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Stormzy signs with WME

WME has signed Stormzy for representation in all areas.

The grime artist, real name Michael Omari, inked a worldwide deal with CAA only last year, having previously been a client of Primary Talent International.

The move, announced just days after the completion of CAA’s $750 million acquisition of ICM Partners, covers touring and brand partnerships and reunites the 28-year-old with his former agent at Primary, Craig D’Souza, who joined WME as partner in 2021.

“Stormzy is one of the UK’s most inspiring artists who has consistently stood up to address social injustices”

D’Souza, who brought a roster including Dave, Krept and Konan, J Hus, Jacob Banks and Headie One to WME’s London office, guided Stormzy’s live career from 250-capacity club shows in 2015 through to his 2019 Glastonbury headline performance and a sold-out world tour.  He will represent the star alongside WME co-head of music Lucy Dickins and agent Whitney Boateng, reports Music Week.

“A true spokesman of Black empowerment and social activism, Stormzy is one of the UK’s most inspiring artists who has consistently stood up to address social injustices, encouraging his fans and listeners alike to speak openly about their beliefs and fight for their rights,” says a WME statement.

Managed by #Merky co-founder Tobe Onwuka, Stormzy also headlined Reading & Leeds in 2021, and completed his first UK arena tour earlier this year.

His upcoming tour dates include slots at Weekend Festival Finland (2 July), Madrid’s Mad Cool (7 July), Portugal’s Nos Alive (8 July) and Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland (11 July), followed by an Australasian tour booked for November/December.

 


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CAA completes acquisition of ICM Partners

Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has completed its acquisition of ICM Partners (ICM).

The acquisition, announced last September, was initially planned to close by the end of 2021 but was delayed while the US department of justice (DOJ) investigated its impact on the entertainment industry.

The completion of the deal – valued at $750 million by Hollywood Reporter sources, brings together two of the leading global agencies in entertainment and sports, and is the second major development to impact the agency world in the space of three months, following Wasserman Music’s acquisition of Paradigm UK’s live music business, which was announced in April.

As a result, the international live music agency landscape is now largely consolidated by just four companies – CAA, Wasserman, UTA and WME.

“Today marks a new chapter in the history of our company”

“Today marks a new chapter in the history of our company, positioning us better than ever to deliver extraordinary opportunities for many of the world’s preeminent artists, athletes, thought leaders, brands, and organisations in entertainment, sports, and culture,” says a statement by CAA’s co-chairmen Kevin Huvane, Bryan Lourd and Richard Lovett.

“We are thrilled to welcome our new ICM colleagues to CAA, and look forward to combining their expertise, relationships, and resources with those of our agents and executives around the world. Our diverse range of clients who entertain and inspire large global audiences have never been in more demand, nor have their opportunities been greater. With today’s addition of our new colleagues, the scope of possibilities for helping clients achieve their goals is limitless.”

“We couldn’t be more enthusiastic about our future together”

ICM brings to CAA a global roster of artists in film, television, music, comedy, theatre, games, politics and podcasting. Its music clients include Chaka Khan, Corinne Bailey Rae, D’Angelo, Dan Auerbach, Good Charlotte, J. Cole, Jerry Seinfeld, Jill Scott, Kamasi Washington, Khalid, Migos, Roger Daltrey, Rosanne Cash, Scott Stapp, Sheila E, The Black Keys and Trey Songz.

“Combining with the best-in-class agency to build an even greater representation company for our clients and our colleagues is the core strategic reason for this move,” adds ICM’s Chris Silbermann and Ted Chervin. “We couldn’t be more enthusiastic about our future together, and are energised by the sophisticated, forward-thinking representation we offer clients. This is the ideal next step for our companies.”

 


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CAA promotes six trainees to agent

Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has promoted six graduates from its CAA Elevate training programme.

Chris Burrus, Zakaria Laaboudi, Inder Gill, Sophie Kavanagh, Arlen Papazian and Kara Petit have all been elevated by the company.

CAA Elevate is the agency’s next-generation training and practical development curriculum for its new wave of agents and executives in training, designed to “cultivate best practices, encourage innovation and foster global strategic-thinking”.

Nashville-based Burrus, who represents the likes of Nate Smith, Tyler Booth, Erin Kinsey and After Midtown, has been upped to agent in the music touring department. He is also on the teams that support Jake Owen, Matt Koziol and Brandon Ratcliff. He joined CAA in 2018 as an assistant to Sabrina Butera, and was promoted to music touring coordinator in 2021.

CAA Elevate is the agency’s next-generation training and practical development curriculum

London-based Laaboudi joined CAA Sports in 2018, serving as an assistant to Roman Di Somma, prior to being promoted into CAA Elevate in October 2021. In his new role as an international sports talent agent, Laaboudi will identify and orchestrate endorsement opportunities for the agency’s international talent clients, including Cristiano Ronaldo, Son Heung-min, Raphaël Varane and Daniel Ricciardo.

Elsewhere, Los Angeles-based Gill has been promoted to agent and will serve on the media finance team; Kavanagh has been made an agent in the commercial endorsements department and will be based in CAA’s New York office; and LA-based Papazian is promoted to agent in the podcast group, with a focus on creating live touring opportunities. Also based in LA, Petit is promoted to agent in the global television department.

 


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Springsteen tour ticket sales top one million

Bruce Springsteen and The E Street Band have already sold more than one million tickets for their recently announced 2023 European tour dates, it has been revealed.

The European leg kicks off at the 60,000-cap Estadi Olímpic in Barcelona on 28 April and winds up on 25 July in Italy at Prato della Gerascia, Autodromo di Monza.

Spanish promoter Neo Sala at Doctor Music reveals that demand for the shows helped set a new sales record in the country. “We went on sale on Wednesday (8 June) with one Estadi Olímpic, but it sold so fast that in less than an hour we had to add a second show which continued selling equally well,” says Sala, explaining that Doctor Music exclusively used the entradas.com-Eventim ticketing system for the onsale. “By 12 noon on Wednesday we had sold more than 100,000 tickets which is an absolute record in Spain. No other act in the history of Spanish concerts has sold so many tickets that fast.”

The concerts mark the band’s first run since 2016/17’s The River Tour

Due to demand, extra shows have now also been added in Dublin, Oslo, Gothenburg, Paris, Amsterdam and Hockenheim. The tour currently comprises 26 dates, with additional cities and shows in the UK and Belgium set to be announced at a later date.

The tour kicks off in February 2023 with a series of still-to-be-announced US arena dates, with a second North American tour leg scheduled for August.

The concerts mark the band’s first run since 2016/17’s The River Tour, which was the highest grossing worldwide tour of 2016, earning $268.3m over 76 shows.

Springsteen, who is represented by CAA, reprised his 2017/18 Springsteen On Broadway residency last summer to help reopen New York City theatres. Broadway World reports the acclaimed residency generated $113,058,952 from 236 shows at the Walter Kerr Theatre) and 31 at St James Theatre.

 


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Tributes flood in for ex-CAA agent Paul Fitzgerald

Leading live music figures have paid tribute to music agent Paul Fitzgerald, who has died aged 54 following a long illness.

The ex-CAA agent enjoyed a distinguished 25-plus-year career in showbusiness after starting out at Louis Parker’s Concorde International Artistes in the early ’90s.

Fitzgerald, who is survived by wife Ellie and daughter Lulu, was the longtime agent for The X Factor Live tour and worked with artists such as Leona Lewis, Steps, JLS, One Direction, Olly Murs, Nicole Scherzinger, Diversity, Ella Henderson, Beverley Knight and Craig David.

“Fitz was one of a kind. Entrepreneurial from his core and with a great love of his clients”

“Fitz was one of a kind,” CAA co-head Emma Banks tells IQ. “Entrepreneurial from his core and with a great love of his clients, he was a trailblazer in his work with X Factor amongst other projects. He was always open to pursue new projects and avenues with his trademark enthusiasm.

“Paul had a ‘can do’ attitude that went from work into his life generally. He was much loved at CAA, agents across the company in every department globally knew Paul through their interactions at our company retreats or other times that Paul would visit them.

“Paul has left us all far too early and our hearts break for Ellie and Lulu. Gone but never forgotten.”

“Paul was a true legend in every sense of the world”

Fitzgerald, who launched entertainment industry consultancy MYBX in 2018, is credited as a mentor by his former CAA assistant Chris Ibbs, who was elevated to music agent at the company last year.

“Paul was a true legend in every sense of the word,” says Ibbs. “A fabulous agent and great friend. His infectious humour was only matched by his huge kindness. It was an honour to work for him and without his guidance I simply wouldn’t be where I am today. Thank you, sir. Rest easy.”

SJM Concerts promoters Simon Moran and Matt Woolliscroft spoke similarly highly of Fitzgerald, both personally and professionally.

“I always got on really well with Paul,” Moran tells IQ. “We did a lot of business with him over the years. He was very hard working and tenacious. As they used to say on The X Factor, he had the likeability factor – he was a really great fella.”

“He once joked to me, ‘I have never been cool in my entire life’ – he was probably right, but he was a good man with a good heart”

“I worked with Paul across many of his biggest artists including the early touring of One Direction, JLS’s incredible run after their appearance on the X Factor, the X Factor tour itself, Beverley Knight and many others,” adds Woolliscroft. “He was a sensible and easy going person to do business with. Loyal to his contacts and hard working for his clients.

“We’d stayed in periodic contact after his illness had meant he’d had to step back from his work and I was in awe of his positivity. I have missed our more regular contact since he ‘retired’. He once joked to me, ‘I have never been cool in my entire life’ – he was probably right, but he was a good man with a good heart and I will miss him.”

Elsewhere, Triple A Entertainment’s Pete Wilson recalls first meeting Fitzgerald during his early days at Concorde.

“Paul came to a Smash Hits Poll Winners awards show at London Arena to meet with Boyzone,” he remembers. “He was not a booker but a true agent – all of his acts enjoyed the Fitzgerald stamp. He would create a live environment from which the acts could grow and thrive. No act was too small, he gave his time to them all.

“He also had the rare qualities of honesty, loyalty and integrity. To have one of those is a challenge, to have all three is remarkable. He was a true friend and is a massive loss.”

“The achievement he was most proud of was to take a very unfancied Steps to sell one million tickets in UK arenas in one calendar year”

Fellow Triple A director Dennis Arnold adds: “Many people will testify to Paul’s hard work and dedication and his outstanding success as an agent. I would like to pay tribute to him as a loyal, sincere and much loved friend.”

Wilson singles out Fitzgerald’s work on X Factor Live as a particular highlight – but even that played second fiddle in his career accomplishments overall.

“It ran for a number of years and numerous artists that evolved from the show are still worldwide superstars,” he says. “However, the achievement he was most proud of was to take a very unfancied Steps to sell one million tickets in UK arenas in one calendar year.”

In a statement to IQ, Steps – Claire Richards, Faye Tozer, Ian “H” Watkins, Lee Latchford-Evans and Lisa Scott-Lee – share their sadness at the news.

“We were so very saddened to hear of Paul’s passing,” say the British pop group. “He was instrumental in the success of Steps and our touring career. We have many fond memories of spending time with him and send our love to Ellie, Lulu his family, friends and colleagues.”

 


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June New Music Playlist out now

The latest edition of the IQ New Music playlist, featuring a selection of tracks curated by international booking agencies, is now live.

The playlist complements IQ Magazine’s popular New Signings page, which keeps the live industry updated about which new, emerging and re-emerging artists are being signed by agents. Click here to read the latest issue of IQ now.

The June edition of the playlist features tracks hand-picked by agents at CAA, Paradigm, X-Ray, WME, Mother Artists and Primary.

Listen to the latest selection using the Spotify playlist below, or click here to catch up on last month’s playlist first.

Separated by agency, the full track list for the June playlist is:

 

AgencyArtistSong
CAATion Wayne, La RouxIFTK
CAAAugust CharlesLately
ParadigmNoahfinnceChasing Daylight
ParadigmSudan ArchivesSelfish Soul
ParadigmJim LegxacyHit It Light It Twist It
ParadigmNate BrazierInertia
ParadigmDexterPressure
X-RayWax WorksPuffer Coat
X-RayPhoebe BridgersSidelines

X-RayThe Afghan WhigsThe Getaway
X-RayHypotheticsNewborn
X-RayMintFall back
X-RayRhodesThe Love I Give
WMECalvin Harris, Dua Lipa, Young ThugPotion
WMEUMIWish That I Could
WMEMoneybagg YoSee Wat I’m Sayin
WMEJordan DavisWhat My World Spins Around
WMEM.I.A.The One
Mother ArtistsJulieFlutter
Mother ArtistsNoSoParasites
Mother ArtistsYoungrAround The Wrld
Mother ArtistsJoy OladokunPurple Haze
Mother ArtistsRJ ThompsonYour Money or Your Life
PrimaryItsWillNo Love Song
PrimaryBlu DeTigerEnough 4 U
PrimaryBenny Mails, SpecsTime
PrimaryTalk ShowCold House
PrimaryChappaqua WrestlingFull Round Table

 


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Panic! At The Disco announce 40-date world tour

Panic! At The Disco have announced details of their Viva Las Vengeance 2022/23 global arena tour.

Kicking off on 8 September at the Moody Center in Austin, Texas, the run will see the US band return to venues such as Madison Square Garden, Kia Forum in Los Angeles and London’s The O2. Special guests include Marina, Jake Wesley Rogers and Beach Bunny.

The Live Nation-promoted tour is being staged in support of the Brandon Urie-fronted project’s seventh album Viva Las Vengeance, which is released on 19 August, with $1 from each ticket sold in North America, and €1/£1 in Europe and the UK going to the band’s Highest Hopes Foundation. The fund supports organisations that advocate support for human rights for all people and communities subject to discrimination or abuse on the basis of gender, race, religion, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Booked by CAA, Panic! At The Disco’s previous Pray For The Wicked tour featured in Pollstar‘s Top 100 tours of 2019, clocking in at No.66 with a gross of $28.5 million from 40 shows.

The full 2022/23 tour dates are as follows.

8 September, 2022 – Austin, TX @ Moody Center

10 September – Houston, TX @ Toyota Center

11 September – Fort Worth, TX @ Dickies Arena

13 September – Kansas City, MO @ T-Mobile Center

14 September – St. Paul, MN @ Xcel Energy Center

16 September – Milwaukee, WI @ Fiserv Forum

17 September – Chicago, IL @ United Center

20 September – Detroit, MI @ Little Caesars Arena

21 September – Columbus, OH @ Nationwide Arena

23 September – New York, NY @ Madison Square Garden

25 September – Toronto, ON @ Scotiabank Arena

27 September – Montreal, QC @ Bell Centre

28 September – Boston, MA @ TD Garden

30 September – Philadelphia, PA @ Wells Fargo Center

1 October – Washington, DC @ Capital One Arena

2 October – Raleigh, NC @ PNC Arena

4 October – Sunrise, FL @ FLA Live Arena

5 October – Tampa, FL @ Amalie Arena

7 October – Duluth, GA @ Gas South Arena

8 October – Nashville, TN @ Bridgestone Arena

9 October – Saint Louis, MO @ Enterprise Center

11 October – Denver, CO @ Ball Arena

13 October – Salt Lake City, UT @ Vivint Smart Home Arena

15 October – Portland, OR @ Moda Center

16 October – Seattle, WA @ Climate Pledge Arena

19 October – Inglewood, CA @ Kia Forum

21 October – Las Vegas, NV @ T-Mobile Arena

23 October – Phoenix, AZ @ Footprint Center

25 October – San Francisco, CA @ Chase Center

20 February 2023 – Vienna, AT @ Wiener Stadthalle

21 February – Munich, DE @ Olympiahalle

23 February – Hamburg, DE @ Barclays Arena

24 February – Cologne, DE @ Lanxess Arena

25 February – Rotterdam, NL @ Rotterdam Ahoy

28 February – Antwerp, BE @ Sportpaleis

1 March – Paris, FR @ AccorHotels Arena

3 March – Glasgow, UK @ OVO Hydro

4 March – Birmingham, UK @ Utility Arena

6 March – London, UK @ The O2

10 March – Manchester, UK @ AO Arena

 


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IFF 2022 launches with new central hub, agency partners

The eighth edition of the International Festival Forum (IFF), ILMC’s invitation-only event for festivals and bookers, is now live.

More than 800 delegates are expected to attend this year’s gathering of the international music festival business, with many of the world’s leading booking agencies signed up as partners.

Wasserman Music, WME, CAA, UTA, ICM Partners/Primary Talent, ATC Live, X-Ray Touring, One Finiix Live and Earth Agency are among the first to back the 2022 edition and many of whom will present showcases featuring the hottest new talent.

Alongside the showcases, IFF 2022 will offer the usual plethora of networking, showcases, panels, and parties – all taking place between 27 and 29 September in London.

In addition, IFF has announced a new central hub, the Holiday Inn in Camden, which will be transformed into IFF Central for three days.

IFF has announced a new central hub, the Holiday Inn in Camden, which will be transformed into IFF Central

IFF Central will be exclusive to delegates and will host all conference sessions, complimentary delegate lunches, a late-night bar that’s open until the early hours, and ample space for private meetings.

The hotel also features 100 rooms for delegates in a range of categories, which can be booked at the same time as registering your pass. Room rates are discounted for IFF delegates but there’s a limited number available. Click here for more details.

Since launching in 2015, IFF has gained a reputation for showcasing the most talented emerging artists at early stages of their careers, including Idles, Slaves, Loyle Carner, Public Service Broadcasting, Lewis Capaldi and Shame.

Last year, IFF enjoyed a successful return to a physical event, with a programme that featured a double keynote interview with Melvin Benn and Folkert Koopmans.

More details of IFF 2022, including the provisional schedule, will be announced in due course. If you have an idea for a panel topic, speaker or presentation, please email Ruud Berends.

A limited number of super discounted earlybird passes are now available for just £345 (saving £150 on the full rate). Each pass includes access to all sessions and showcases, lunches, dinners, and some drinks. Click here to register.

 


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CAA promotes agents in Nashville, London offices

Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has added two agents to its global music touring staff with the promotions of Jacob Lapidus and Daniel Rais.

Rais, based in London, joined CAA as an assistant in 2017. He works on brand partnerships and event bookings for leading artists including David Guetta, Tems and Charli XCX, among others.

Lapidus, based in Nashville, began his career at CAA in 2016 as an assistant. He works with Moon Taxi, Illiterate Light, The 502s, 49 Winchester, STS9, Charley Crockett, and Wilder Woods, among others.

Within its touring division, CAA books more than 30,000 music and comedy shows each year

Within its touring division, CAA books more than 30,000 music and comedy shows each year, as well as more than 1,000 corporate and private engagements annually.

CAA’s music brand partnerships department develops strategic campaigns and partnerships with worldwide brands for leading music artists.

The agency also maintains an in-house music marketing department that works with promoters, labels, managers and venues to create opportunities for clients across sponsorship, ticketing, digital initiatives, and more.

 


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Arcade Fire announce world tour for 2022

Canadian indie rock band Arcade Fire have announced details of a new world tour, set to take place later this year in support of their new album ‘WE’.

The UK and Europe leg will kick off in Dublin on 30 August, stopping at arenas including the O2 (cap. 21,000) in London, Mercedes Benz Arena (17,000) in Berlin and Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam (17,000) before concluding on 1 October.

The North American leg of the tour will begin in Washington D.C. on 28 October, visiting arenas such as Barclays Center in Brooklyn (19,000), the Kia Forum in Los Angeles (17,505) and Scotia Bank Arena in Toronto (19,800) on 1 December – the band’s final stop.

Arcade Fire will be joined by  Feist for the UK and European dates, while Beck will join them to play acoustic sets in North America.

The band has partnered with the social and environmental justice non-profit PLUS1 on the tour to ensure that £1/$1/€1 from every ticket will go to KANPE, a foundation committed to supporting the most vulnerable communities in Haiti.

Tickets for all tour dates will go on general sale this Friday (13 May).

Arcade Fire are represented by CAA in the UK, Europe and South America.

The 'We' Tour, Arcade Fire

 


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