Willie Nelson, live at 35,000 feet

The singer’s Austin City Limits concert is broadcast live to American Airlines passengers by Viasat

Willie Nelson
Willie Nelson live on Austin City Limits, Nov 19, 2018. The performance was streamed live to American Airlines passengers using Viasat’s in-flight Wi-Fi technology. Photo copyright KLRU by Scott Newton

It’s not every day airline passengers cruising at 35,000 feet get to see and hear music legend Willie Nelson and the Family performing ‘Always on My Mind’ live in Austin, Texas. But that’s an experience American Airlines passengers enjoyed on Nov. 19.

American Airlines (AA) partnered with Viasat as we pushed a live feed of the Willie Nelson at Austin City Limits concert out to American’s Viasat-connected aircraft for the first time.

Both companies are working together to push the boundaries of in-flight entertainment and enhance the customer journey in new and exciting ways. We hope to do many more of these with AA in the future, and are so grateful to Willie Nelson and the Austin City Limits team for helping us to launch this initiative with a genuinely spellbinding performance.

The American Airlines in-flight entertainment app

Delivering a great passenger experience

“We are so excited to partner with Viasat for an industry-first live-streamed event in-flight,” said Brian Richardson, Director of IFEC Marketing for AA. “We are delighted that Willie Nelson, a true American icon, and our relationship with Austin City Limits made this such a special and hugely enjoyable event. We continue to work together with Viasat to create the best experiences in the air for our valued customers in new and unexpected ways to highlight the amazing Viasat Wi-Fi experience.”

With over 200 album releases and his instantly recognizable voice, sound and repertoire, Willie Nelson was an ideal choice for the first live stream on AA. In Austin, he performed many of his classics, including “Mama, Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys,” “Whiskey River” and a couple of oh-so-appropriate covers: “Fly Me to the Moon” and “I’ll Fly Away.”

More special experiences to come for AA passengers

With Viasat’s satellite technology, AA was able to create a live stream of Willie Nelson’s hits to every passenger on every Viasat-connected AA plane in the air during the concert. No buffering, no congestion — just the same great internet experience we expect while on the ground. Viasat’s customer success team looks forward to delivering many more great, live events to American Airlines passengers.

How do we do it? Learn more about Viasat connected services for commercial aviation at viasat.com/airlines

Austin City Limits concert
American Airlines and Viasat teams prepare to enjoy the Willie Nelson concert in Austin. (L to R: Kelsey Hughes, Brian Richardson, Adam Oxman, Vy Duong and Isabella Lenhoff)
Isabella Lenhoff
About Isabella Lenhoff 2 Articles
As the marketing specialist for Viasat’s commercial aviation business, Isabella Lenhoff supports the needs of airline customers around the globe. Her focus is ensuring airlines get everything they need to deliver the best Wi-Fi in the sky to their passengers.