SiriusXM and 7th Sun Productions Announce New Podcast “The Optimist Project,” Hosted by Yara Shahidi

Created and co-produced by the mother-daughter team of Keri and Yara Shahidi, the show is the latest launch from SiriusXM’s Listen Next initiative to develop diverse audio talent and promote inclusivity in podcasting 

Each week, Yara will sit down with change makers across industries to explore the question: “what gives you hope?”

NEW YORK – June 18, 2024 – SiriusXM, in collaboration with 7th Sun Productions, the media company co-founded by Keri and Yara Shahidi, today announced their new podcast, “The Optimist Project.” Premiering later this year, host Yara Shahidi will bring her perpetual curiosity and penchant for humor to conversations with change leaders on what inspires them to dream of a better tomorrow.

“The Optimist Project” asks the simple but often overlooked question: what gives you hope? Each week, host Yara Shahidi will be joined by special guests across generations and genres to explore the large and small ways they maintain their optimism and hope. They’ll delve into the challenges and realities of their work; the things that have kept them fighting the odds; and the wins, both big and small. In a world seemingly defined by overwhelming news, “The Optimist Project” will provide listeners with the tools and inspiration to engage more meaningfully in their world.

“The Optimist Project blossomed from our own pursuit of fulfillment and the wonderful journey it takes us on,” said Keri and Yara Shahidi. “We are thrilled to give voice to and share conversations that we hope inspire us all to keep following our purpose and passions.” 

“The Optimist Project'' will be co-produced by 7th Sun and SiriusXM’s Stitcher Studios. It is the first audio project from the Shahidis’ 7th Sun Productions; and is the newest show from SiriusXM’s Listen Next initiative to develop diverse audio talent and promote inclusivity in podcasting. Listen Next pairs the power of SiriusXM with leading, diverse-led production companies to help the next generation of creators break through the audio landscape and launch successful, sustainable podcasting careers.   

"We couldn't be happier to be collaborating on such a fun, creative and compelling project,” said Kameel Stanley, Program Director, SiriusXM’s Stitcher Studios. “Working with partners who love audio as much as we do is what the Listen Next program is all about. With Yara and Keri’s genuine interest in learning and exploring as the guiding force, we know that listeners are going to get so much out of ‘The Optimist Project.’"

“The Optimist Project” was created by Yara Shahidi and Keri Shahidi, who will also serve as executive producers. SiriusXM’s Colin Anderson and Kameel Stanley will serve as executive producers, and Judith Kargbo will serve as senior producer.


About Yara Shahidi

Yara Shahidi is an award-winning actress, producer, and change maker. She most recently executive produced and starred in Freeform’s black-ish spinoff series, grown-ish, which sunsetted last month after six seasons. Under the 7th Sun Banner, the Shahidi’s  also created and co-executive produced the Meta show, Yara Shahidi’s Day Off, alongside Jesse Collins Entertainment, where Yara reflected with guests on their interests and passions outside of fame. Offscreen, Shahidi is a champion for inclusive media programming, and an advocate for equity. Yara is a sought-after public speaker who has been in conversation with the likes of Oprah, Harry Belafonte Jr, Dr. Angela Davis, President Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Tory Burch, and Senator Cory Booker.

About 7th Sun Productions

7th Sun champions authentic storytelling. Inspired by the purpose of elevating underrepresented voices, 7th Sun pursues projects that touch upon themes of history, heritage, culture, and intersectionality.

About Sirius XM Holdings Inc.

SiriusXM is the leading audio entertainment company in North America with a portfolio of audio businesses including its flagship subscription entertainment service SiriusXM; the ad-supported and premium music streaming services of Pandora; an expansive podcast network; and a suite of business and advertising solutions. Reaching a combined monthly audience of approximately 150 million listeners, SiriusXM offers a broad range of content for listeners everywhere they tune in with a diverse mix of live, on-demand, and curated programming across music, talk, news, and sports. For more about SiriusXM, please go to:

Source: SiriusXM

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