October 31 - November 2, 2019 | Chicago, Illinois | Hyatt Regency McCormick Place (2233 S. King Dr.)

Early Bird Registration is closed! Regular Registration is open here!

New Announcements


Regular Registration is open!

It's here!

Introducing the 2019 Audio Doctors...

The Doctors are IN.

We've sent out updates about Travel Stipends!

Thanks to a seed grant from the Manaaki Foundation, and the generosity of our community, raised $15,000 to fund travel stipends this year. Applications to receive a stipend to the 2019 Conference are closed for this year.

If you applied for a Travel Stipend, please check your email for an update about the status of your application. If you have not yet received word from Third Coast, you can email us at conference@thirdcoastfestival.org

If you're interested in donating to support Third Coast and the Third Coast Fund, which makes initiatives and others like it possible, you can donate here.

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Conference Overview

Here's the kind of programming you can expect. (A full, hour-by-hour schedule will come in October.)


What's at the heart & soul of Third Coast?

The 2019 Third Coast Conference will bring together a community of over 800 audio producers, journalists, artists, reporters, students, editors & sound designers that represent the breadth & depth of the field. Over two and a half days, we'll shine a light on the heart & soul of audio storytelling, as we see it: art, craft, community, critical reflection, and dialogue.

This year, we are excited to introduce several new initiatives and projects to better connect our commitment to our community with the programming of the Third Coast Conference.


Scheduled Programming

Thursday Meetups

A direct collaboration between Third Coast staff & the 2019 Conference Advisory Group, we're excited to bring back Thursday Meetups on the first afternoon of the Conference. This is a chance to gather & build community before the Conference officially begins.

Opening Night Provocations

Featured on the opening night of the Third Coast Conference, these are five-minute talks from producers & creators who hope to dare and ignite. We're now accepting pitches.

Breakout Sessions

On Friday & Saturday, Breakout Sessions are 75-minute sessions that represent the core of our Conference. All Breakout Sessions are recorded and shared as a free resources on the Third Coast Pocket Conference, a podcast pushing the boundaries of audio storytelling.

Spotlight Panel

On Saturday morning, this general session for all attendees will take us behind-the-scenes of one of the year's most important stories in our field.

Favorite Things

The final general session of the Conference, we put an audio luminary on stage & listen to what they've been hearing.

Awards Ceremony

Your Saturday night programming, crowning the winners of the 2019 Third Coast/Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition, aka "the Oscars of Radio." Then, get ready to stay up (way too) late for the after party!

The Fest

Stay tuned for a lineup of events — optional for attendees — pushing the boundaries of audio storytelling in venues across Chicago before, during & after the Third Coast Conference. Designed to bring listening audiences & producers together, and celebrate craft & community.

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Registration Information


Regular Registration is open!

Regular Registration is open. We’ll keep you updated on the numbers — stay tuned on Twitter, Facebook and Producer News.


Rate Information & Cost Breakdown

Early Bird rate ($430) / SOLD OUT

Regular rate ($495) / OPEN NOW

  • You can register here.
  • Regular Registration closes when all spots are sold out
  • We reserve 60% of all Conference spots at the Regular Registration rate.
  • Regular Registration will not sell out right away, but we do expect it will sell out within weeks.
  • We will keep you updated on how many spots are left!

Got more questions?

Read our Registration FAQ, or keep reading for information about registration dates and financial information.

Other Associated Costs

In addition to the cost of Registration, here's an estimate of projected costs to attend the 2019 Third Coast Conference.


Third Coast Travel Stipends

This year, we piloted Travel Stipends—intended for folks who demonstrate need for assistance to cover the costs of their travel to & stay in Chicago. In 2019, we successfully raised $15,000, thanks to a seed grant from the Manaaki Foundation, a few incredibly generous individuals, and the overwhelming support of the producer community (THANK YOU!) We were able to give away over 40 travel stipends.

If you applied for a Travel Stipend, please check your email! You should find an update about the status of your application.

Third Coast Travel Stipends are a project of the Third Coast Fund. If you'd like to donate to support Third Coast and other initiatives like this one, you can donate here.

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Plan Your Trip

The Conference is held at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place (2233 S. King Dr., Chicago, IL 60616) in Chicago's South Loop. Most Conference activities will be located on the second floor of the hotel.


Accommodations & Travel

Hyatt Regency McCormick Place

The Hyatt Regency McCormick Place has a limited-number of discounted hotel rooms available for Conference weekend. Use this link to reserve at the special rate. for the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place Hotel.

Explore other housing options

There are so many other options for where to stay in Chicago. Use the Third Coast Switchboard to connect with fellow attendees for room-share opportunities—and more!

Local Travel

The Hyatt Regency McCormick is a 35-minute drive from O’Hare International Airport (ORD) and a 20-minute drive from Midway International Airport (MDW); it’s also right off the CTA red and green lines, and the #3 bus.


Stay Connected

Producer News

The main place for #ThirdCoast19 news, updates and information. Sign up to get Conference info delivered straight to your inbox.

Third Coast Switchboard

Switchboard is the attendee digital headquarters. Introduce yourself, find a roommate, and start making connections before you get to Chicago!

Social Media

Follow the hashtag #ThirdCoast19 on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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Introducing: the 2019 Audio Doctors

The Doctor's are IN. And they are not all your usual suspects.

For the 2019 Third Coast Conference, we're relying on the expertise of six masterful practitioners of audio: three classic Story Doctors, one Visual Doctor, one Career Compass Doctor & one Sound Doctor (to be announced!)

Story Doctors

Treatment includes: reading through scripts, listening to tape with fresh ears, talking through structure, finding new inspiration, believing in yourself.

Visual Doctor

Treatment includes: all illustration-, website- & all design-related questions.

  • Dr. Jen Ng / Independent UX & visual designer

Career Compass Doctor

Treatment includes: Equipping you with industry knowledge, reinforcing your strengths, navigating institutionalized bias, pay negotiation, labor issues, and visioning your own roadmap.

Sound Doctor

Treatment includes: Interpreting editing plug-ins, getting in the thick of sound and music design, patience.

  • Still a secret / Keeping this secret (for now)
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Conference FAQ


About the Third Coast Conference

Who staffs the Conference?

Third Coast has a small but dedicated team of staff — get to know us! We also have an amazing group of volunteers, who receive a free Conference registration in exchange for working 6-8 hours. And, we couldn’t make the Conference happen without the many workers of the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place Hotel and the onsite team of sound engineers.

Why is the Third Coast Conference in Chicago?

The Third Coast International Audio Festival is an arts non-profit based in Chicago, and we take pride in convening folks from around the world here in the City of Big Shoulders.

Do you offer financial support?

We know that conferences are expensive to attend, especially without institutional support. This year, we were able to offer a limited number of [confidential] travel stipends to those with demonstrated financial need. Applications have now closed and all applicants have been notified.

How are presenters at Third Coast compensated?

Breakout Session presenters have their travel, hotel, and registration costs covered by Third Coast. We also offer a modest honorarium.


Registration

Can I register on behalf of someone else?

Yes. There’s an option to do so on the registration form.

Can I buy a block of registrations? Do you offer discounts to groups?

Our registration form doesn't allow for bulk purchases. You will need to fill out separate a registration form for each attendee. Because we want to make the Conference as affordable for individuals as possible, we do not offer special discounts for groups or institutions.

I’m a… (sponsor/presenter/press/volunteer/AIR New Voices Scholar) and I’m not sure where to register.

If you have a specific role beyond ‘attendee’, you will receive a link to register from the Third Coast staff! Hold tight—we didn't forget about you.

Why does Third Coast ask for personal demographic information like race & gender?

Third Coast is dedicated to creating an equitable environment for all in attendance. We collect this information about our attendees to better understand the make-up of the community we serve. We will never share your personal information without your explicit consent.

I can only attend one day of the Conference—do you sell single-day passes?

We do not offer single-day passes to the Third Coast Conference.

I can no longer attend! Can I get a refund for my registration? Can I transfer my registration?

Conference registrations are non-refundable. However, you can sell your registration directly to another person. (We'll miss you!) More information on how to transfer your registration coming soon.

I already registered but need to change something on my registration.

We'll have a form available after registration closes, and we'll email all registered attendees when the form opens.


Accommodation & Travel

Which airport is closest to the Conference hotel?

Midway Airport (serving Southwest & Delta airlines) is the closest airport to the Hyatt and is connected to the city by the CTA Orange Line Train. O’Hare airport (serving all major airlines) is also connected to the city by the CTA Blue Line train, which is a 45 minute ride directly to downtown.

How do I get to Hyatt McCormick Regency Place by public transit?

You can use the #3 CTA bus, or take the El via the Red Line or Green Line. See Chicago Transit Authority’s website for more information.

Do I have to stay at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place hotel?

No. Attendees are free to choose where they stay during the Conference.

What can I expect to budget for (food, lodging, travel)?

We've put together a rough estimate of the costs associated with attending the Conference.


During the Conference

Will there be gender-neutral bathrooms available onsite at the Conference?

Yes!

Will there be a private room available for nursing mothers?

Yes!

Is the Third Coast Conference accessible to folks with limited mobility?

Yes! We strive to make the Conference as accessible as possible. If you have a specific question or concern, please reach out to conference@thirdcoastfestival.org.

Can I reserve a meeting room at the Hyatt to conduct my own meetings & business?

We offer limited opportunities do so as part of our sponsorship packages! If you're interested, in sponsoring the Conference, please e-mail us at conference@thirdcoastfestival.org. If not, you're welcome to meet in the common spaces of the hotel and/or go offsite to hold meetings.

Can I reserve a seat in a particular Breakout Session?

All of the programming at the Third Coast Conference is on a first-come, first-serve. (That said, each Breakout Session happens twice, so you have two opportunities to attend!) Some sessions can be very popular, but no one is ever turned away.

Is there an additional cost for evening programming?

Late Night Provocations, the Opening Reception, and the 2019 Third Coast/Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition Awards Ceremony are all included as part of your registration. Other evening events, such as live shows or happy hours may have additional fees! (And we'll make sure to mark 'em.)


Getting Involved

How can I contact other attendees?

We’ll have a Conference Networking Directory, with the names and contact info of attendees who have opted-in. You can also connect with attendees on Switchboard & by using the #ThirdCoast19 hashtag on social media.

I want to talk about sponsorship opportunities!

We have several opportunities remaining to sponsor the 2019 Third Coast Conference. Please contact conference@thirdcoastfestival.org for more information.

Hi! I’m a member of the press and I’d like to cover the Third Coast Conference.

We welcome members of the press and reserve a limited number of passes for journalists interested in covering Third Coast. Please reach out to conference@thirdcoastfestival.org for more information.

Can I volunteer for the Third Coast Conference?

Applications to be a volunteer at the Third Coast conference are now closed. Meet the cohort of 2019 Conference volunteers!


Don't see the answer to your question?
Reach out directly to us at conference@thirdcoastfestival.org

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Featured in the 2019 Third Coast Conference

Adrián Florido

Adrián Florido (@adrianflorido) is a reporter for NPR's Code Switch team, where he's covered race, identity and culture since 2015. As part of his 2019 Breakout Session, he'll reflect on his experience as a reporter, including covering recent events in Puerto Rico (which he is currently doing, and on deadline!)

Adwoa Gyimah-Brempong

Adwoa Gyimah-Brempong (@adwoa_g) is a producer, editor, and multimedia storyteller who is deeply committed to co-creating story. As a member of the 2019 Conference Advisory Group, she is currently collaborating directly with Third Coast staff to envision & create Thursday Meetups: an afternoon of community-based gatherings that will kick off this year’s Conference.

Aliya Pabani

Aliya Pabani (@aliyapabani) is a Toronto-based freelance audio producer and artist and former host of The Imposter , an arts and culture podcast from Canadaland. As a member of the 2019 Conference Advisory Group, she is currently collaborating directly with Third Coast staff to envision & create Thursday Meetups: an afternoon of community-based gatherings that will kick off this year’s Conference.

Ariana Martinez

Ariana Martinez (@MartinezAriana_) is an artist working across audio and visual media. As a member of the 2019 Conference Advisory Group, they are currently collaborating directly with Third Coast staff to envision & create Thursday Meetups: an afternoon of community-based gatherings that will kick off this year’s Conference.

Brett Myers

Brett Myers (@BrettMyers) is a Senior Radio Editor for Reveal at The Center for Investigative Reporting. As a Story Doctor at the 2019 Third Coast Conference, Brett will meet one-on-one with producers to treat their story ailments.

Cassius Adair

Cassius Adair (@cassius_a) is an audio producer, writer, and researcher who lives in Charlottesville, Virginia. As a 2019 Late Night Co-Provocateur, he'll share how learning about trans storytelling changes the way we tell stories about: feelings and bodies and science and politics and... well, everything.

Earlonne Woods

Earlonne Woods is co-creator, co-producer and co-host of Ear Hustle from Radiotopia. As co-host of the 2019 Third Coast Awards Ceremony, Earlonne will make his return to the "Oscars of Radio." Last year, he beamed in via video (watch here) after winning a 2018 Best Documentary: Honorable Mention Award as part of the Ear Hustle team.

Ellen Mayer

Ellen Mayer (@EllenRebeccaM) is a community journalist, audio producer and facilitator living in Chicago. As a member of the 2019 Conference Advisory Group, she is currently collaborating directly with Third Coast staff to envision & create Thursday Meetups: an afternoon of community-based gatherings that will kick off this year’s Conference.

James T. Green

James (@_jamestgreen) is a producer at Gimlet Creative. As a Story Doctor at the 2019 Third Coast Conference, James will meet one-on-one with producers to treat their story ailments.

Jason Moon

Jason Moon (@jasonmoonNHPR) is a reporter at New Hampshire Public Radio, where he has worked since 2015. In his 2019 Breakout Session, expect to become even more deeply familiar with the captivating details of small towns in New Hampshire.

Jen Chien

Jen Chien (@j_chien) is a senior radio editor for Reveal from the Center for Investigative Reporting and PRX. In her Breakout Session, Jen will address the urgent demand for audio editors by illuminating the path to becoming a great one.

Jen Ng

Jen Ng (@funfetti_party) is a user experience and visual designer for digital products and experiences. As a Visual Doctor at the 2019 Third Coast Conference, Jen will meet one-on-one with producers to treat their visual ailments.

Jocelyn Robinson

Jocelyn Robinson is a Yellow Springs, Ohio-based independent producer, educator, and radio preservationist. As a member of the 2019 Conference Advisory Group, she is currently collaborating directly with Third Coast staff to envision & create Thursday Meetups: an afternoon of community-based gatherings that will kick off this year’s Conference.

Johanna Zorn

As executive director and co-founder of the Third Coast International Audio Festival, Johanna Zorn has been committed to the development of contemporary audio culture for more than three decades. As the featured speaker for our 2019 Third Coast Favorite Things, she'll introduce you to a radio time machine, an audio hologram, a sonic capsule we’ll plant all together.

Julie Caine

Julie Caine's heart is in her ears. She is the Head of Podcasts at KQED. Julie is supporting the 2019 Third Coast Conference as a member of the Conference Advisory Group and as a 2019 Audio Doctor.

Leila Day

Leila Day (@leiladayleila) is a producer and co-host of The Stoop Podcast and a producer at Pineapple Street Media. At the 2019 Third Coast Conference, Leila will be facilitating AIR’s Pitch Panel—a hands-on peek behind the curtain at one of the most important skills a producer can learn: how to pitch.

Lina Misitzis

Lina Misitzis (@lmisitzis) is a producer & reporter at This American Life, and is creating a new podcast with comedians Nick Kroll and John Mulaney. She spent the past few years making The Last Days of August and The Butterfly Effect with Jon Ronson. Her 2019 Third Coast Conference Breakout Session will be about porn.

Molly Woodstock

Molly Woodstock (@mollywoodstock) is a queer journalist, audio producer, and inclusivity educator based in Portland, Oregon. Molly will 'provocate' on how trans-affirming storytelling can make all of our stories — not just those explicitly about trans people — more accurate, more inclusive, and frankly more interesting.

Nigel Poor

Nigel Poor is co-creator, co-producer and co-host of Ear Hustle from Radiotopia. She will be co-hosting the 2019 Third Coast / Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition Awards Ceremony.

Phyllis Fletcher

Phyllis Fletcher (@phylfletch) is the editor for APM Podcasts from American Public Media and is a decorated mentor and journalist. As the (first-ever!) Career Compass Doctor at the 2019 Third Coast Conference, Phyllis will meet one-on-one with producers to help illuminate their professional journeys.