SXSW: March 15 2023

Wednesdays are always an in-between day at SXSW. Although there’s still a few Interactive sessions, most of the tech attendees have left. Music is starting to ramp up, but those folks don’t come for another day or two. The sidewalks aren’t as crowded and finding lunch is definitely easier.

Douglas Emhoff

The Second Gentleman, Douglas Emhoff, was interviewed by Simone Sanders-Townsend, former spokesperson for VP Kamala Harris and currently a host on MSNBC. Douglas left his job as a successful lawyer in the entertainment industry to support her. In this role, he focuses on gender equity issues, such as paid family leave, child care, pay equity, and reproductive rights. Kamala was already a busy lawyer in politics when they met. He is the first Jewish person to be married to a president or vice president. Obama’s advice to Douglas: “Don’t read the tweets, especially the comments.” He hoped to meet the New Order band members who would be on the same stage after his session.

Memorable quotes: “My main job is to love and support her (Kamala). She is an awesome wife…and an amazing partner.” “Men need to support women and girls. If we lift up women, we lift up our economy.”

Music by Alexandra Whittingham

Keynote: New Order

New Order was introduced by the current mayor of Manchester, UK: “All people are welcome in our city.” Band members Gillian Gilbert, Stephen Morris, and Bernard Sumner were interviewed by Will Hodgkinson of the Times of London. The band began in 1981, and in spite of some hiatuses, are still playing today. 


This annual show features artistic concert posters and their creators. It’s fun to look for posters featuring your favorite performers. 

Going Varsity in Mariachi

This documentary dwelves into the thriving world of high school mariachi competitions. Mariachi bands of all ages are common in south Texas and even up here in Austin. The co-directors and editor spoke after today’s screening. Back on Sunday, Bill and I happened upon Edinburg North High School’s Mariachi Oro playing in front of the Paramount Theater on Congress Avenue.

© Austin Downtown Diary, 2023. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Austin Downtown Diary with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *