AEG Presents unveils new outdoor concert series
AEG Presents is launching a new outdoor concert series at Warwick Castle in the UK, called The Castle Sessions.
The inaugural sessions comprise four concerts between 4–7 July, headlined by The Darkness, JLS, Craig David presents TS5 and Mika respectively. More acts will be announced in the coming weeks.
The Castle Sessions marks JLS’s return to the medieval castle 14 years after their 2010 concert there with Diana Vickers.
“Warwick Castle is such a unique setting and fans across the UK have shown their appetite for seeing the biggest acts in these special places,” say AEG promoters Chloe Pean and Rachel Lloyd in a joint statement.
“Fans across the UK have shown their appetite for seeing the biggest acts in these special places”
Liam Bartlett, general manager of Warwick Castle, adds: “We are so excited to welcome these artists to Warwick Castle as part of The Castle Sessions and hope that this event, along with others in 2024 will bring lots of new visitors into this magnificent town.”
Last year, Warwick Castle saw concerts from the likes of Gwen Stefani, Sophie Ellis-Bextor, UB40, Bastille, Nile Rodgers & Chic, Rag’n’Bone Man, Kaiser Chiefs and Will Young.
Meanwhile, AEG Presents has announced that The Postal Service and Death Cab for Cutie will co-headline Sunday 25 August at All Points East in London.
The show celebrates 20 years of their albums Give Up and Transatlanticism and marks The Postal Service’s first performance in London in a decade.
The two bands join previously announced headliners Loyle Carner (17 August) and LCD Soundsystem (23 August).
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European festivals expand 2024 lineups
Rock en Seine, Rock Werchter, Primavera Porto, NorthSide, Bilbao BBK, Paaspop, Sweden Rock Festival, North Festival, Best Kept Secret and Release Athens are among the European festivals that are taking shape for 2024.
AEG Presents’ Rock en Seine has detailed its 20th-anniversary edition, which coincides with the Olympic and Paralympic Games in Paris.
Fred again., LCD Soundsystem, Måneskin, Massive Attack, PJ Harvey, The Offspring and The Smile are all set to headline the event, slated for 22–24 August at Domaine National de Saint-Cloud in France’s capital city.
Moonshine, The Hive Jungle, Olivia Dean, Soulwax, The Kills, Inhaler, Blonde Redhead, Róisin Murphy and Zaho De Sagazan are also on the bill for the 40,000-capacity event.
With Rock en Seine taking place just days before the start of the Summer Paralympic Games, the festival will curate a programme titled Cultural Olympiad, alongside four other major cultural festivals (Festival International de la BD d’Angoulême, Festival de Cannes, Festival d’Avignon, and Rencontres photographiques d’Arles).
Rock Werchter has added 11 new names to its 2024 lineup, which already includes headliners Foo Fighters, Dua Lipa and Måneskin
The Cultural Olympiad of Paris 2024 aims to foster dialogue between sports, culture, and Olympic and Paralympic values throughout the territory, according to a release.
Meanwhile, Rock Werchter has added 11 new names to its 2024 lineup, which already includes headliners Foo Fighters, Dua Lipa and Måneskin.
DEUS, Snow Patrol, Yungblud and Sum 41, The Last Dinner Party, Róisín Murphy, Nothing But Thieves, Avril Lavigne and Khruangbin, Michael Kiwanuka and Royal Blood will perform at Belgium’s biggest festival next year.
The Live Nation Belgium-promoted event will return to Festivalpark, Werchter, between 4–7 July 2024.
Primavera Sound Porto has also unveiled the poster for its 2024 edition, a week after announcing the Barcelona instalment.
Lana del Rey and SZA top a female-dominated bill, as Primavera continues to pave the way for gender-balanced festival lineups
Lana del Rey and SZA top a female-dominated bill, as Primavera continues to pave the way for gender-balanced festival lineups.
Mitski, PJ Harvey, Kim Petras, Pulp, The National, Justice, Ethical Cain and This Is The Kit are also among the 48 names due to perform at the 11th edition, scheduled for 6–8 June 2024 at Parque da Cidade, Porto.
Elsewhere in Portugal, the organisers of North Festival announced that next year it will move from Alfândega do Porto to Parque de Serralves, taking place on the 24–26 May.
Keane are the first name announced for the 2024 edition, returning to the country on the 20th anniversary of their breakthrough debut album, Hopes and Fears, which includes ‘Somewhere Only We Know’ and ‘Everybody’s Changing’.
“Serralves, due to the quality of the infrastructure, large spaces and excellent location – a premium space in the heart of Invicta – is a natural choice for a festival that is also premium,” says Jorge Veloso, director of the promoter Vibes & Beats, “We feel that this is a change that will allow us to raise the quality of the experience offered to our audience.”
The organisers of North Festival announced that next year it will move from Alfândega do Porto to Parque de Serralves
In Denmark, NorthSide festival has unveiled the first 12 names for next year’s instalment, including Massive Attack, Troye Sivan, Unkendt Kunstner, Coi Leray and Kaytranada.
Kaizers Orchestra, Amyl & The Sniffers, Shame, Barselona, August Høyen, VETO, 070 Shake will also appear at the Down The Drain-promoted event, set for Eskelunden in Aarhus from 6–8 June 2024.
Live Nation’s Sweden Rock has added 18 names to the 2024 poster, after previously confirming Judas Priest, Alice Cooper, Parkway Drive, Avantasia, Bruce Dickinson and Electric Callboy.
Joining those acts are Five Finger Death Punch, Rival Sons, Steel Panther, Graveyard, Beast In Black, Gloryhammer, Thy Art Is Murder and Ice Nine Kills.
Primal Fear, High On Fire, Richie Kotzen, Riverside, The Baboon Show, Mystic Prophecy, Dewolff, Vicious Rumors, Kebnekajse and Prins Svart will also appear at the Sölvesborg event between 5–8 June 2024.
Best Kept Secret is this year introducing New Generation tickets, offering those aged 21 or younger a 30% discount on a weekend ticket
Massive Attack are also set to headline Bilbao BBK, slated for 11–13 July 2024 in Kobetamendi, Bilbao, Spain.
The Prodigy, Massive Attack, Jungle, Overmono, Ezra Collective, Floating Points live, Underworld, Noname, JPEGMAFIA, Jordan Rakei, Death From Above 1979 and Parcels are also on the lineup for the Last Tour-promoted event.
In the Netherlands, the 2024 lineups for Paaspop and Best Kept Secret are taking shape.
The former has announced acts including Editors, Tom Grennan, Tiësto, Die Antwoord, August Burns Red for the 29–31 March event in Schijndel, North Brabant.
Best Kept Secret has announced the first 63 names for its 10th edition. Disclosure, Justice and PJ Harvey, among others, will come to the Beekse Bergen during the weekend of 7–9 June 2024.
Promoters Friendly Fire is this year introducing New Generation tickets, offering those aged 21 or younger a 30% discount on a weekend ticket.
Elsewhere, Greece’s Release Athens has secured 2024 concerts with Pulp, Massive Attack, The Smile, Judas Priest and Bruce Dickinson at Water Plaza across June and July.
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Local promoters hail record Ed Sheeran sales
Local, independent promoters have spoken to IQ about how they’re breaking ground in their markets with record ticket sales for Ed Sheeran’s 2024 European tour.
The European leg of Sheeran’s + – = ÷ x (Mathematics) Tour is due to kick off on 8 June 2024 in Italy, making 20 stops at a mix of stadiums and festivals across the continent.
The first stadium stop on the AEG Presents promoted-outing will be at Ta’ Qali National Park (cap. 30,000), marking the 32-year-old’s first-ever concert in Malta.
According to one of the show’s local promoters, Nigel Camilleri at NNG Promotions, the 26 June 2024 concert has broken “all records” in the island country.
“The number of tickets in an hour, total number of ticket sales in one day, as well as total gross amount of ticket sales in an hour and in a day,” lists Camilleri, who is promoting the gig alongside AEG and Greatt.
“Hopefully, this will open more doors which were previously closed or only ajar”
“The adrenaline rush when the ticket sales opened was indescribable,” he continues. “It’s not often, at least in Malta, that one gets to promote a concert of an artist who appeals to such a wide-ranging audience.”
Camilleri says hosting a star of Sheeran’s size helps to put Malta – which is isolated from mainland Europe – on the map for other blockbuster tours.
“It is a great triumph for us because we have proven that the Maltese market can sustain an A-level artist such as Ed Sheeran,” he adds. “We have been working towards and building up to this moment for many years and admittedly there was an element of luck with the stars aligning for it to happen.
“As a company, it is a major feather in our cap and hopefully, this will open more doors which were previously closed or only ajar.”
Bulgarian promoter FEST Team is also hoping the success of Sheeran’s show at Vasil Levski Stadium in Sofia (31 August) will be a calling card for other A-list artists.
“[We hope] more prominent artists will acknowledge Bulgaria as a substantial market with tour potential”
“Our aspiration is that the success of this event will encourage more prominent artists to acknowledge Bulgaria and the Balkan region as a substantial market with tour potential,” FEST Team’s Stefan Elenkov tells IQ.
The Sofia-based full-service promoter sold all 60,000 tickets to the Bulgaria date in the first 24 hours of the on-sale. It beat the previous record set in 2009 by Madonna who sold 19,000 tickets in the first 24 hours for a 55,000-capacity show.
“This indeed is a truly remarkable achievement,” says Elenkov. “It is important to mention that a show of this magnitude hasn’t taken place in Bulgaria since 2009.”
Staging the biggest-ever concert in Bulgaria, which is yet to be included in the Schengen Area, hasn’t been without its challenges but Elenkov says his team has been “excited to embrace them”.
“After dedicating eight months to negotiations and detailed planning, we managed to successfully overcome various infrastructural and logistic challenges associated with the venue,” says Elenkov.
“Ticket Station Bulgaria is handling a show of such magnitude for the first time and has met the tour’s criteria”
“Anticipating Bulgaria and Romania’s inclusion in the Schengen area, we expect even fewer logistical challenges, making future tour planning considerably more structured. The routing Budapest – Bucharest – Sofia – Athens—would essentially become practically borderless.”
Another source of pride for FEST Team is the reported absence of tickets for Sheeran’s Bulgaria date on Viagogo.
“This demonstrates our success in implementing stringent security measures, ensuring that only real people have bought tickets for the show,” adds Elenkov. “This marks an important milestone – Ticket Station Bulgaria is handling a show of such magnitude for the first time and has precisely met the tour’s criteria.”
Sheeran’s team has long taken an aggressive stance against the secondary ticketing market, opting to use 100% mobile digital ticketing technology to keep tickets in the hands of fans.
The tour’s local promoters in Lithuania also have a lot to celebrate after sales for Sheeran’s two 2024 dates in the country broke “all previous entertainment sales records” across the Baltic states.
“By selling the most tickets of any artist in the Baltics, Sheeran has set yet another record”
According to L Tips Agency – which is organising Sheeran’s concerts in the Baltics for the third time – the first concert sold out in just over 24 hours the second is already more than 50% sold out, nine months in advance.
Provided both dates in Lithuania sell out, Sheeran will perform to 90,000 fans across the 3 and 4 August at Darius and Girėnas Stadium in Kaunas.
“In 2019, he set the record for the most visited international artist show of all time in Latvia with an attendance of approximately 50,000 people,” says Gints Putnins, owner of L Tips Agency. “Now a new record has been set for the whole of the Baltics!”
The Agency, which is one of the largest independent promoters in the Baltic States, is promoting the concert alongside FKP Scorpio.
Folkert Koopmans, founder & CEO of FKP Scorpio, adds: “By selling the most tickets of any artist in the Baltics, Ed Sheeran has set yet another record. We’re proud and happy to be promoting the shows and couldn’t have done so without the support of all local stakeholders and our partner agencies. L Tips Agency’s work has been invaluable in making the second-ever music concert in Kaunas stadium possible. We’re already looking forward to seeing everything coming together in August 2024!”
The 32-year-old’s forthcoming Dubai concerts could become the best-selling shows in UAE history
Sheeran’s record-breaking streak doesn’t stop at independent promoters, nor does it stop in Europe. As previously reported in IQ, the 32-year-old’s forthcoming Dubai concerts could become the best-selling shows in UAE history, according to All Thing Live Middle East CEO Thomas Ovesen.
The British singer-songwriter is due to play the Sevens Stadium from 19-20 January 2024 in what are being called the largest open-air concerts ever to take place in Dubai.
The dates, which will see Sheeran perform “in the round”, will be his first in the Middle East since playing at the city’s Autism Rocks Arena in November 2017, which attracted a sell-out 23,272 crowd.
Last month, Sheeran concluded the North American leg of his Mathematics tour, with the final date on 28 October at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Sheeran is represented by Marty Diamond and Ash Lewis at Wasserman for US and Canada, and Jon Ollier at One Finiix Live for the rest of the world.
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The Rolling Stones announce North American tour
The Rolling Stones have announced a 16-city stadium tour of the US and Canada for 2024.
The legendary band, who released Hackney Diamonds – their first album of original material since 2005 – last month, say they will perform their most popular hits and “fan favourite deep cuts” on the run, along with music from their new LP.
Presented by AEG/Concerts West, the tour will stop at Houston’s NRG Stadium (28 April), New Orleans Jazz Fest (2 May), State Farm Stadium in Glendale (7 May), Allegiant Stadium, Las Vegas (11 May), Lumen Field, Seattle (15 May), MetLife Stadium, New Jersey (23 May) and Gillette Stadium, Foxborough (30 May).
It will then continue on to Orlando’s Camping World Stadium (3 June), Mercedes-Benz Arena, Atlanta (7 June), Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia (11 June), Cleveland Browns Stadium (15 June), Empower Field at Mile High, Denver (20 June), Chicago Soldier Field (27 June), BC Place, Vancouver (5 July), Los Angeles’ SoFi Stadium (10 July) and Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara (17 July).
“It’s crazy how good they are and how they just bring it every single time”
Speaking to IQ last year upon the conclusion of the group’s 60th anniversary tour, Concerts West boss John Meglen said: “I haven’t heard anybody say anything’s stopping, so we’re always there and ready. It’s for Joyce [Smyth, manager] and the guys to figure that out and, if and when, it’d be a blessing again.
“A lot of what makes it work is when you have guys like Opie [longtime Stones production manager Dale Skjerseth], a tremendous, amazing band and then the guys playing better and better. It’s crazy how good they are and how they just bring it every single time.”
AEG/Concerts West worked with a host of local promoters on the 2022 Sixty European tour, including Doctor Music/Live Nation Spain (Wanda Metropolitano, Madrid); FKP Scorpio (Olympic Stadium, Munich/Veltins Arena, Gelsenkirchen/Waldbühne, Berlin); Di and Gi/Live Nation Italy (San Siro, Milan); Mojo Concerts (Johan Cruyff Arena, Amsterdam); Greenhouse Talent (Kingbaudoin Stadium, Brussels); Barracuda Music (Ernst Happel Stadium, Vienna); Live Nation France (Hippodrome de Longchamps, Paris) and Live Nation Sweden (Friends Arena, Stockholm).
The run grossed US$121,326,763 at the box office from 712,641 ticket sales.
Jay Marciano confirmed for ILMC Breakfast Meeting
AEG Presents chairman and CEO Jay Marciano has been confirmed for The (Late) Breakfast Meeting at ILMC 36.
One of the most respected executives in the entertainment industry today, Marciano is responsible for overseeing AEG’s tour and concert promotion, facilities, and digital divisions (including AXS).
He oversees a portfolio of over 100 live music venues; global tours for artists such as Taylor Swift, Elton John, Blackpink, the Rolling Stones and Justin Bieber; and festivals including Coachella, BST Hyde Park, Electric Forest, All Points East and the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival.
Having held senior leadership roles at Universal Concerts, Madison Square Garden Entertainment, and having previously run AEG’s European operations, Marciano is an executive with keen international awareness, and a clear vision of where the business is headed.
ILMC 36’s (Late) Breakfast Meeting will also be the last, with host Ed Bicknell hanging up his microphone after 22 years in the role. During his tenure, Bicknell has interviewed some of the biggest names in the music business across management, promotion, agencies and the artist fraternity, including Irving Azoff, Roger Daltrey, Nile Rodgers, Emma Banks, Arthur Fogel, Paul McGuinness, Marc Geiger and many more.
Bicknell is a highly successful music manager best known for working with Mark Knopfler and Dire Straits, Gerry Rafferty, Bryan Ferry, Scott Walker and The Blue Nile.
“I’m thrilled to return to ILMC and look forward to a lively conversation with Ed”
“With Ed’s humour, candour and expert knowledge of the business, the Breakfast Meeting interviews have been a highlight of ILMC’s programme for two decades, so it’s immensely fitting that we bring the series to a close with Jay; one of live music’s most highly respected individuals,” says ILMC head Greg Parmley.
“I’m thrilled to return to ILMC and look forward to a lively conversation with Ed,” says Marciano. “It’s a monumental time for our business, and while it’s always nice to get together as an industry and talk about where we’ve been, I think the most critical issue to address is where we are going. I hope to be able to bring that to centre stage at the Breakfast Meeting. Wait! Do promoters actually eat breakfast?!”
Bicknell adds: “After 22 years of vibrant, exciting, intellectually stimulating and occasionally humorous banter from me it’s time to wrap it up. And as Jay’s keen to explore where we’re all going, I’m hoping he brings a map!”
The (Late) Breakfast Meeting takes place at 4.45pm on Thursday 29 February 2024 as part of the 36th International Live Music Conference (ILMC). The conference will welcome over 1,400 of the world’s top live music professionals from over 50 countries to the Royal Lancaster Hotel in London from 27 Feb-1 March.
Full information about ILMC 2024, The Arthur Awards, Futures Forum, London Calling and the new Touring Entertainment LIVE day is at 36.ilmc.com.
Ed Sheeran’s UAE shows tipped to make history
Ed Sheeran’s forthcoming Dubai concerts could become the best-selling shows in UAE history, according to All Thing Live Middle East CEO Thomas Ovesen.
The British singer-songwriter brings his + – = ÷ x (Mathematics) Tour to The Sevens Stadium from 19-20 January 2024 in what are being called the largest open-air concerts ever to take place in Dubai.
The dates, which will see the 32-year-old perform “in the round”, will be Sheeran’s first in the Middle East since playing the city’s Autism Rocks Arena in November 2017, which attracted a sell-out 23,272 crowd.
“Not since 2017 has the Dubai market hosted such large scale outdoor concerts promoted on merits of ticket sales,” Ovesen tells IQ. “So it’s with great satisfaction we don’t just put on two Ed Sheeran concerts here in January, but again together with AEG Presents get to work with Ed and his management – this time showcasing his incredible 360° production for the first time in the Middle East.”
The events, which will feature support from Calum Scott, are backed by Dubai Calendar and Coca-Cola Arena, with tickets going on sale on Friday (9 November).
“It’s not only a massive event and achievement for Dubai, but one that hopefully reflects also a return to more large-scale outdoor shows”
“With a combined capacity of more than 60.000 tickets these shows could well break the record of the best-selling UAE concert ever. It’s not only a massive event and achievement for Dubai, but one that hopefully reflects also a return to more large-scale outdoor shows and an increased live entertainment offering in our market.”
European live entertainment group All Things Live launched in the Middle East earlier this year following successful collaborations with Ovesen’s TOP Entertainment. Ovesen had previously brought acts including Justin Bieber, The Eagles, Guns ‘N Roses, Jennifer Lopez, Elton John and Ed Sheeran to the region, and launched festivals such as RedFestDXB and Fiesta De Los Muertos.
The promoter’s recent highlights included a rare sell-out for last weekend’s Bryan Adams’ concert at Dubai’s 17,000-cap Coca-Cola Arena.
“I think the arena has had a few other sell-out shows this year including Hanz Zimmer and some Arabic and Indian artists,” Ovesen told IQ last month. “But the UAE is a relatively small market with less than 10 million residents and more than 200 nationalities, so it is hard to pick an event or artist that will pull from all the various communities and sell beyond 10,000 tickets.
“It’s rare that shows in the UAE sell out and, indeed, for large-scale shows in the few arenas here. So for an established touring artist who has visited the market many times in the past and played in smaller capacities, to completely sell out Coca-Cola Arena two months prior to the show date is unheard of. Our last sold-out show at the venue was with 50 Cent back in September 2022 and it only sold out the day before the show.”
The Mathematics Tour was the fifth highest-grossing worldwide in H1 2023
The Mathematics Tour was the fifth highest-grossing worldwide in Pollstar‘s H1 2023 rankings, selling just over one million tickets to earn $105.3 million. Back in June, Sheeran broke the attendance record at New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium in the USA, pulling in 89,106 people to surpass the 88,491 fans drawn by U2 for their 360° Tour in 2011.
He also broke his own attendance record at Melbourne Cricket Ground in March by playing to more than 100,000 fans on consecutive nights, and New Zealand’s Sky Stadium, where he drew 48,000 fans. He also set a new ticket sales record in Denmark, shifting 160,000 tickets to four shows in the capital city of Copenhagen last year.
Sheeran, who will tour Asia and Europe in 2024, will also headline Rock in Rio Lisbon’s 20th anniversary edition, and is also slated to appear at other festivals including Lucca Summer Festival (Italy), Hurricane & Southside (Germany) and Stavernfestivalen (Norway).
His previous 255 show ÷ (Divide) run from 2017-19 was the highest-grossing tour ever before, generating $776.2 million, before being surpassed by Elton John’s Farewell Yellow Brick Road Tour earlier this year. Sheeran is represented by Marty Diamond of Wasserman Music in North America and Jon Ollier of One Fiinix Live for the rest of the world.
Paul Tollett on Coachella’s past, present & future
Goldenvoice boss Paul Tollett has opened up on the evolution of Coachella and offered a glimpse into the future of the event in a new interview.
Bad Bunny, Blackpink, Frank Ocean and Skrillex, Fred Again.. and Four Tet headlined the most recent edition at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California, back in April, which also featured acts such as Calvin Harris, Gorillaz, Burna Boy, Blink-182, the Chemical Brothers, Blondie, Rosalia, Eric Prydz, The Kid Laroi, Charli XCX and Björk.
The US festival’s co-founder Tollett was joined by AEG’s global touring SVP Michael Harrison for an ‘in conversation’ session at the inaugural SXSW Sydney last week in Australia.
Tollett revealed that Coachella was unlikely to grow beyond its current 150,000-capacity – in person at least.
“I don’t know it needs to be bigger,” said Tollett, who highlighted the event’s long-running livestreaming deal with YouTube as a means for it to expand its audience without increasing on-site capacity.
YouTube livestreamed performances from all six stages at Coachella, on both weekends of the festival, for the first time this year and Tollett credits the partnership – along with international headliners such as Blackpink – with extending the brand’s global reach.
“Things have changed so much now, people want to book a year in advance. I don’t want to, I want to wait and see what’s out there”
“All of a sudden you have the biggest artist in that region. And what it does is, it just gets everyone watching from that area. Coachella wasn’t really that well known in Asia. Now, everyone in Indonesia follows it, not just Korea. It became a thing where no matter what country you’re in, you could watch it like it’s your show.”
Tollett said the first two Coachellas, held in 1999 and 2001, lost a million dollars after attracting just 17,000 and 21,000 fans respectively, reports Audience Republic.
In its first decade, Tollett added, he didn’t start booking the line-up until around six months before the event, and still believed in not planning too far ahead of time.
“It’s a rolling 90-day masterplan,” he said. “I haven’t even finished booking next April’s show, and it announces in January. Things have changed so much now, people want to book a year in advance. I don’t want to, I want to wait and see what’s out there.
“I never say, ‘In the next three years, I’m changing it to this,’ it just changes. As it goes you look back and go, ‘Oh it changed over the last three years.’ You do it by the music. The music is leading the culture. You just start seeing trends when you look back.”
Coachella is scheduled to return over two weekends from 12-14 & 19-21 April 2024.
“There’s a growing trend out there between managers, agents, promoters, who like to do these multi-year, multi-cycle deals”
LA-based Australian promoter Harrison, meanwhile, who made the switch from Frontier Touring five years ago, discussed how global touring deals had changed the live music landscape.
“There’s a growing trend out there between managers, agents, promoters, who like to do these multi-year, multi-cycle deals,” he said. “What that allows you to do is have longer periods of time where a promoter is engaged with an artist, and you can really get involved and invest in their growth campaigns by touring.”
A celebration of the tech, film and music industries South By Southwest (SXSW) made its debut in Sydney, Australia from 15-22 October, and featured 400 sessions and more than 700 speakers from around the world, including Nicole Kidman, Naomi Watts, Chance the Rapper and Black Mirror creator Charlie Brooker.
In addition, the SXSW Sydney Music Festival took place across locations including the Hollywood Hotel, the Lansdowne and Lord Gladstone, hosting more than 250 artists and over 300 performances.
The official annual Asia Pacific instalment of the US conference and showcase festival, SXSW Sydney was a collaboration with promoter TEG, the NSW government and tourism agency Destination NSW.
The next edition of SXSW’s flagship US event is set for Austin, Texas between 8-16 March 2024.
AEG Presents ups Rich Schaefer to president, global touring
AEG Presents has promoted Rich Schaefer to president of global touring, following the departure of Gary Gersh.
Schaefer will oversee all aspects of the company’s worldwide touring deals, operations, and talent relations, and will report to Jay Marciano, chairman and CEO of AEG Presents and COO of AEG.
He will also be joining the company’s executive committee in conjunction with his promotion.
Schaefer previously held the title of senior vice president, global touring, and joined AEG Presents in 2018 to help build and develop the newly created division.
According to the company, he has played a key role in many of AEG Presents’ touring partnerships, having helped sign and promote artists such as Kane Brown, Kacey Musgraves, Zach Bryan, Leon Bridges, Carin Leon, Hugh Jackman, Tame Impala, and Maggie Rogers, among others.
“Rich has a wealth of experience across every level of the concert business”
“Rich has a wealth of experience across every level of the concert business,” says Marciano. “His rapport with artists, managers and agents, along with his attention to detail and follow-through, have made him a critical member of our team. I’m thrilled to elevate him to president of global touring.”
Schaefer adds: “I am very excited to step into this new role leading global touring, and I’m extremely grateful for the support from Jay and everyone at AEG Presents. Our priority is to continue executing at the highest level for our clients, their teams and fans.”
Schaefer was a co-founder of LoyalT Management before joining AEG Presents. A New York native, Schaefer will continue to work out of the company’s offices there.
AEG Presents’ Global Touring team has promoted tours for Elton John, Blackpink, Tyler, The Creator, Luke Combs, Journey, $uicideboy$, John Mellencamp and more.
LIVE appoints radio DJ Steve Lamacq as chair
UK trade body LIVE has appointed radio DJ and live music advocate Steve Lamacq as its new chair.
Lamacq has been a mainstay of BBC Radio programming for over 25 years as co-presenter of The Evening Session on Radio 1 before moving to host 6 Music.
Having stepped back from presenting his drive-time show full-time after 18 years, Lamacq has “decided to steer his career in a new direction in an effort to promote, support and define the live music industry for generations to come”.
Also joining LIVE, as co-opted directors, are Charisse Beaumont of Black Lives in Music, Christine Osazuwa of Shoobs and Lucy Noble of AEG Presents.
The appointments come as LIVE welcomes its 16th member, the Musicians’ Union (The MU). Kelly Wood, National Organiser for Live Performance, will also join LIVE’s board on behalf of the MU’s community of over 33,000 musicians.
“The UK’s live music industry is world-class but faces obstacles in realising its true potential,” says Jon Collins, CEO of LIVE. “With a sector value of over £5.2 billion, the industry is one of our greatest, and most prized cultural exports.
“It is a terrific opportunity to be a part of the future of live music in this country”
“We are proud to support the entirety of the live music ecosystem and represent their interests and the appointment of music legend Steve Lamacq, The MU’s Kelly Wood, Charisse Beaumont, Christine Osazuwa and Lucy Noble to LIVE’s board will enable us to further extend the work we’re doing. Steve will bring to LIVE unrivalled recognition of the power of the UK’s live music industry along with the challenges it faces. We are honoured to have such notable industry figures sitting on our board who will be key to enabling our enviable live music industry to thrive.”
Lamacq, adds: “I am absolutely thrilled to have been offered the chance to work with an organisation which is right at the centre of live music in the UK. As someone whose life has been indelibly shaped by the gigs that I’ve seen, it is a terrific opportunity to be a part of the future of live music in this country, and to be given the responsibility for helping promote, support and define it for generations to come.
“It has been a very difficult time for everyone involved in live music in recent years, with Brexit, the pandemic, the cost-of-living crisis, rising energy bills for venues and many other challenges, which have affected everyone at all levels of the live music ecosystem. With that in mind there are many things we need to address whilst also looking forward to forging a more sustainable and inclusive industry.
“LIVE has already achieved a great deal through a number of important campaigns and I am excited about what we can achieve in the future. It will be a privilege to represent those across the entire spectrum of our sector.”
Kelly Wood, National Organiser for Live Performance at The MU, said, “This is a positive move for the sector and we are excited to join the LIVE board. Joining such a forward-thinking and dynamic organisation, whose priorities are closely aligned with our own will be critical to the industry. I hope that The MU’s presence on the LIVE board brings a new perspective and together with LIVE’s other member organisations, we will reinforce lobbying efforts and hold the Government to account to ensure the dynamism and potential of the sector is unleashed. This will better equip us to support our members working at all levels of the live sector, in terms of their local, national and international tours.”
Gary Gersh steps down at AEG Presents
Gary Gersh, president of global touring at AEG Presents, plans to step down after eight years at the company.
His departure was announced by AEG Presents chairman Jay Marciano, who broke the news to AEG staff in a memo.
Gersh’s former role will be filled by Rich Schaefer, who is currently the company’s senior vice president of global touring.
In his own letter addressed to staff, Gersh said: “I have made the very difficult choice to step away from my position here at AEG Presents. This was not a decision I came to lightly, as working alongside everyone at this company these past eight years has been a career highlight for me, but I’m excited about the prospects ahead and look forward to us crossing paths again in the future… I couldn’t be more proud to place the global touring division in the very capable hands of my longtime friend and partner in business Rich Schaefer.”
“This was not a decision I came to lightly, as working alongside everyone at this company has been a career highlight for me”
Marciano added: “Gary played a vital role in the development and growth of global touring; his energy, passion and initiative helped nurture an embryonic idea into a powerhouse team that has made a substantial impact on both our business specifically and the industry as a whole.”
Commenting on Schaefer’s new role, Marciano said: “Rich, who has been SVP of the division since joining the company in 2018, has an extensive resume and years of experience beyond his current duties here. He started his career in artist development at a record label before moving into management, where he spent two decades working across all aspects of artists’ careers while also developing a speciality in touring. He brings a thorough understanding of our business to the job and is looking forward to hitting the ground running and executing at the highest level on behalf of both global touring and AEG Presents. Rich will continue to be based out of New York, but we should all expect to be seeing more of him in Los Angeles.”
Gersh joined AEG in 2015 but he began his career in the 1980s, serving as an A&R exec at Geffen Records, where he played a key role in signing artists such as Sonic Youth and Nirvana to the label.
During the 1990s, Gersh led Capitol Records and launched G.A.S Entertainment with John Silva. A veteran talent manager, Gersh also led The Artist Organization, representing artists such as Lenny Kravitz and John Legend.