All-star speakers at Global Mixx Music & Film Forum


Aaliyah Williams, the head of Russell Simmons’ new YouTube network, All Def Digital, is one of 15 all-stars speaking at the 8th annual Global Mixx Music and Film Forum Aug. 16-17, at Cinespace and the Zhou B. Art Center.

The panelists and workshop leaders come from all aspects of music and entertainment to inform an expected audience of 300 for Saturday’s Film Forum and 800 for Sunday’s Music Forum, says Global Mixx founder Mary Datcher.

This year Global Mixx is partnering with ParentPowerChicago, a non-profit that promotes parent involvement in children’s education. On Sunday, Parent Power will host its own series of workshops at the Zhou B. Art Center.

“When ParentPowerChicago approached us, we thought it would be a great partnership, since each year our youth participation grows,” says Datcher, a veteran urban music and brand marketing expert who started the conference in 2005.

“The music and entertainment industries have always attracted young talent,” says Datcher, “but it’s essential that parents are also educated on the business aspect of the industry, which is one of the things our panels and workshops hope to achieve.”

The Saturday Film Forum panels, starting at 10 a.m. at Cinespace, feature two workshops and a roundtable discussion. A vendors expo will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Sunday’s Music Forum, starting at 11 a.m., held on the first floor of the Zhou B. Art Center, presents three panels and features keynote speaker, Global Mixx’ honorary music chair, NO I.D., EVP/ DefJam Recordings and Grammy award winning producer (Kanye West, Common, Jay-Z).

The day concludes with a reception and indie music showcase.

Saturday’s panels, workshops and guest speakers

Aaliyah Williams, VP/development/production, All Def Digital; Sanicole Young, writer/director, “The City Hates Us” web series; Maurice Dortch, filmmaker, Maxim 13:22 Productions;

Kenneth Yoder, writer/director/web series development; Nate Gilbert, sales director, Interactive One; Whiteboy James, writer/creator “Block Diaries” web aeries

So You Think You Can Act? Tips to being a Successful Working Actor: Jaime Henderson, agent, BMG Talent Agency; Kathy Byrne, director, TV/theatrical, SAG/AFTRA Chicago; Erica Hubbard, actress, BET’s “Let’s Stay Together” and Jamaal Buchanan,manager, Buchanan Management & Consulting, LLC

The Reel Deal: Careers in Film & Television Roundtable: Carlos King, EP/Kingdom Reign Entertainment (“Real Housewives of Atlanta”); Christopher Nolen, director, Nferno Productions (“72 Hours”); Robin Thede, comedy writer/actress (“Queen Latifah Show”); Delvin Molden, producer, E.N.D. Productions and Emile Cambry, filmmaker/producer, Blue 1647 Productions.

Tickets: Saturday’s Film Forum day passes online for $20. Sunday’s Music Forum, $50, VIP weekend pass, $70 in advance. To “purchase a badge”, click here

Freelance writer Amber Robbin is the creator of Tumbleweed Diaries and writes for Hello Fearless, an online school for aspiring women entrepreneurs. Email