Podcasting will get decidedly more royal in the coming days when Archewell Audio, the newly formed audio-first production company created by Prince Harry and Meghan Markel debuts its first shows as part of their new multi-year partnership with Spotify. Ahead of the new year, Archewell Audio and Spotify’s Gimlet studio will release their first offering – a holiday special hosted by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex that will feature stories of hope and compassion from inspirational guests in celebration of the new year. Then in 2021, the working royals will produce and host a slate of podcasts.
“One of the things my husband and I have always talked about is our passion for meeting people and hearing their stories,” said Markel on the still-untitled show’s trailer. “We’re talking to some amazing people, they’re going to share their memories that have really helped shape this past year which has been, as we know, a difficult one for everyone.”
Prince Harry said the project’s aim is “to bring forward different perspectives and voices” telling listeners, “So many people have been through so much pain this year, experiencing loss, a huge amount of uncertainty, but it feels worth acknowledging that 2020 has connected us in ways we could have never imagined, through endless acts of compassion and kindness.”
The appeal of Spotify for the royals appears to be its global reach. The streamer says it has 320 million monthly active users worldwide.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex may live in California, but the power of their voices rests in their status as citizens of the world,” says Spotify Chief Content and Advertising Business Officer Dawn Ostroff. “That they are embracing the extraordinary capacity of podcasts on Spotify while also seeking to elevate underrepresented voices is a testament to their appreciation for the potential of audio storytelling.”
The first complete series from Archewell Audio and Spotify is expected next year and will be available to stream for free on Spotify. Terms of the deal were not made public.