Collaborating with Ben Zander: We Made the Ninja Cry

John Bates and TED Speaker Benjamin Zander

I had been turned on to Benjamin Zander’s purely excellent 2008 TED talk about Music and Passion by my friend Jim McCarthy, the CEO of who had attended the very first TEDActive in February of 2008. Mere weeks later he showed me the archive footage of his favorite talk that year, Benjamin Zander. I was…

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A Hero of Mine Has Just Died

I just got the news that Tomas Dobrovolskis of Vilnius, Lithuania has died. A very bright light in the world has just been extinguished. He performed at TEDxVilnius last year and was going to do a workshop at TEDxKids in Vilnius coming up. He was someone I connected with immediately. His impish smile and his many…

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