Awards and Events in association withCreative Circle

D&AD Announces Headline Speakers for 2019 D&AD Festival

Associations, Award Shows and Festivals
London, UK
Professor Green, Lauren Laverne, Rankin and Jefferson Hack, among many others, will take the stage in London this May
D&AD Festival, the UK event celebrating global creative talent, has unveiled its line-up of headline speakers.

Held against a backdrop of global unrest and turbulence, D&AD Festival brings together a line up of over 100 speakers whose purpose is to inspire future generations to use their creative ingenuity to help innovate a positive future for the world. The theme for this year’s Festival is Shaping the Future, and speakers will share what it takes to master the skills, storytelling techniques and new technology to shape a better future for the creative industry and society at large.

Designed to provide insight into the latest thinking and innovations, inspire creative energy and spark the next big idea, D&AD Festival returns to The Old Truman Brewery, London, 21-23 May 2019. The Festival features an all-star line up of creative keynotes, fireside chats, workshops and masterclasses from industry greats from the world of advertising, art, design, fashion, film, and many more.

This year’s speakers include:

Professor Green: A crossover superstar of British music, the rapper otherwise known as Stephen Manderson has recently presented critically acclaimed documentaries for the BBC and Channel 4, and published his autobiography 'Lucky'. With his life and music intertwined, he will take the stage to talk about his music career as well as his creative response to difficult issues he is helping to move  beyond taboo - namely male mental health, depression, and suicide. (Wednesday 22 May, 5:45pm)

Lauren Laverne: Chart-topping singer turned DJ turned presenter of all things cultural, the former host of BBC2’s The Culture Show is now the frontwoman of iconic Radio 4 show Desert Island Discs She is one of a very few broadcasters with the cross over appeal to appear on all of the BBC’s network radio stations. She will be talking to the D&AD crowd about music and its importance in the cultural and creative landscape. (Tuesday 21 May, 5:45pm)

Rankin: World-renowned British photographer, publisher and film director has a portfolio ranging from portraiture to documentary, and has photographed the likes of The Rolling Stones, Kate Moss, and The Queen. Known for being fearless behind the lens, he will discuss his career, the craft of photography, the impact of tech and, most notably, the effect of Instagram on the photography industry. (Tuesday 21 May 5:00pm)

Jefferson Hack: The maverick editorial director and publisher of Dazed Group and creative director of MAD Agency London and influential website Nowness is a true industry pioneer. As an icon of creativity, Jefferson Hack has been consistently at the cutting edge of journalism, film, photography, television and digital media, and will be discussing his views on music, fashion, and the current media landscape. (Wednesday 22 May, 11:15am)

Now in its fourth year, D&AD Festival hosts almost 5,000 attendees from around the world, with people from all walks of life coming to seek the very latest ideas and inspiration from the best in the business. The event culminates in the spectacular D&AD Awards Ceremony show the evening of 23 May at The Old Truman Brewery.

Joining the headline speakers are a range of award-winning designers, advertisers, animators, storytellers and more from across the creative spectrum. The future’s creators and designers will include people applying their creative brains to space travel, such as NASA’s visual strategist Dan Goods. Other speakers include Sarah Andelman (Founder, Just An Idea, Colette), Liv Little (Founder, gal-dem), Camila Garay (Art Director, UNICEF - United Nations), Rob Janoff (Creator of the Apple logo, Rob Janoff Studio), Susan Hoffman (Chair, W+K), Paula Apkan & Nicole Crentsil (Founders of Black Girl Fest), Chris Kiefer (Creative Director/UX designer, Westworld), Edel Rodriguez (Artist) and Shantell Martin (Visual Artist), to name just a few.

The Masterclass stage will bring together the best creative minds to teach their skills through intimate and engaging workshops (See Notes to Editors). New to the Festival for 2019, a separate two-day course for aspiring creative pioneers will also take place to provide guidance and insight into what makes great creative leadership led by Sir Clive Woodward (Rugby World Cup winning coach), Nils Leonard (founder, Uncommon), Anna Higgs (Head of Entertainment, Facebook) and Leila Fataar (Platform13).

Harriet Devoy, D&AD President, said “D&AD Festival is a powerful moment that brings together the global creative community to share knowledge and be inspired. Culminating with the awarding of this year’s Pencils, the Festival helps shape D&AD’s agenda for the year ahead, influencing our education programmes and initiatives to strengthen our offering as a learning provider for the creative industry.”

Tim Lindsay, D&AD CEO, said “The Festival offers a rich programme of talks, workshops, masterclasses, interactive features, fringe events and networking opportunities, plus, a chance to view the most outstanding work of the past year. In short, it is a wonderful, creative learning experience. Attendees can expect diverse, inspiring, relevant content delivered by the world’s leading creative practitioners, designed to develop the full breadth of essential professional skills for every discipline and career stage.”

This year’s Festival will also feature an exhibition with regular screenings of the work shortlisted for a 2019 D&AD Pencil, showcasing thousands of pieces of the best commercial creativity to discover and learn from. The D&AD Awards Ceremony will close the Festival on the evening of 23 May.

The full list of D&AD Festival speakers confirmed so far, along with programme details, including a breakdown of all talk topics, insight sessions, workshops and timings can be found on the D&AD website here.

Festival passes are on sale now, with a 10% discount through 25 April. For further D&AD Festival 2019 programme details and to purchase passes, visit

Work from D&AD