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SXSW spotlights 2019 festival lineup with first wave of keynote speakers

SXSW spotlights 2019 festival with first wave of keynote speakers

logo for SXSW 2014 South by Southwest
SXSW announced the first round of programming for 2019. Photo courtesy of SXSW

With Austin City Limits Music Festival just a few weeks away, it's time to start talking talking about SXSW 2019. (We kid, we kid.) On September 10, the interactive/music/film festival announced the first round of keynote speakers, a motley crew ranging from a '90s music icon to technology darlings. 

The man who launched a million selfies, Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom, will join Josh Constine, editor-at-large for TechCrunch, in a conversation. Systrom leads a keynote speaker lineup that includes Chrvches frontwoman Lauren Mayberry; writer, producer, and director Marti Noxon; and Garbage singer/fashion icon Shirley Manson. 

SXSW also took the opportunity to unveil the first round of featured speakers for 2019, including producer Jason Blum (Get Out, Whiplash) joining fellow moviemaker John Pierson (Chasing Amy) in a special discussion. Ari Paul, Kyle Samani, and Linda Xie are scheduled to join Robert Hackett in a panel about the future of investing in the age of cryptocurrency and blockchain.

Other featured speakers for SXSW 2019:

  • The 2017 Time Person of the Year Susan Fowler
  • Artist and musician Amanda Palmer
  • Bestselling author Michael Pollan
  • Media theorist and author Douglas Rushkoff
  • BenevolentAI CEO Joanna Shields
  • Author Amy Webb
  • Designer Bjarke Ingels
  • Upworthy co-founder Eli Pariser

“As a premier destination for innovation and creative discovery, SXSW is proud to begin our 2019 season by announcing a strong and dynamic group of leaders, storytellers, and visionaries holding important conversations about the challenges and opportunities ahead of us,” said Hugh Forrest, SXSW chief programming officer, in a release.

This is the first programming announcement for SXSW, which returns to Austin March 8-17, 2019. In a release, the longtime Austin fest teased even more announcements coming as soon as October.