regional Chamber; and the Tulsa Office of Film, Music, Arts & Culture (Tulsa FMAC).

“A key goal of Tulsa Remote is to expose the exciting things happening in Tulsa to a larger audience, which is why a Tulsa innovation-focused booth at SXSW is a clear priority,” says Tulsa Remove Executive Director Aaron Bolzle. “We’re excited to collaborate with Tulsa FMAC and various Tulsa-based organizations. SXSW attracts creative professionals from around the world, and we will be there to share Tulsa’s story and opportunities.”

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Tulsa’s signature event at SXSW once again be the Tulsa Music Showcase, to be held the evening of March 19 at Augustine on Rainey Street. Tulsa is one of only four cities with an official music showcase. Headlining the fourth annual Tulsa Music Showcase will once again be SXSW-favorite BRONCHO, a Tulsa-based indie rock band. The showcase will also feature Casii StephanBranjaePaul BenjamanLABRYS, and Zach Winters.

Immediately before the showcase will be Tulsa Boom Factory, an official SXSW day party. Tulsa Boom Factory will feature CLIFFDIVERSteph Simon, AyillaBrad James Band and Faye Moffett. Scott Stulen, president and CEO of Philbrook, will kick off Tulsa Boom Factory with a DJ session. The event will also feature an 80th-anniversary celebration of Woody Guthrie’s “This Land is Your Land” led by Paul Benjaman.

“I performed at the first Tulsa SXSW event in 2015 and then again in 2018,” says Benjaman. “To return as a showcasing artist this year is really cool. The energy, friendship and support of Tulsa music in Austin is solid. I’m also honored to lead the celebration performance of Woody Guthrie’s ‘This Land is Your Land.’ We’re celebrating its 80th year, and yet every word of the song carries relevance to our current times.” 

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“I’m proud to represent Tulsa’s music scene,” says hip-hop artist Ayilla. “When I released my first EP late last year, I received tons of support in this city. That what makes Tulsa special. I look forward to being on the stage for the first time at SXSW.”  

Tulsa’s presence at SXSW is coordinated annually by Tulsa FMAC, an accredited film commission housed at the Tulsa Regional Chamber under the regional tourism division.

“With more than 75 people traveling to SXSW this year, we’re beyond pleased to see Tulsa’s presence grow,” says Tulsa FMAC Executive Director Abby Kurin. “Promoting Tulsa’s incredible music and startup scenes allows us to expand our footprint in Austin. Adding the trade show booth to our official music events means we’re able to cover more ground and convince more people why they should choose Tulsa.”

In addition to Tulsa FMAC, sponsors of Tulsa at SXSW are GKFF, BOK Center, LUXA Enterprises, Philbrook Museum of Art, Woody Guthrie Center, Billie and Howard Barnett, the Tulsa Regional Chamber, Hyatt Regency Tulsa and Webb Branding. Additional community support is provided by The Church Studio, OKPOP, Adam Murphy Photography and Intent Productions.


For more information about the musicians representing Tulsa at SXSW, visit tulsamusic.com. For more information about South by Southwest, which runs March 13-22, visit sxsw.com.

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