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Midnight Agency launches in Canada

Canada’s newest independent booking outfit, Midnight Agency, has launched with offices in Vancouver and Toronto.

Founded by veteran agent Grant Paley (president), formerly of Paquin Artists Agency, and artist-agent Nick Middleton (CEO), best known as one half of electronic music duo the Funk Hunters, Midnight Agency represents a diverse roster of more than 30 artists, including Jurassic 5’s Chali 2na Too Many Zooz DJ Shub and James Brown’s band, the JBs, as well as some of the biggest Twitch streamers in Canada.

The latest Covid-19-era agency launch in North America (following the likes of Field Booking, Arrival Artists and TBA Agency), and the first in Canada, Midnight will champion both the live and digital aspects of the agent’s role, say the co-founders, boasting a line-up of gaming streamers that includes the likes of Twitch partners JessU, Pyka and Guns, who reach tens of thousands of viewers weekly.

“We are proud to be the first new independent agency to launch in Canada since Covid-19”

“We are once again witnessing a major shift in the agency landscape: a return to boutique, independent, artist-focused companies charged with creating new opportunities in both the digital and live markets,” says Middleton, who also leads electronic label Westwood Recordings.

“We are proud to be the first new independent agency to launch in Canada since Covid-19 suspended live music. Midnight is about taking back control for our artists, building new revenue streams and navigating the ever-changing demands of how to deliver art and shared music experiences in a post-Covid era.”

Paley, who also started out as an artist, fronting the band Moses Mayes, adds: “After many years working to just find the gigs, I felt compelled to create an agency where working with an artist to fulfil their vision was a top priority. I really missed being a creative person.

Our roster at Midnight Agency represents some of the most forward thinking, diverse and technologically savvy individuals I’ve ever met. I look forward to pushing the boundaries with them and changing the way live music experiences integrate with today’s fast moving online platforms and strategies.”

 


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More UTA Toronto staff find homes at APA, Paquin

Two further booking agencies have made hires from United Talent Agency (UTA) in North America, as the agency’s Canadian staff continue to seek new opportunities ahead of the impending closure of its Toronto office.

Agents Adam Kreeft and Rob Thornton, who had been with the UTA – then The Agency Group – since 2012 and 2007, respectively, join Canadian agency Paquin Entertainment Group, which has offices in Winnipeg, Toronto and Vancouver. Both Kreeft and Thornton will work out of Paquin’s Toronto office, along with fellow UTA alumnus Sarah Litt, who will be taking on an assistant role.

“With Adam and Rob, we are welcoming two agents who bring a wealth of industry knowledge and experience to a team poised for tremendous growth,” says Paquin president Julien Paquin. “I’m confident that they will both effortlessly integrate into our team and further foster Paquin’s commitment to our artists – and their development – in collaboration with our strong relationships within the industry, as well as our dedication to building a strong music community in Canada.”

Kreeft says he’s “excited to join Paquin, an agency that embraces and embodies what I love about being an agent”. “I’m really psyched to continue working alongside my longtime colleagues Rob Thornton and Sarah Litt, who will be making the move with me as well,” he adds.

“We’re very excited to be investing in Canadian artists and the city of Toronto”

Fellow Agency Group veterans Ralph James and Jack Ross, meanwhile, have been recruited by the Agency for the Performing Arts (APA) to oversee its new Toronto office, where they will be joined by former UTA colleagues Stefanie Purificati and Mike Graham.

James (pictured) brings several high-profile Canadian clients to LA-headquartered APA, including Nickelback, Billy Talent, Big Sugar and The Trews.

“It’s an honour to be in business with such accomplished and respected industry vets as Ralph and Jack,” say APA’s Steve Martin and Jim Gosnell in a joint statement. “We’re very excited to be investing in Canadian artists and the city of Toronto as we continue to expand APA’s global footprint.”

The hires by APA and Paquin follow Paradigm Talent Agency’s announcement last week it is to open its first Canadian office, overseen by former UTA agent Rob Zifarelli, in Toronto.

 


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