Waking up with a pounding headache, memories from last night rushed back. An influencer with a whopping 2 million followers, one glass too many, and an evening drenched in youthful exuberance. Here’s looking at you, Pia and Kane. But let’s not play the blame game. In truth, it was all me, relishing the moments and living it up with some social media titans.

The honour was mine to be a part of the maiden SXSW Sydney. Hosting panels, orchestrating a grand soirée at The Alibi, recording voiceovers for the central stage, and introducing illustrious personalities like Charlie Brooker, the genius behind ‘Black Mirror’, and the iconic Nicole Kidman. Fun tidbit: I once shared the screen with Nicole in ‘BMX Bandits’, zooming around on my blue mongoose, donning a Davey Crockett raccoon skin hat – a gift from my father, straight from Disneyland.

Now, for those uninitiated, SXSW (South by Southwest) is a beacon of creativity and innovation originating from Austin, Texas. A tradition of many years, this festival has now set its sights on Sydney, Australia, for an upcoming decade-long extravaganza. Picture Expo 88, but amplified: more parties, head-banging rock n’ roll, futuristic robots, flying vehicles, AI-operated vending machines, bustling ad agencies, immersive social media pop-ups, and an unending supply of free beverages, food, and experiences. And oh, not to forget, the occasional morning-after headache.

A quick nostalgia trip: During Expo 88, as a 15-year-old rebel with jet-black hair, I operated the gold stamp machine in the United Nations pavilion. Quite the journey from there to here.

If you’re even remotely associated with the creative world, mark your calendars for next year’s SXSW Sydney. The connections I’ve made are invaluable. I’ve ventured into the realm of video game voicing, initiated discussions for a brand-new studio in Brisbane, potentially bagged a film role, and expanded my VoiceOver network.

A heartfelt shoutout to Joe Millward, Mel Poole, and Dan Macarthur for making this week nothing short of legendary. Check out their project called Metropius. SXSW Sydney? Highly recommend. Five stars.

Charlie Brooker the Black Mirror creator and Julia Zemiro.

Joe Millward, Mel Poole and a cross eyed hooligan.