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Richard Krezwick announces departure from ASM Global

ASM Global’s chief commercial officer Richard Krezwick has announced his departure from the company.

Krezwick, who has spent more than four decades in live events, announced on LinkedIn that he is to pursue new opportunities from September after concluding his notice period.

His previous roles include senior vice president facilities at AEG Europe from 2014 to 2018, in which he was responsible for all of the group’s venues in Europe including the O2 in London, Mercedes-Benz Arena in Berlin, AccorHotels Arena in Paris, the SSE Hydro in Glasgow and Friends Arena in Stockholm.

He relocated in 2018 to the US to head up AEG Facilities’ new office in Manhattan, New York.

He also spent four years as president of Devils Arena Entertainment, New Jersey, from 2009 to 2013, as well as two years as regional vice-president of AEG Facilities from 2007 to 2009.

“I’m looking forward to doing all I can for ASM in the coming weeks, then start brewing some entrepreneurial ideas”

“I realised my entire career has been like driving the Autobahn… full throttle… every day, pedal to the metal,” he wrote. “From the old Spectrum in Philly, around the world and back to ASM in Philly where it all began. It’s time to exit the highway once in a while and take the road less travelled.”

“I’m looking forward to doing all I can for ASM in the coming weeks, then start brewing some entrepreneurial ideas, doing a few deals and staying close to the business that’s been so good to me and my family, for so many years. Stay tuned…” he concluded.

Uwe Frommhold, AEG chief operating officer, wrote: “Thanks for everything Rich! Has been a great pleasure to join you for a couple of ‘fast rides’ on the German Autobahn. Hope to see you again over here soon – there are lots of nice roads still to be taken at a slower pace!”

Marie Lindqvist, senior vice-president Europe at ASM Global, wrote: “You challenged me, believed in my capabilities and taught me so much about our amazing industry. For that, I will always be grateful. I wish you the best of luck in your next phase and look forward to meeting soon. Hopefully in a sold-out arena!”

John Langford, AEG Europe chief operating officer, wrote: “Good luck boss. It’s been a pleasure sitting shotgun on parts of the journey.”


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LA Opera, IFPI investigate ‘Opera King’ sexual misconduct

The Los Angeles Opera and the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) have launched separate investigations into opera superstar Plácido Domingo, who has been accused of sexual harassment by multiple women.

Multi Grammy award-winning singer and conductor Domingo has served as general director of the LA Opera since 2003 and as IFPI chairman since 2011.

On Tuesday (13 August), the Associated Press reported that nine women in the opera industry had come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct against Domingo, spanning over three decades. Seven of the nine claim they felt their careers would have been jeopardised if they rejected Domingo’s advances.

A further six individuals told the AP that “suggestive overtures” by the singer had made them feel uncomfortable. Only one of the subjects, retired opera singer Patricia Wulf, allowed her name to be used in the report.

In response to the reports, the LA Opera is hiring a third party counsel to investigate “the concerning allegations”, as the IFPI launches its own “formal inquiry” into the accusations.

The Philadelphia Orchestra and San Francisco Opera have cancelled upcoming performances by Domingo.

The singer had been invited to appear at the opening gala for the Philadelphia Orchestra on September 18, and was also set to make his 50th anniversary appearance with the San Francisco Opera on October 6.

“I believed that all of my interactions and relationships were always welcomed and consensual”

New York’s Metropolitan Opera is awaiting the results of investigations “before making any final decisions” regarding Domingo, who is to perform in three operatic productions of Macbeth next month.

The opera star will appear at the Salzburg Festival in Austria as planned on 31 August. Festival president Helga Rabl-Stadler said it would be “factually wrong and morally irresponsible to make irreversible judgements at this point.”

Domingo calls the allegations “deeply troubling, and as presented, inaccurate.”

“Still, it is painful to hear that I may have upset anyone or made them feel uncomfortable – no matter how long ago and despite my best intentions. I believed that all of my interactions and relationships were always welcomed and consensual,” continues Domingo in a statement issued to the AP.

“People who know me or who have worked with me know that I am not someone who would intentionally harm, offend, or embarrass anyone. However, I recognise that the rules and standards by which we are – and should be – measured against today are very different than they were in the past.”

The opera singer has upcoming European dates in Hungary, Switzerland, Russia, Austria, Germany, Spain, Italy and Poland.


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Philadelphia mayor: Made in America must relocate

Jay-Z‘s Made in America festival has faced prolonged issues this week, after comments from the Philadelphia mayor’s office said the open air event will from 2019 need to relocate away from the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, it’s home since 2012.

Citing cost issues, congestion in the city brought on by the event and a growth in tourism, a representative for Mayor Jim Kenney’s office told local media, “the need for an event of this scale at this location may no longer be necessary.”

The decision not to let the event go ahead at its long-term home in 2019 appears to have been made without the input of Jay-Z or Roc Nation. Comments to local media from the mayor’s office therefore provoked an angry response from organisers and Jay-Z himself, with the rapper penning a passionate op-ed in the Philadelphia Enquirer

“We are disappointed that the mayor of the city of Philadelphia would evict us from the heart of the city, through a media outlet, without a sit-down meeting, notice, dialogue, or proper communication,” the rapper writes.

“It signifies zero appreciation for what Made In America has built alongside the phenomenal citizens of this city.”

“How do you think that tourism grew, Mayor Kenny?”

The mayor’s office originally cited an increase in tourism as one of the reasons the event, which last year welcomed 130,000 concertgoers across Labor Day weekend, need not go ahead in its current location. To this, the rapper responded by saying his event was largely part of the reason the city had seen this success, asking: “How do you think that tourism grew, Mayor Kenny?”

Officials have suggested the event may happen at a different Philadelphian location, but it seems the site of Benjamin Franklin Parkway is of particular importance to organisers. In his op-ed, Jay-Z writes that the Parkway, “captures the freedom and spirit of inclusivity that drew us to the City of Brotherly Love.”

Variety reported yesterday that Desiree Perez, chief operating officer of Roc Nation, stated that Made in America will take place at Benjamin Franklin Parkway or it will move out of Philadelphia altogether. Perez went on to call the Mayor’s actions a “bullying tactic.”

Made in America promoter Live Nation has since weighed in on the matter, siding wholly with Roc Nation. “We have yet to hear a compelling or plausible explanation for why the festival cannot return to the site where it has successfully been housed for six years and generated $102.8M in positive economic impact to the city,” Live Nation says in a statement.

“By handicapping Made In America’s ability to bring the best show possible to the best site possible, this administration makes a statement about how it values the arts and plans to protect and expand the city’s vibrant musical heritage.”

Performing this year at Made in America (1 and 2 September) at the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, potentially for the last time, are artists including Nicki Minaj, Post Malone and Diplo.


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