On Air Fest 2024 announces initial lineup

Sessions will feature hosts from Fresh Air, Twenty Thousand Hertz, and more

On Air Fest, an annual event celebrating audio storytelling and podcasting, has announced the first round of speakers for its event, which is returning next year from 28 February to 1 March at Brooklyn’s Wythe Hotel. 

The event, produced by creative agency work x work and its founder and creative director Scott Newman, brings together emerging and established voices from the audio industry to share insights and conversation. On Air’s official programming partners include Vox Media Podcast Network, APM Studios, Pushkin Industries, Talkhouse, and Radiotopia. 

This year has a special focus on the art and business of podcasting. A number of podcast hosts are taking part in the annual event, including Fresh Air’s co-host Tonya Mosle in “a very special session”, as well as live recordings from Design Matters with Debbie Millman, Sing For Science with Sid Sriram, The Allusionist with Helen Zaltzman, Twenty Thousand Hertz with Dallas Taylor, and Talkhouse Podcast.

All sessions will take place across three distinct stages at the Wythe Hotel, while live recordings will take place at the Podcast Penthouse. Throughout the three-day event, there will also be audio installations featured across the hotel and beyond, as well as other evening events planned in the hotel’s Screening Room. 

In addition to the main festival, Vox Media’s technology news brand The Verge and Hot Pod, the podcasting newsletter that it acquired in 2021, will be hosting their invite-only Hot Pod Summit on 28 February to kick off next year’s On Air Fest. More updates about the programming and line-up for the summit will be shared in the new year, according to Hot Pod’s lead reporter Ariel Shapiro. 

“I’m excited to announce that Hot Pod Summit is returning to Brooklyn on February 28th, 2024, as part of On Air Fest for a day of in-depth talks, intimate conversations, and industry networking,” said Shapiro in yesterday’s Hot Pod newsletter. “The invite-only summit is our way of kicking off the year in podcasting and talking about what’s on everyone’s minds — I’m eager to see you all, catch up, and hear what everyone’s thinking.” 

Highlights from this year’s Hot Pod Summit, which took place at the end of February, included a session with YouTube’s head of podcasting Kai Chuk in which he first revealed YouTube Music’s plans to start supporting podcasts. YouTube Music started the rollout of podcasts on its app to US audiences later that month, and plans to complete its global rollout by the end of this year. 

Vox Media Podcast Network also recently announced that it will be hosting a stage at this year’s South by Southwest (SXSW) which will feature sessions with hosts from shows across its network as part of a new partnership with the conference.