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The promoter, producer and agent was responsible for bringing Sammy Davis Jnr, Tom Jones, the Rolling Stones and the musicals Hair and Jesus Christ Superstar down under
By IQ on 05 Jul 2018
Harry M. Miller, the New Zealand-born promoter and self-described “super agent” who brought some of the biggest names in popular music to Australia over a five-decade career, has passed away aged 84.
Born in Auckland in 1934, Miller moved across the Tasman in 1963, establishing Pan Pacific Productions with Keith and Dennis Wong. With Pan Pacific, he promoted shows by the likes of Judy Garland, Sammy Davis Jnr, Sarah Vaughan, Dizzy Gillespie, Ella Fitzgerald, Chubby Checker, Louis Armstrong, Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones and the Rolling Stones, introducing the international stars to “isolated local audiences hungry to be part of the international music scene”, according to his Harry M. Miller Group (HMMG) biography.
He was also among the first impresarios to bring major live rock operas to Australia, starting with Hair in 1969 and continuing with Jesus Christ Superstar (1972 and 1992) and the Rocky Horror Show (1974).
Miller briefly flirted with ticketing as the decade wore on, establishing Computicket in 1978. The company collapsed in 1982 after he was found guilty of misappropriating A$728,000, for which he spent ten months in prison.
After focusing on theatre throughout the rest of the ’80s and ’90s, Miller retired in 2009 and released his memoir, Harry M. Miller: Confessions of a Not-So-Secret Agent, the same year.
He is survived by his five children and his partner, Simmone Logue. According to a short statement from HMMG, Miller’s showbiz management company, he died “peacefully in Sydney” yesterday, with Logue, “daughters Justine, Brook and Lauren and their mother, Wendy”, by his side.
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