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SXSW: Willie Nelson, Demi Lovato series and so much more in just first announcements

There's nothing Austinites look forward to more than South by Southwest, and this year, the annual event returns as a digital experience.


SXSW Online, an exclusive digital experience, will take place from March 16-20.

SXSW Conference announced Austin local Willie Nelson as the event's keynote speaker, along with featured speakers Queen Latifah, The Chainsmokers, Matthew McConaughey, Samantha Bee, Sir Richard Branson and many more.

More than 200 conference sessions were curated for this year's festival via PanelPicker on seven different themes: A New Urgency, Challenging Tech's Path Forward, Cultural Resilience in the Arts, The Rebirth of Business, Transforming the Entertainment Landscape, Connection in Disconnection and An Uncharted Future.

Sessions include speakers from well-known companies, universities and creative industries such as the University of Texas, Billboard, Black Women Make Art, Condé Nast, Harvard Medical School, Indeed, NASA, Oxford Nanopore Technologies, Patreon, SiriusXM, Twitter and many more.

Along with speakers, SXSW has announced Demi Lovato: Dancing with the Devil, her latest docuseries, as a headliner on the opening night of SXSW Film Festival. Other highlight films include Hysterical, Confronting a Serial Killer, The Hunt for Planet B, Jakob's Wife, Luchadoras, Recovery and Violet. The full film festival lineup will be released Feb. 10.

Registration is open now for the SXSW online pass for $249. The pass covers the entire digital experience including conference keynotes and speaker sessions, workshops, SXSW Film festival, musical performances, online exhibitions, networking meetups, professional development and more. You can register online here.

After the cancelation of the 2020 SXSW due to the pandemic, Austinites can look forward to a safe digital experience from home. The festival has not yet announced any in-person events this year due to the COVID-19 surge in Austin, but originally announced it would be a hybrid of in-person and virtual events in the fall last year.

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