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Podcast Festival Opening Act

Get air play at one of the world’s premier podcast festivals! An expanded platform for our country’s rich audio talent, Opening Act offers homegrown podcasters the opportunity to get their shows heard at Hot Docs Podcast Festival, running live in Toronto and online from January 25-28, 2022.

We are currently welcoming submissions of two-minute excerpts from original Canadian shows to be featured before a selection of live events at the 2022 Festival.

Selected participants will have their shows played to a captive, global audience of podcast lovers and get exposure to attending audio executives and industry leaders.

If you’re a Canadian creator, and actively producing an original podcast, submit the best two-minute audio clip of your show for consideration. Winners will also receive a complimentary pass to the Festival and will be listed online and across our various social media channels.

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Program Information


  • The podcast must be actively in production or releasing new episodes.
  • Principle podcast creator must be Canadian.
  • Preference will be given to independently produced content.
  • Submissions from all genres will be considered, but priority will be given to shows that favour compelling non-fiction audio storytelling.

What to submit:

  • Please submit a two-minute clip (120 seconds max) that you feel represents your podcast best. The clip should illustrate your show’s premise, content, and tone in a way that might catch the ear of a brand-new audience hearing it for the first time.
  • Clip submitted must be in English or with English subtitles available.
  • Accepted file formats: 44.1 kHz/16-bit stereo audio file in either .aiff, .aac, .wav, or .mp3*
  • The applicant must own the rights to the project or must demonstrate authorized permission to air the clip.

Application Deadline: Wednesday, December 15 at 11:59 p.m.
There is no fee to apply. Successful applicants will be notified in early January.


Questions? Email us at [email protected]

Lead Sponsor

  • Lead Sponsor

Major Partners

  • Major Partners
  • Major Partners

Podcast Festival Box Office Sponsor

  • Podcast Festival Box Office Sponsor

Media Sponsor

  • Media Sponsor

Event Sponsors

  • Event Sponsors
  • Event Sponsors
  • Event Sponsors

Hot Docs Cinema Presenting Partner

  • Cbcdocs Web

Cinema Box Office Sponsor

  • Logo Crave 2019