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Casey Wasserman confirmed for ILMC keynote

Casey Wasserman, one of the most powerful figures in the global live agency business, has been revealed as one of a number of heavyweight keynote speakers set for ILMC 34.

The American executive is the chairman and CEO of leading sports, music and culture agency Wasserman, which specialises in marketing and talent representation on a global basis. He is also chairperson of the LA28 Olympic and Paralympic Games and most recently served as the Los Angeles Super Bowl host committee chairman for Super Bowl LVI in 2022.

In April last year, he unveiled Wasserman Music following the acquisition of Paradigm’s North American music business, adding global household names such as Billie Eilish, Coldplay, Drake, Ed Sheeran, Frank Ocean, Imagine Dragons, Jack Harlow, Janelle Monáe, Kacey Musgraves, Kenny Chesney, Normani, SZA and Zedd to an already huge roster of sports and entertainment brands, properties and talent.

In what promises to be a unique keynote interview, Casey Wasserman will be put ‘In The Hot Seat’ at this year’s ILMC. On Wednesday 27 April, he’ll give his view on the live music industry’s pathway to recovery and predictions on how live entertainment will evolve over the coming years.

“His perspective on the future of our business at this crucial time will be invaluable”

“Casey Wasserman has been a titan in live sports and entertainment for decades and his entry into music last year was attention-grabbing to say the least,” says ILMC head Greg Parmley. “His perspective on the future of our business at this crucial time will be invaluable.”

Wasserman’s addition to the ILMC line-up comes after renowned musician, producer and visual artist Brian Eno was announced in conversation with Norwegian artist Aurora on Friday 28 April. The second keynote runs as part of the Green Events & Innovations conference, which takes place within ILMC this year.

Other speakers confirmed for this year’s edition include Phil Bowdery (Live Nation), Jolanda Jansen (Rotterdam Ahoy), Mark Sutherland (journalist), John Giddings (Solo Agency), Jessica Koravos (Oak View Group), Leon Ramakers (Mojo Concerts), Alex Hill (AEG) and Stephan Thanscheidt (FKP Scorpio).

Returning in-person to London’s Royal Garden Hotel on April 26-29, ILMC also produces the ILMC Production Meeting (IPM), which will be held on Tuesday 26 April. IPM is expanding its programming in 2022 to include a day-long tranche of sessions by the Event Safety & Security Summit (E3S).

Full information about the conference including schedule, events and partners is at 34.ilmc.com


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Marc Geiger confirmed for IFF 2020 keynote

Marc Geiger, WME’s former worldwide head of music, has been announced as this year’s IFF Keynote, in conversation with Goldman Sachs’ Lisa Yang.

News of the conversation comes as a host of leading figures line up to speak, and leading booking agencies Paradigm, Primary Talent International and Solo Agency announce dedicated livestream showcases of rising stars.

In light of the current Covid-19 crisis, IFF 2020, the sixth International Festival Forum, will run online as the Interactive Festival Forum (iFF), a two-day online event, from 2 to 3 September. The conference will see hundreds of festival and agency professionals congregate for panel discussions, workshops, networking and deal-making.

The keynote conversation between Geiger – who left WME earlier this year after building the agency’s music division into a global powerhouse – and Lang is expected to cover major disruptors, innovation and change over the next few years. Other topics in the iFF programme include ticket prices and artist fees, force majeure and refunds, virtual festivals, the lost year of artist development, corporate upheaval, sustainability, risk, insurance and more.

Speakers to have already announced their involvement include Alex Hardee (Paradigm), Martin Elbourne (Glastonbury), Maria May (CAA), Jim King and Arnaud Meersseman (AEG Presents), Roberta Medina (Rock in Rio), Peter Elliott and Matt Bates (Primary Talent), Fruzsina Szep, Fra Soler (Primavera Sound) and Tamas Kadar (Sziget).

“IFF remains an important moment to bring the music festival and agency sectors together”

“Even as a virtual edition, IFF remains an important moment to bring the music festival and agency sectors together,” says Paradigm director and agent James Whitting. “There’s no shortage of great new artists to showcase, and after the lost summer, a huge amount to talk about.

“If anything, this year is more vital than ever.”

Paradigm is one of the agencies to host a livestreamed showcase as part of the iFF schedule, produced in partnership with Livefrom.events. Primary Talent International and Solo Agency are also among those presenting upcoming artists.

The sixth edition of the event is backed by festival associations including Yourope, the Association of Independent Festivals, and De Concert!.

Companies to have already confirmed attendance include 13 Artists, ATC Live, Black Deer Live, BPM Concerti, Charmenko, Cobra Agency, Electric Castle, FKP Scorpio, Fullsteam Agency, Gadget ABC Entertainment, ICM Partners, Lost Horizon Festival, Matchbox Live, MetalDays Festival, Mojo Concerts, Paléo Festival Nyon, Roskilde Festival, TAKK, The Talent Boutique, Vertigo, Wacken Open Air & X-ray Touring.

More details about the IFF Keynote can be found here, while the full conference schedule is here.


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Herman Schueremans to keynote IFF 2019

Herman Schueremans, founder of Rock Werchter and CEO of Live Nation Belgium, has been revealed as the keynote interviewee for the fifth International Festival Forum (IFF), taking place in London from 24 to 26 September 2019.

One of the most influential festival pioneers in Europe, Schueremans has guided and grown the fortunes of Rock Werchter for over four decades. One of the most established and respected festivals in Europe, Werchter hosts 150,000 fans annually, has spawned satellite events including TW Classic, Werchter Boutique and Main Square Festival, and won a record six Arthur Awards.

At IFF, the invitation-only event for festivals and booking agents, Schueremans will be interviewed by ILMC founder and longtime friend Martin Hopewell.

“From starting out as a rock journalist to becoming the country’s dominant live music promoter and head of the Belgian arm of Live Nation, Schueremans remains a passionate music lover and entrepreneur, and so is an immensely fitting subject of this year’s IFF Keynote,” say conference organisers, who add that Schueremans will discuss his career, the growth of Werchter and the festival landscape today.

“With two of the industry’s best-known individuals on stage, and 60 minutes of festival-related tales and insight lined up, expect standing room only at this truly unique session.”

Schueremans follows in the footsteps of previous keynote interviewees Alex Hardee (Coda/Paradigm), Isle of Wight Festival’s John Giddings, Rock am Ring’s Marek and Andre Lieberberg and Glastonbury Festival founder Michael Eavis.

IFF 2019 takes place from Tuesday 24 to Thursday 26 September in Camden, London.

As well as confirming Schueremans, IFF has finalised its conference agenda for 2019, announcing UTA’s Greg Lowe as the chair for the traditional Festival Season panel, which kicks off Wednesday morning.

“Expect standing room only at this truly unique session”

Other conference programming includes the Big Billing Debate, chaired by Melt! Booking’s Julia Gudzent, which sees panellists debate the always-controversial issue of the ordering of festival bills, and Niche Work (If You Can Get It), moderated by IQ’s Jon Chapple, examines the proliferation of new genre-specific events outside the rock/pop bubble.

This year, IFF features additional agency partners, with 13 Artists, Solo Agency and Toutpartout joining longstanding partners CAA, Coda, WME, X-ray Touring, ITB, Primary Talent, opening party host UTA, ATC Live and Pitch and Smith. To make meetings between festivals and agents more efficient, IFF 2019 will debut a series of pop-up agency offices around the event. The temporary spaces will allow festivals to meet with most agencies without needing to travel between their ‘real’ offices.

Also new for 2019 is second outdoor networking area at Dingwalls, IFF’s longtime north London home, that will double the footprint of the event – and also allow a small additional number of festival delegates to attend – and two sets of dedicated meetings for all delegates.

The Knowledge Hub will invite leading innovators and solutions experts into IFF for a series of private 30-minute meetings on topics ranging from the latest festival tech to next generation ticketing and VIP opportunities, while the similar Green Hub welcomes leading practitioners to offer advice and expertise on environmental efforts by festivals, artists or companies.

For its fifth edition, IFF is also increasing the number of showcases: in addition to daytime agency shows at Dingwalls, Toutpartout, Dutch Export and Pop Farm will present shows at various venues around Camden on the evening of Wednesday 25 September.

For more information about IFF, including details on last-minute delegate passes, visit iff.rocks.


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Focus Wales gears up for tenth anniversary

Welsh showcase festival Focus Wales has announced dates and released delegate passes for its upcoming tenth anniversary festival.

Taking place from 7 to 9 May in venues across Wrexham, North Wales, the festival will showcase acts from all over the world, alongside conference sessions, arts events and film screenings.

Focus Wales has released a limited number delegate passes at the super early bird rate of £80. Delegate passes give priority access to all live shows, panels and keynote talks, as well as to mixer events and the festival opening party.

Over 200 delegates attended the festival in 2019, with representatives from Glastonbury Festival, Eurosonic, Cambridge Folk Festival and BBC 6Music, among others.

“Focus Wales is a truly international affair”

Performer applications for Focus Wales 2020 are also now open to artists worldwide. The first 50 acts for 2020 will be selected in September, so artists are encouraged to submit applications early.

Over 240 acts performed at the 240 festival last year, including Neck Deep, Cate Le Bon and Boy Azooga.

“A truly international affair”, each year Focus Wales hosts a selection of dedicated international showcases. 2019 showcases included BreakOut West, Catalan Arts Music, Fira B!, Nova Scotia Music Week and WestSide Music Sweden.

Delegate passes can be purchased here.


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