Tag Archives: Lemonada Media

Lemonada Media Launches Debut Podcast from BEING Studios



From Lemonada Media, the podcast network that makes life suck less, comes BEING Trans — the debut series from the network’s BEING Studios, the first audio reality podcast studio where audio meets reality TV. The first series from the studio is a six-part unscripted doc-reality series that follows four transgender individuals living in Los Angeles.

Over the course of three months, the crew — led by reality TV expert Kasey Barret (MTV’s The Real World, Keeping Up With The Kardashians, Born This Way) — recorded hundreds of hours of live conversations, experiences and intimate moments with cast members as they lived them, providing a uniquely unfiltered look at their daily lives.

Throughout the season, you’ll meet Jeffrey, a transgender man and standup comic navigating his career as well as his relationship with his partner, Emma. You’ll meet Mariana, a trans woman from Guatemala who is tackling tough issues at a local LGBTQ center along with her coworker Kadence. You’ll meet Chloe, who’s new to Los Angeles, and new to sating as a trans woman. And you’ll Sy, who’s figuring out their relationship and family dynamics with their husband Robert since coming out as trans non-binary. Dating, parenting, doctor visits, career quandaries, parties — you’ll get to hear them all.

“I’ve spent my whole career in unscripted television, and the opportunity to translate that into an audio format that was too exciting to pass up,” said BEING Studio Executive Producer Kasey Barrett, “Over the course of the taping, we fell in love with this incredible cast, and I think our listneners will too. A crew with no lights or cameras really creates an intimate environment, allowing listeners to truly feel like they are walking in another person’s shoes.”

Last summer, Lemonada announced the launch of BEING Studios, which creates groundbreaking, immersive audio reality podcasts that provide an unfiltered look into other people’s lives. Through thoughtful and entertaining narrative storytelling, BEING Studios offers listeners intimate, first-person access into worlds and people they not otherwise know. Future seasons will feature different topics and storylines, and immerse listeners into new worlds.

“One of our core values at Lemonada is empathy. We know building empathy works best when we are immersed, entertained, and in love with the character and people. Last spring, we Brough Kasey on to work with us to marry the best of reality TV with the best of audio, and BEING Studios was born,” shares Lemonada CEO and co-founder Jessica Cordova Kramer.

“Then, the hard work began. Casting, field recording, post-production. Sele Leota, our co-executive producer, our diverse crew, and our staff at Lemonada, have been deep in the weeds, creating a new way to tell first-person stories. Seeing elements of TV transform into an audio medium has been fascinating, challenging, and legitimately exhilarating, added Stephanie Wittles Wachs, Lemonada co-founder and chief creative officer.

The production team for BEING Trans includes: Kasey Barrett (She/Her), executive producer; Sele Leota (He/Him), co-executive producer; Myrrh Gossett (They/She), associate producer; Scott Hanlon (He/His), audio supervisor; Mary Mejia (They/Them), audio field recordist; Shar Jossell (She/Her), story consultant; and Greta Stromquist (She/Her), assistant producer.

The first two episodes of BEING Trans are available now on all major podcast platforms, with exclusive weekly bonus content available to Lemonada Premium subscriber on Apple Podcasts. New episodes will be released weekly.


Lemonada Media Expands Production Team



Lemonada Media, the podcast network that makes life suck less, announced new additions to its production team, led by co-founder and Chief Creative Officer Stephanie Wittles Wachs. On the heels of securing $8M in funding, Lemonada has quickly been able to expand its in-house production team to keep up with its current slate of 21 original podcasts, which reaches millions of listeners per month and will grow to over 30 original podcasts in 2022.

In 2021, Lemonada tripled its revenue, added 10 new shows, designed and trademarked an audio reality series (BEING Studios), and co-created original shows like Written Off with Jay Ellis’ Black Bar Mitzvah and Believe Her with publishing house Speigel & Grau, which launched at the top of the podcast charts.

Joining the company is Steve Nelson, as Vice President of Content & Production overseeing Lemonada’s always-on slate. Most recently, Steve served as the Head of Talk at Religion of Sports and prior to that, Senior Director of Programming at NPR and Director of On-Demand Programming at APM.

Steve’s team will be bolstered by two additional new hires: Rachel Neel, most recently NPR’s Supervising Senior Producer, in an new role at Lemonada as Senior Director of New Content, leading the development, pre-production, and launch of Lemonada’s rapidly growing portfolio of originals on its always-on slate; as well as MPR Lead Producer Kyle Shiely, who ran both Morning Edition and All Things Considered, and will now serve as Senior Producer of In The Bubble with Andy Slavitt, Lemonada’s popular and calming series that will shift to three times per week as of May.

Steve will work alongside Jackie Danziger (Vice President of Content & Production for Lemonada’s narrative slate) and Kasey Barrett (head of BEING Studios) and their growing teams.

Wittles Wachs says, “We are thrilled to welcome these exceptionally talented leaders to our growing production team who help Lemonada continue to scale our original weekly podcast programming and expand our mission to make life suck less.”

Jessica Cordova Kramer, Lemonada’s co-founder and CEO added, “And that goes for our work culture as well. In addition to having a skilled and diverse team, we are committed to prioritizing the well-being of our staff with benefits like 7 weeks paid time off annually, including 2.5 weeks of company-wide time to prevent burnout and foster creativity; parental leave that is inclusive of all genders, foster and adoption; full benefits and stock options for all full-time, permanent staff to date; as well as flex hours and flex location with co-working opportunities.


Lemonada Media Announces $8 Million in Series A Funding



Lemonada Media, the podcast network that presents humanity unfiltered, announced it has raised $8 million in Series A (second round) funding led by BDMI, a wholly owned subsidiary of the global media services and education company Bertelsmann.

Also included in this round are Madison Wells, Greycroft, Spring Point Partners LLC, Intuition Capital, and Owl Capital Group. New and existing individual investors include Wendy Millard, vice chair of MediaLink, and Stephanie Hannon, CTO for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, as well as Blue Collective, Lemonada’s lead seed investor and largest outside investor to date.

Co-founded by Jessica Cordova Kramer and Stephanie Wachs, Lemonada’s mission is to present authentic first-person narratives that highlight the diverse human experience and make us all feel less alone. Lemonada is entering its third year of operation with a growing slate of 20 original podcasts, reaching millions of listeners per month.

In 2021, Lemonada tripled its revenue, added 10 new shows, designed and trademarked an audio reality studio (BEING Studios) led by reality star veteran Kasey Barrett, and co-created original shows like Written Off with Jay Ells’ Black Bar Mitzvah and Believe Her with publishing house Spiegel & Grau, which launched at the top podcast charts. The network also has its eye on continued global expansion, after notching No. 1 shows in Europe with In Grio con Fra (Italy) and As Me with Sinéad (Ireland).

“Anyone working with Lemonada gets out of bed in the morning to help make the world a better place. This funding will allow our independent, diverse, women-led, audio-first network to not only grow our slate, but to expand our team, brand, and organizational partnerships, and creator community,” says Lemonada CEO Cordova Kramer. “In addition to or KPIs around audience and revenue, one goal during this time is to keep a keen eye on diversity, with the intention of reaching new audiences in the U.S. and beyond.”

“This is a thrilling moment for Lemonada, allowing our staff, hosts and partners to keep innovating, reach larger audiences with our podcasts, and find ways to bring our community together at live and virtual events” says Chief Creative Officer Wittles Wachs. “More podcasts, yes, but also expanding outreach and bringing more diverse talent and staff into the network, and more partnerships with brands who are looking to make life less with us.”

Lemonada was founded in 2019 after Jess (an early producer with Crooked Media) & Steph (an author, voice actress and theater director) connected after learning they had both lost their beloved little brothers to opioid overdoses. The company’s first podcast, Last Day, chronicles the opioid crisis in America by zooming in on the last day of Stefano Cordova Jr.’s life, and evolves to take a broader view of the complex epidemic.

While co-creating that series, Wittles Wachs and Cordova Kramer saw a broader opportunity to make life suck less, one podcast at a time, by building a network. The now-41 person full-time staff is concentrated in NYC, LA, Twin Cities and working flexibly across the country.


Lemonada Media Launches BEING Studio



Lemonada Media, the podcast network that presents humanity unfiltered, announces the launch of BEING Studios to create groundbreaking new audio series of what it’s like to “be” someone else. Reality television expert Kasey Barrett (The Real World, Kardashians, Born This Way) has been named Executive Producer of BEING Studios.

“A first for listeners, Lemonada’s BEING series are part doc-reality and audio-first podcasts. Think: reality TV meets podcasting,” said Kasey Barrrett, BEING Studio’s Executive Producer. “Through thoughtful and entertaining narrative storytelling, BEING Studios will offer listeners intimate, first-person access into worlds and people they may not otherwise know.”

“We’re excited to break new ground with Kasey and offer our audience an immersive audio experience that reveals what it’s literally like to walk around in someone else’s shoes,” said Stephanie Wittels Wachs, Lemonada’s Chief Content Officer and co-founder. “In alignment with Lemonada’s award-winning slate of podcasts, BEING Studios creates opportunities for racial empathy building by sharing how it feels to operate and live in different environments,” adds Lemonada CEO and co-founder Jessica Cordova Kramer.

BEING Studios goes into production this fall. Its first series launches in spring 2022. Lemonada is seeking a full time Supervising Producer and Associate Producer to join the BEING team.


Lemonada Media Launched Lemonada Premium on Apple Podcast Subscriptions



Lemonada Media announced a new membership offering titled “Lemonada Premium,” the premier way to get your Lemonada, launching worldwide with Apple Podcast Subscriptions.

For one simple $4.99 per month, Lemonada Premium members will enjoy access to our full slate of original podcasts, including Last Day, Add to Cart, Good Sex, The Cost of Care, and more, plus:

  • Early access to listen to select new series
  • Exclusive and bonus content
  • Behind the scenes access to Lemonada talent
  • Discounts on tickets for special events and Lemonada merchandise

“Lemonada Premium is a golden opportunity for our diverse host community to develop a deeper relationship with their listeners,” said Stephanie Wittels Wachs, Lemonada’s Chief Content Officer and co-founder. “Listeners on Apple Podcasts will be able to get even more from their Lemonada experiences and support the work that we do to make life suck less.”

“We’re grateful to the innovative team at Apple for supporting high-end, world-shaping content and forging a new path for monetization, said Lemonada CEO and co-founder Jessica Cordova Kramer. “We’re excited to be part of Apple Podcasts Subscriptions from day one.”

Lemonada Premium will be accessible as a new channel on Apple Podcasts – making it easy for listeners to find all of Lemonada’s series and offerings in one place. Lemonada’s podcasts will continue to be offered on other platforms.