Music

SXSW Announces 2025 London Edition

Austin’s South by Southwest conference and festival is heading to the United Kingdom, marking the first time that the world-famous event has been held in Europe.

Due to take place over one week in June 2025, the inaugural edition of SXSW London will follow the same format as its Texas-based forerunner and feature “inspiring and challenging” keynote talks, music performances and showcase leading innovations in tech, gaming and film, organizers said in today’s announcement. Names and details of who will be appearing will be announced in the coming months.

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Held annually in the city of Austin since 1987, SXSW has grown to become one of the biggest events in the global music calendar, attracting hundreds of thousands of musicians, creatives, filmmakers, media companies and music industry executives to the state of Texas every March.

Amy Winehouse, Billie Eilish, Dua Lipa, Ed Sheeran, Stormzy and Wet Leg are just a few of the music artists who played the festival early in their careers.

Previous guest speakers have included Dave Grohl, U.S. president Barack Obama, Steven Spielberg, Michelle Yeoh and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, while Twitter, Foursquare and Airbnb are among the tech start-ups that SXSW famously helped launch.

Next year’s debut of SXSW London continues the event’s global rollout, which began in 2023 with the launch of an Asia Pacific edition in Sydney, Australia.

The second installment of SXSW Sydney takes place Oct. 14-20 with the main U.S. SXSW festival and conference scheduled for Mar. 7-17 in Austin. The addition of a new London edition makes the event series “an indispensable three-stop tour for the global creative community,” said organizers in a press release.

Although 2025 will be the first time that a SXSW-branded event has taken place in Europe, the organization did team up with Mercedes-Benz to host an annual conference, called the me Convention, between 2017 and 2019 in Germany and Sweden, targeted at the tech, design and creative communities.

“We couldn’t be more excited to bring the SXSW experience to London,” said SXSW co-president and chief brand officer Jann Baskett in a statement. He called next year’s planned event “an incredible new opportunity to highlight the elements that make SXSW unique in one of the most vibrant cities in Europe.”

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Randel Bryan, managing director of SXSW London, said the festival “will build on Austin’s incredible legacy” by providing “a platform for the next generation of creative talent.”

While detailed plans for SXSW London are yet to be announced, organizers said the event will be held in dozens of venues, art galleries and clubs in the East London district of Shoreditch and will have its own “distinctive personality,” reflecting the U.K. capital city’s “internationally renowned cultural life and creativity.”

Alongside keynote talks and music showcases, the conference will include “boundary pushing” visual arts, design and fashion programming, with exhibitions and interactive and immersive experiences taking place in public spaces across East London. The city’s proximity to other major creative and tech centers in Europe will also shape programming as organizers look to attract creative talent from across the continent.

Commenting on the announcement, London mayor Sadiq Khan called the plans “a historic opportunity” for the city “to once again bring the world’s most exciting talent together.”

In April 2021, it was announced that SXSW had signed a “lifeline” deal with P-MRC, a joint venture between Penske Media Corporation and MRC, making P-MRC a stakeholder and long-term partner with the Austin festival. P-MRC is the parent company of Billboard.

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