State of the Arts 2021


James Hood (Panelist)

Composer, Musician

James Hood is renowned as a vital and versatile musical pioneer. His lengthy and varied musical resumé includes playing drums in The Pretenders, an ongoing two-decades-plus run as mastermind of the visionary ambient/electronica act Moodswings, and an expansive array of production and soundtrack projects. 

In 2014, James launched the album Ceremony, an exploration of a uniquely mesmeric melodic instrument – the PanArt Hang. The “sonic incense” of this recording spoke to fans of ambient artists such as Brian Eno, Phillip Glass and those seeking a peaceful time-slowing soundtrack. Ceremony was a resounding success, introducing tens of thousands of listeners to a compelling sonic experience, and reaching #1 on World and New Age charts in US and Canada.  James repeated that success once again with the release of Pure Ceremony in 2015.

The story now continues with the global release of James third album, Mesmerica.  This new two disc album finds James further deepening his sonic explorations, adding additional instrumentation and rhythmic textures to his now signature soundscapes.  

Screen Shot 2018-12-20 at 3.21.42 PM

Rissi (Panelist)

Dancer, Founder SOKAMBA

Rissi has a deep passion for developing experiences which bring people joy. She strives to create safe spaces which liberate self-expression as a channel for communication across diverse communities. In 2012, Rissi founded the Los Angeles based SOKAMBA Performing Arts Company with the mission to foster roots of unity through the inclusive spirit of the arts.

Part German and part Native American, Rissi was raised in a creative home as one of five daughters who all grew up dancing. During her young life, Rissi trained in classical ballet and twice received Exceptional Distinction under the Royal Academy of Dance, placed within the top 10 performances of the World Tap Championship and became the South-German track team champion. At age 15, she moved to New York City to attend the Fame School – LaGuardia High School of the Performing Arts – where she was honored with the Father Fame award for Excellence in Academics & Dance and graduated with an Advanced Regents Diploma in Math and Science.

Rissi has been grateful to enjoy a dance career which has led her from cities across Europe to New York and Los Angeles, working with artists such as James Taylor, The Plain White T’s, Pink Floyd, Jodie Gates, Bradley Rapier and Meredith Monk; performing in projects such as the TV pilot Leaps and Bounds, the UN World-Peace-Day video Secret Weapon, the LA Fashion Week and the modern adaption of Opera Virtutum. Rissi completed her studies at the University of Southern California as a recipient of the POSSE Full Tuition Leadership Scholarship and since has led a series of Initiatives in community building through the arts.

Jerome Glenn (Virtual Panelist)

Futurist, Author, Founder and Executive Director, The Millennium Project

Screen Shot 2018-12-25 at 2.50.39 PM

Jerome C. Glenn is the co-founder (1996) and CEO of The Millennium Project (on global futures research) and lead-author with Elizabeth Florescu, and The Millennium Project Team of the State of the Future reports of the Millennium Project for the past twenty years. He was the Washington, DC representative for the United Nations University as executive director of the American Council for the UNU 1988-2007.

He has over 40 years of Futures Research experience working for governments, international organizations, and private industry in Science & Technology Policy, Environmental Security, Economics, Education, Defense, Space, Futures Research Methodology, International Telecommunications, and Decision Support Systems with the Committee for the Future, Hudson Institute, Future Options Room, and the Millennium Project. He has addressed or keynoted conferences for over 300 government departments, universities, NGOs, UN organizations, and/or corporations around the world on a variety of future-oriented topics.

Recent research includes: Future Work/Technology 2050, Future Elements of the Next Global Economy, National Collective Intelligence System for Egypt, National Future Strategy Units, Global Energy Scenarios for 2020, the Future of Ethics, 2025 Science and Technology Scenarios, and Middle East Peace Scenarios. Glenn was the Deputy Director of Partnership for Productivity International, involved in national strategic planning, institutional design, training, and evaluation in economic development in Africa, the Middle East, Asia, the Caribbean, and Latin America, and created CARINET in 1983 as the leading computer network in the developing world (subsequently bought by CGNet.) He has been an independent consultant for the World Bank, UNDP, UNU, UNESCO, FAO, UNEP, US/EPA, USAID, and several governments and corporations.

Jerome C. Glenn invented the “Futures Wheel” — a futures assessment technique, Futuristic Curriculum Development, and concepts such as conscious-technology, transinstutions, tele-nations, management by understanding, definition of environmental security, feminine brain drain, just-in-time knowledge and learning, information warfare, feelysis, nodes as a management concept for interconnecting global and local views and actions, and coined the term futuring in 1973. Saturday Review named him among the most unusually gifted leaders of America for his pioneering work in Tropical Medicine (national Leprosy system while a Peace Corp Volunteer), Future-Oriented Education, and Participatory Decision Making Systems in 1974. He was instrumental in naming the first Space Shuttle the Enterprise and banning the first space weapon (FOBS) in SALT II.

He has published over 100 future-oriented articles in such as the Nikkei, ADWEEK, International Tribune, LEADERS, New York Times, McGraw-Hill’s Contemporary Learning Series, Current, Royal Society of Arts (RSA) Journal, Foresight, Futures, Technological Forecasting, Futures Research Quarterly, and The Futurist. He is co-editor of Futures Research Methodology version 3.0, author of Future Mind: Merging the Mystical and the Technological in the 21st Century (1989 & 1994), Linking the Future: Findhorn, Auroville, Arcosanti(1979), and co-author of Space Trek: The Endless Migration (1978 & 1979).

Glenn has a BA in philosophy from American University, an MA in Teaching Social Science – Futuristics from Antioch Graduate School of Education (now Antioch University New England), and was a doctoral candidate in general futures research at the University of Massachusetts. He received the Donella Meadows Metal, Kondratieff Metal, Emerald Citation of Excellence, honorary professorship and doctor’s degrees from two universities in South America (Universidad Ricardo Palma and Universidad Franz Tamayo) and is a leading boomerang stunt man.

Mark Laisure (Moderator)Screen Shot 2018-12-20 at 3.28.03 PM

Chief Executive Officer, Vortex Immersion Media, Executive Producer, Co-Host “Life Changes” Radio Show

Mark is a Venture Strategist, Inventor, and Award-Winning Entrepreneur. Mark’s primary areas of focus have been within disruptive technologies, sustainable business solutions, conscious media and transformational events. After an early Wall Street career with firms such as UBS PaineWebber and Wellington Shields & Co., Mark has been a guiding force behind several start-ups, takeovers, and turnarounds. Most notably; INKTOMI Corporation (acquired by YAHOO!), TERANEX (video processing), MESH NETWORKS (acquired by MOTOROLA), SKYCROSS, ZEROS & ONES, ONEHOPE (cause-centric commerce.) and LIFE CHANGES, the online destination for The LIFE CHANGES Show. Mark’s awards include Prime Time Emmy for technological innovation in film and television processing, R&D 100 award (The Oscar’s of Inventing) and Businessweek Magazine Product of the Year.

Filippo Voltaggio (Moderator/Host) Screen Shot 2018-12-25 at 2.45.34 PM

Host, Founder, Producer “Life Changes” Radio Show

Filippo Voltaggio, Author, Speaker, LIFECoach, and TV and Radio Host, has incorporated the years of experience from being in front of, behind and on the little screen, the big screen and live stages into every thing he does.  His passion has become incorporating all his gifts and using them for the good of many.  From his singing, writing, hosting or one on ones to many on ones, Filippo brings it all together to create a unique experience all his own for all to make their own.

From his acclaimed radio shows and TV and film appearances and performances,  to his experiences in the world of business, working for a a Fortune Top 3 Company and later owning a boutique entertainment agency; to his study of human psychology and esoteric arts, Filippo has seen and experienced and learned so much about the human condition and the struggle to being our authentic selves.

Filippo is a recent recipient of the President’s ‘Call to Service’ award from President Barack Obama and is listed in the Cambridge Book of Who’s Who.

After receiving a degree B.A. from USCD in Engineering Management, and being decorated in the his business career with top awards and honors, Filippo went on to study the field of energetic healing and became an Energetic Alchemist, Master and Teacher, a Reiki Master and Teacher, a Theta Practitioner Healer, a Reconnective Healer and an Ordained Minister.

How fitting to note that an interpretation of his name Filippo Voltaggio is “Love Voltage,” the electricity of love…

Ed LantzEd Lantz (Host)

Futurist, Engineer, Designer, President & Founder, Vortex Immersion Media

Ed Lantz is an entertainment technology engineer, entrepreneur, immersive experience designer and innovator in giant-screen digital cinema. He left aerospace engineering in 1990 to transform old-style planetariums into 360-degree immersive visualization environments, designing over a dozen dome theaters worldwide while at Spitz, Inc. including the Library of Alexandria in Egypt, National Space Center in Leicester, UK, the Glasgow Science Center in Glasgow, Scotland and Papalote Museo del Nino in Mexico City.  He also led the product development of the SciDome digital planetarium which has sold over 100 units worldwide.

Ed co-founded Vortex Immersion Media in 2007 to bring immersive and interactive experiences into mainstream arts and entertainment markets. Vortex produces immersive and interactive media experiences for themed entertainment, VR Cinemas and numerous Fortune 500 companies including Condé Nast, EMC2, Microsoft, NBC Universal, Nestle, NFL, Nike, Nokia, Sprint and Turner Broadcast. Vortex also operates the Vortex Dome, the first commercial immersive media production studio and events venue located in downtown Los Angeles. The Vortex Dome hosts a wide range of arts and entertainment co-productions including live stage shows (Pasión, BollyDoll), fine arts performances (Blue Apple ballet), live concerts (Ceremony with James Hood) in addition to immersive arts educational activities (classes for CalArts, USC and Relativity University).

Ed has published numerous articles in journals and trade publications on immersive media and virtual reality, is a public speaker on panels and keynote talks including at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and is a regular contributor to ACM/SIGGRAPH. Ed’s personal focus is on the unique cognitive properties of next-generation multisensory “sentient” environments, the merging of virtual and real storytelling worlds, and the development of fulldome theaters as next-generation entertainment and performance venues. Ed holds two U.S. patents on immersive theater technologies, was awarded a Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering with minor in Quantum Physics and Electromagnetics from Tennessee Tech University, and is a founder of the trade association IMERSA. He co-authored DIGSS 1.1 (Digital Immersive Giant Screen Specifications) in cooperation with the Giant Screen Cinema Association, is a member of ACM/SIGGRAPH and IEEE, co-chaired the VR Village at SIGGRAPH 2015, and chairs the Boards of nonprofit organizations c3: Center for Conscious Creativity and Create Now.

Kate McCallum (Host)

Producer, Writer, Media Strategist, Editor, Founder c3


Kate McCallum is is forward-thinking producer, writer, and digital arts and media strategist with an emphasis in IP development, transmedia and new media technology platforms.  She founded Bridge Arts Media, LLC, a transmedia/cross-platform development, production and consulting company, and the c3: Center for Conscious Creativity, a 501(c)3 dedicated to creating a better future through the power of arts and media.  Kate serves on the National Board of the PGA: Producers Guild of America and is a Board Delegate on the PGA New Media Council, is a member of the TV Academy, the WFSF: World Future Studies Federation, and Chair of the Arts & Media Node for The Millennium Project, a global futurist think tank.

McCallum currently consults with Vortex Immersion Media, a company specializing in the development and production of fulldome 360/VR immersive content and experience design, immersive brand experiences, VR, interactive media, and live mixed media performances to launch an innovation lab and AIR: Artist In Residence program in the company’s dome theater, The Vortex Dome located at LA Center Studios.  She also serves as the Managing Editor of Camera Operator magazine, the trade publication of the SOC: Society of Camera Operators.

She spent 20 years at Universal and Paramount Studios in Los Angeles working on the development and production of feature films, and broadcast and cable episodic television with some of the top showrunners and writers in the industry on such shows as; Miami Vice, Law & Order, Equalizer, and The Marshal to name a few.  Kate produced a TV Movie for NBC called What Kind of Mother Are You?  As VP of Creative for Western Sandblast at Paramount Kate developed and sold TV movies and off net series concepts to outlets such as Showtime and UPN.  She also produced over 200 episodes of content for Vidblogger Nation,  a VoD channel on Comcast for Simply New, and has served as CEO for the US office of a Korean media company called Titan Platform.  Kate also produced both the 360 fulldome film and fulldome live show versions of MESMERICA with musician James Hood.

McCallum’s been an international guest speaker or instructor for organizations such as; the Hong Kong Design Institute, Singapore Media Academy, the Asian Childrens’ Content Conference, XMedia Lab in Perth, Australia, the CICSEP conference in Shenzhen, China, and recently spoke at the TIE Global Summit conference in Mumbai, India on The Future of VR to name a few.

Kate helped design, present and speak in a seminar called “Transmedia Storytelling and Strategy Design” for the PGA and the Television Academy, and was a featured speaker at the Global Leaders Forum in Seoul, Korea on the topic of Future Trends in the Arts and Media.

%d bloggers like this: