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Continuing a series of interviews with the 2022 New Bosses, IQ speaks to Benji Fritzenschaft, a talent buyer at DreamHaus (DE)
By IQ on 18 Oct 2022
The 15th edition of IQ Magazine’s New Bosses was published in IQ 114 this month, revealing 20 of the most promising 30-and-unders in the international live music business.
To get to know this year’s cohort a little better, IQ conducted interviews with each one of 2022’s New Bosses, discovering their greatest inspirations and pinpointing the reasons for their success.
Catch up on the previous New Bosess 2022 interview with Agustina Cabo from Move Concerts here. The series continues with Benji Fritzenschaft, a talent buyer at Dreamhaus in Germany.
Whilst studying sports journalism in Hamburg, Fritzenschaft began a hip-hop podcast that opened a door for him into the music industry. He started working as a social media creator at Sony in 2019, and shortly after applied for a job at Goodlive, where he landed a job as part of the splash! Festival booking team, which resulted in his move to Berlin. He also helped promote the German tours of Goodlive’s hip-hop artists such as Stormzy, Skepta, Dave, and Trippie Redd & Suicideboys, and the company used his expertise for booking its domestic hip-hop festivals (Heroes).
In May 2022, Fritzenschaft was hired by DreamHaus as a talent buyer, working on tours for 070 Shake, Aitch, Kid Cudi, and Jack Harlow. He also books talent for DreamHaus’s festivals and helps develop new events.
You studied sports journalism at university. Are there any lessons from your studies that have been useful in your career?
I feel like my time at university helped me prepare for this job – especially the journalism part. For example, I learned how marketing works, how to get the information you need, and how important a good network is. In addition to that, there is lots of competition in sports and journalism, as well as the music business, so in hindsight, I feel like this prepared me.
Your podcast opened doors for you. What advice would you give to anyone trying to find a job in live music?
If you are passionate about music and want to work in live music but cannot seem to find an entrance, go the extra mile: Start your own project (podcast, blog, etc.) and invest your time. Show the world you have expertise and why you would be a good addition to any team.
As a new boss, what one thing would you change to make the live music industry a better place?
I feel like, for my generation, sustainability is more important than ever before – mental health, diversity in festival line-ups, as well as in the office, and taking care of the environment… We all know there will be competition in the live music industry, but I have a feeling that sometimes people take it too far. I believe it should never be taken personally, as business is never personal.
“If you are passionate about music and want to work in live music but cannot seem to find an entrance, go the extra mile”
What has been the biggest challenge for you and the DreamHaus team as the business has emerged from the pandemic restrictions?
You probably know Germany’s way of handling the situation with loads of restrictions, so finally being able to have shows again was great. There is uncertainty about the upcoming winter, so hopefully we can continue having regular concerts throughout the colder times. Let me be fully honest: after months in my home office, it took a while for me to get used to the regular office workflow again.
Where would you like to see yourself in five years’ time?
I got into the industry three years ago and just moved from Goodlive to DreamHaus. With that move, I also got promoted from assistant to promoter, so I just want to keep my momentum going and build my roster. In general, my goal is to continue to do my work, learn, and evolve – personally as well as career-wise – and then who knows what the future will bring.
What has been the highlight of your career, so far?
There have been a couple: After years of attending splash! as a fan, the moment I was backstage at the festival as an official was pretty cool. The first big shows were nice as well: Stormzy before Covid, Dave on the first day after restrictions were gone, and selling out our Kid Cudi show within a couple of days. In addition to that, LUIS – the first domestic act I signed – just started his first tour, which is basically sold out.
“My goal is to continue to do my work, learn, and evolve – personally as well as career-wise”
Where is your favourite venue?
The splash! Festival site at Ferropolis will always have a special place in my heart. For concert venues, there is of course Berghain in Berlin where we had great shows with Little Simz and Bas. A concert at Berghain is always special. Uebel & Gefährlich in Hamburg and Club Bahnhof Ehrenfeld in Cologne are also among my favourites.
The hip-hop world is a tight community. Who are your best friends or allies at other companies in your day-to-day work?
I am still friends with a lot of people at Goodlive and Bomber Der Herzen. I am also constantly speaking to Cedric Icaasain who manages artists and runs a club in Cologne. I also want to mention Malte von der Lanken and Andrej Malogajski from Mainland Music. Regarding domestic acts, Greg from ARKTIK Management and Steph from Atlantic Germany are my guys. Special shout-out to Thomas ‘The Don’ Schlett as well.
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