WME announces 24 partner and agent promotions
WME has announced seven partner promotions and 17 agent promotions in its music division.
The seven agents promoted to partner are Cristina Baxter, Michael Coughlin, Ryan Jones, Richard Lom, Ben Schiffer, Peter Schwartz and Sam Wald.
Baxter and Schiffer are based in Los Angeles, Coughlin and Jones are based in Nashville, Lom and Schwartz are based in New York and Sam Wald is based in Sydney.
The 14 individuals promoted to agent include Tor Breon, Joe Friel, Allie Galyon, Noah Guthman, Andy Mack, Jordan Meisles, Tim Meldman, Michael Montante, Fernando Montes, Rico Pedraza, Jessica Phillips, Jesse Robbins, Brett Schaffer, Grace Stern, Mary-Michael Teel, Austin Tobias and Ian Wilkerson.
“These promotions all reflect the future of the music industry, and we are so proud of the continued creativity each of these individuals has demonstrated, both internally and on behalf of our clients,” say Lucy Dickins and Kirk Sommer, co-heads of WME’s music division. “Their out-of-the-box thinking, passion for artists and commitment to excellence set our group apart.”
Baxter joined the WME music department as an assistant in 2011. Her clients include Kygo, Miley Cyrus, Carly Rae Jepsen, Sofi Tukker, Kali Uchis and Ashnikko, among others.
“These promotions all reflect the future of the music industry”
Coughlin’s roster crosses multiple genres, including Lewis Capaldi, King Princess, Dean Lewis, The Revivalists, Ashnikko, Eric Nam and Inhaler.
Following his tenure in the non-traditional touring and adult contemporary department, Jones has led the private and corporate department since 2017.
With a focus on Latin music, Lom has developed his roster that includes J Balvin, Farruko, Caifanes, Cazzu, Juanes, Daddy Yankee, Bomba Estereo, Natti Natasha, Vicente Garcia, Cornetto and Agudelo888.
Schiffer works alongside his teammates with some of the most critically-acclaimed and award-winning artists today including Sheryl Crow, Olivia Rodrigo, Andy Grammer, Laura Marling, Keb’ Mo’ and Yebba, among others.
Schwartz is a veteran agent, representing AJR, Macklemore, Olivia Rodrigo, 24KGoldn, Lucky Daye, Aminé, Ferg and Joey BadA$$, among others.
Wald’s clients include Gang of Youths, Orville Peck, Sofi Tukker, Porter Robinson, Fatboy Slim, AJR, ZHU, Cordae, Earl Sweatshirt, Polo & Pan, TOKiMONSTA, Madeon, Alok, Channel Tres, JPEGMafia, Black Coffee and UMI, among others.
These promotions follow several recent new hires at WME, including Zach Iser and Caroline Yim who were brought in as co-heads of hip-hop/R&B from CAA, Craig D’Souza (international contemporary), Andy Duggan (international festivals) and Whitney Boateng (hip-hop and R&B), Dru Bass (crossover), Bailey Greenwood (electronic music), Dana Jeter (hip-hop and R&B) and Randall Uritsky (domestic festivals).
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AEG names Brett Williams SVP Global Touring & Talent
AEG Presents has appointed Brett Williams as senior vice president of global touring and talent.
Williams joins AEG Presents after more than 15 years at Los Angeles-based management company Monotone, Inc., where he most recently served as general manager.
His responsibilities at AEG Presents will include identifying, signing, and booking talent for the company’s global touring and talent division, according to a press release.
“Brett brings an incredible breadth of knowledge and experience to the position”
“Brett brings an incredible breadth of knowledge and experience to the position,” commented Gary Gersh, AEG Presents president of global touring and talent, to whom Williams reports. “His management background, keen eye for spotting and developing talent, and superb artist relations skills are perfectly aligned with our core strategy. I’m thrilled he’s joining the team.”
During his tenure at Monotone, Williams worked with artists including LCD Soundsystem, The Chicks, Foster the People, Cold War Kids, Miike Snow, Dirty Projectors, BANKS, Ratatat, Still Woozy, Empress Of and Briston Maroney.
He also helped the company grow its roster from four clients to more than 20 while expanding the staff from six to 20-plus employees.
“I’m thrilled to be joining such a well-respected and innovative company, and look forward to working with Gary and the entire global touring and talent team, who are best in class,” Williams. “I started my career in music because of my obsession with artists, and the company’s mission mirrors my own — namely, to build, support, and serve world-class artists and their vision.”
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CAA to relocate HQ to larger offices
CAA has announced that it will relocate to a new larger space in 2026 to accommodate the company’s “tremendous growth”.
The agency will move across from its current offices on Avenue of the Stars in Century City, Los Angeles, which it has called home since 2007.
Its new home will be JMB Realty’s 37-story, state-of the-art commercial tower on Constellation Boulevard, which is yet to be built.
The upcoming expansion comes a few months after CAA announced its acquisition of ICM Partners, targeted to close in the second quarter of this year.
At that time, CAA chairman Richard Lovett told The Hollywood Reporter that, when combined, the companies “are all going to be in one location together as soon as time allows for that to be.”
“Today’s news underscores the energy and momentum of CAA and the tremendous growth we’re experiencing”
ICM’s headquarters since 2016 is around the corner at 10250 Constellation Boulevard.
“[This] news underscores the energy and momentum of CAA and the tremendous growth we’re experiencing across our businesses,” said CAA co-chairman Richard Lovett in a statement.
“We’re designing a home for the future here in Los Angeles that captures the imagination, inspiration and creativity that’s fundamental to the work we do, and that continues to drive our success for clients. We’re guided by our focus on personal connection, a deeply rooted culture of collaboration, and a desire to create the most welcoming and exciting environment for our employees, clients and the creative community.”
CAA’s future home features two acres of gardens and courtyards and is designed to achieve LEED Platinum certification – the highest rating from the US Green Building Council. CAA will have its own entrance, lobby and parking areas.
In addition, CAA employees will have easy access to the upcoming Constellation/Century City Metro station.
UTA appoints Lindsay Wagner as chief diversity officer
UTA has named Lindsay Wagner as chief diversity officer, tasked with “expanding and driving innovative strategy for the company’s diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives”.
In the newly created position, Wagner will be responsible for a series of internal initiatives such as raising pay for entry-level positions, unconscious bias training for all employees and promoting senior agents of colour to the UTA Board and Partnership.
Based in Los Angeles, Wagner will report jointly to UTA’s CEO Jeremy Zimmer and partner & chief people officer Jean-Rene Zetrenne.
“As UTA grows, we must continue to cultivate a more diverse, multifaceted and inclusive culture,” says Zimmer. “Lindsay has a proven track record of pushing the envelope and leading with a fresh and unique perspective. I am confident that she will bring ingenuity to this new role and will be a great steward for the cause.”
“Lindsay has a proven track record of pushing the envelope and leading with a fresh and unique perspective”
Wagner added: “Entertainment sits at the cross-section of culture, storytelling and influence and therefore it’s critical that we collectively continue to identify and amplify authentic representation inside and outside of the organisation.
“I am honoured to join UTA and contribute to this purpose-led team focused on building a more diverse, equitable and inclusive community and industry now and for generations to come.”
Prior to joining UTA, Wagner served as SVP and head of diversity, equity & inclusion, North America at the global communications consulting firm, Ketchum.
Wagner continues to serve as a jury member for The ADCOLOR Awards, a strategic advisor for Kindred Space LA, an advisor for Sovern, an advisory board member for The Lantern Network and a member of Justice League NYC & CA.
As part of the Justice League NYC team, she shared in the honour of receiving the distinguished Chairman’s Award from the NAACP Image Awards. She also earned the Pat Tobin Award from the Black Public Relations Society of Los Angeles.
Primavera Sound details inaugural LA edition
The first-ever US edition of Primavera Sound will take place next year in Los Angeles, California, with headliners Arctic Monkeys, Nine Inch Nails and Lorde.
The California debut, co-produced with Live Nation, is scheduled from 16 to 18 September 2022 at the Los Angeles Historic Park.
The long-awaited event was first announced in 2019, pre-pandemic, shortly after a minority investment in Primavera Sound by American private equity firm, the Yucaipa Companies, in June 2018.
The Los Angeles event coincides with the 20th-anniversary edition of Primavera Sound’s flagship event in Barcelona.
The bumper edition will take place at the Parc del Fórum complex across two weekends with acts including Lorde, Dua Lipa, Megan Thee Stallion.
“Today, at last, we finally begin to cross the bridge that will take us to a new destination Primavera”
The LA event is the latest addition to the Primavera Sound family, following the creation of sister conference Primavera Pro in 2010 and the Portuguese outing of the festival, Primavera Sound Porto, in 2012.
“Today, at last, we finally begin to cross the bridge that will take us to a new destination Primavera without renouncing to all those values that, after 19 editions, the Barcelona festival champions,” reads a statement from Primavera, regarding the LA edition.
“Sustainability, gender equality, social commitment and urban integration will guarantee an impact that goes beyond the strictly musical one.”
All previously purchased tickets will be valid for Primavera Sound Los Angeles 2022. Pre-sale for remaining tickets begins on Friday 10 December at 10:00 PT. More information can be found on the Primavera website.
See the first batch of confirmed artists for Primavera LA below.
LA to require masks at all outdoor events
The Los Angeles county department of public health has issued a new order stating that attendees of any major outdoor event will be required to wear a mask – regardless of Covid-19 vaccination status – due to a spike in Covid-19 cases.
From 23:59 on Thursday 19 August, the county’s order will apply to all events with more than 10,000 attendees, such as music or food festivals, car shows, large endurance events, marathons, parades, sporting events and concerts.
The order is to be enforced by the operators of any such event, both verbally and with visible signage at all entry points.
Masks are required to be worn by everyone at all times except when actively eating or drinking at these events, according to the order.
The county order comes after orders issued in July, which reinstated an indoor mask mandate for most public spaces
Head in the Clouds festival, which is set to take place at Brookside at the Rose Bowl 6–7 November is one of the few major music festivals scheduled to take place in LA for the remainder of 2021. But the order will also affect larger venues including the Hollywood Bowl, SoFi Stadium and the Banc of California Stadium, as well as sports venues.
The county order comes after orders issued in July, which reinstated an indoor mask mandate for most public spaces, applying to both major events (defined as those with 5,000 or more attendees) as well as smaller spaces such as restaurants, movie theatres and gyms.
The public health department said that the Delta variant of Covid-19, which is twice as contagious as earlier variants of the virus, is now predominant in LA county. On 16 August, the LA County Public Health reported 2,426 new cases of Covid-19, 1,653 current hospitalisations and five new deaths.
YouTube, Live Nation open livestreaming-focused venue
YouTube Theatre, the new 6,000-seat live music and entertainment venue located at Hollywood Park in California, is now open.
The venue’s initial slate of events spans September, October and November and will culminate in a grand opening this winter when YouTube Theatre and Live Nation, the venue’s exclusive booking promoter, will announce the first artist residency.
Throughout autumn, the YouTube Theatre will host concerts with the likes of Pitbull, Iggy Azalea, TLC, Evanescence, Halestorm, Marina (and the Diamonds) and Louis Tomlinson, as well as awards shows, esports competitions, community gatherings and conferences.
The state-of-the-art indoor venue has a focus on digital technology, with capabilities to “seamlessly” stream live events to YouTube’s two billion global monthly users.
The three-story, 227,000-square-foot venue is part of Hollywood Park, a privately funded 300-acre sports and entertainment destination being developed by Kroenke.
“YouTube Theatre will share the event experience with our two billion global monthly users through live streams and VOD”
The YouTube Theatre is housed under the same roof canopy as the 70,000-capacity SoFi Stadium (home to American football teams, Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers) and the American Airlines Plaza.
“We couldn’t be more thrilled to be the exclusive promoters of this incredibly dynamic venue coming alive in Los Angeles,” says Rich Best, Live Nation’s regional head of talent for California. “Alongside Hollywood Park, we plan to make this a must-visit live entertainment venue and we can’t wait to unveil what is in store for this unique space.”
Angela Courtin, VP of brand marketing, YouTube, added: “YouTube Theatre will drive the uniqueness of YouTube by combining physical, ‘in real life’ events that bring creators and fans together, while simultaneously sharing that same event experience with our two billion global monthly users through live streams and VOD content.”
Jason Gannon, managing director, SoFi Stadium and Hollywood Park, says: “When he set out to build YouTube Theatre, Stan Kroenke envisioned an intimate, world-class venue that exemplified three core aspects: technology, creativity, and entertainment. We cannot imagine a better partner to help us bring this vision to life than YouTube.”
Hollywood Bowl to designate ‘majority’ of seats to the vaccinated
The Hollywood Bowl will reopen for live performances in July with a number of safety precautions that favour vaccinated concertgoers over non-vaccinated.
The LA amphitheatre will reopen at 65% of its 17,500 capacity and the ‘majority of all concert seats will be designated to fully vaccinated patrons’, according to the venue’s website.
Fully vaccinated attendees will be required to show proof of vaccination and photo ID upon entry. Inside the venue, these attendees will be permitted to sit in the ‘vaccinated seating sections’ which will not be socially distanced.
US citizens are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose of (Pfizer or Moderna) or two weeks after their first dose of (Johnson & Johnson).
Since the Covid-19 vaccine distribution began in the US on 14 December, more than 124 million people or 37.5% of the total population have been fully vaccinated, according to NPR’s Covid-19 vaccine tracker.
The Hollywood Bowl has stipulated that concertgoers who are not fully vaccinated will be required to show a negative Covid-19 test result (which cannot be more than 72 hours old) and a photo ID upon entry.
Attendees who are not fully vaccinated will be required to sit in a socially distanced seating area away from the other sections
These patrons will be required to sit in one of two seating sections, which are socially distanced and separate from vaccination-required sections.
US officials have dismissed the idea of a “vaccine passport” to prove a person’s jab history – saying it represents a violation of privacy – but some venues, concerts and other large gatherings have asked attendees for proof.
Vaccine passports have already taken off in Israel, where anyone who wants to attend a concert must be doubly vaccinated.
Concerts, gyms, swimming pools, theatres and hotels are only available to residents who hold a Green Pass – a certificate issued by the ministry of health showing they had received both doses of the vaccine more than a week prior to the event or that they had recovered from Covid-19 and were presumed immune.
The ethical implications of implementing vaccine passports have been hotly debated around the world. Last week, in IQ‘s first-ever Recovery Sessions, a number of experts hailing from Tel Aviv to London debated the topics of test certificates and vaccine passports.
IQ subscribers can watch the Recovery Sessions on-demand here.
ICM Partners promotes four concert bookers to agent
ICM Partners has promoted four coordinators from its concert departments in both Los Angeles and New York to agent.
Sam Bartlett, Branden Berger, Ferguson Hiett and Sara Shapiro have been promoted to agent, as well as ten others from across ICM’s branded entertainment, digital, literature, production, publications, talent and theatre divisions.
“Today we celebrate the right of passage from coordinator to agent for 14 hardworking ambitious, and intellectually curious women and men, who have earned their promotions,” said Kevin Crotty and Sloan Harris, co-presidents of ICM Partners. “We have so many homegrown success stories at ICM Partners, and we are confident that among this new group of agents, many will follow in those successful footsteps.”
Ferguson Hiett was promoted to agent in February 2020. He books the west coast and the south for the department’s roster of musicians and has been instrumental in building ICM’s College Music Booking Department. Hiett joined ICM Partners in 2013 as an assistant to head of worldwide music, Rob Prinz, and was promoted to coordinator in 2018, helping launch tours for Jerry Seinfeld, Celine Dion, Bob Seger, Alice In Chains, Kamasi Washington and many others.
“We have so many homegrown success stories and we are confident that this group of agents will follow in those footsteps”
Sara Shapiro was also promoted to agent in February 2020. She books the midwest for the adult contemporary and comedy touring departments and her clients include the podcasts We Met At Acme, It’s Happening with Snooki & Joey, LadyGang, and Here to Make Friends. She was named coordinator in 2018 after joining the concerts department in 2014.
Sam Bartlett was promoted to agent in February 2020 and handles live concert bookings for ICM’s adult contemporary and comedy rosters in clubs, theatres, and amphitheatres. He was promoted to coordinator in 2018 after being selected for ICM’s agent trainee program in 2016. Bartlett joined the New York office in 2014.
Branden Berger was promoted to agent in October 2020. As an agent in the comedy touring department, Berger books some of the agency’s top touring comedians in clubs, colleges, and theatres nationwide. In addition, he recently has been booking clients for virtual shows and drive-ins. Berger had been coordinator in the concerts department since 2018.
Former Paradigm agents join UTA
UTA has announced Jeffrey Hasson and Matt Meyer, both formerly of Paradigm Talent Agency, as its latest hires.
Hasson will be part of the leadership team in the Nashville office, while Meyer will be based in UTA’s Los Angeles headquarters.
Hasson has worked with artists including Young the Giant, Tori Kelly, Surfaces, Jamey Johnson, Dashboard Confessional, Dayglow, Blues Traveler, Coin and Ruston Kelly, among others. He joins UTA from Paradigm, after starting his career at Monterey Peninsular Artists (later acquired by Paradigm) in 2005.
“I’m so excited to join the UTA team, and a music department with such great momentum,” he comments. “The company’s perseverance and navigation through these trying times has been very admirable. I can’t wait to share all of UTA’s incredible cross-department resources with my clients to help elevate their business.”
Meyer has represented artists including Halsey, Machine Gun Kelly, Lil Dicky, Don Toliver, Tinashe, Yungblud, Cash Cash, Eden and the Knocks. With Halsey, he played an instrumental role in fostering the singer’s development from an opening act to a festival and arena headliner.
“Jeffrey and Matt have impeccable track records of identifying and developing emerging artists”
He started his career an agent at electronic dance music agency AM Only, also later acquired by Paradigm.
“I am grateful to be joining the team at UTA during a time when they have showcased real innovation and done amazing work on behalf of their clients.
“Everyone has been extremely supportive of this next chapter in my career and I am looking forward to collaborating with my new colleagues to both expand my clients’ passions outside of music and creating a great touring business.”
“Jeffrey and Matt have impeccable track records of identifying and developing emerging artists and creating unique opportunities for their clients,” comments David Zedeck, co-head of UTA’s Music department. “Jeffrey is well-respected within the Nashville music community, and Matt has his finger firmly on the pulse for the next generation of hitmakers. We are thrilled to welcome both of them to our team.”