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Lee Anderson named president of Wasserman Music

Agency giant Wasserman has announced the promotion of Lee Anderson to president of its music division.

Anderson is a founding member of Wasserman Music’s executive leadership team and has helped to craft the music department’s business strategy and growth plan, which has seen its staff triple in size while expanding its global footprint and artist service offerings.

“As our music business has continued to grow and expand, Lee has taken on an increasing number of leadership responsibilities and has been instrumental in shaping the foundation of Wasserman Music and charting a path for even broader global success,” says Casey Wasserman, chair and CEO of Wasserman.

Los Angeles-based Anderson previously held senior leadership roles at AM Only, which was acquired by Paradigm in 2017. Paradigm’s North American live music representation business was acquired by Wasserman in 2021 to create Wasserman Music.

“From day one, we’ve built Wasserman Music on two core principles: to be the best place to work and the best place for artists to be represented”

“From day one, we’ve built Wasserman Music on two core principles: to be the best place to work and the best place for artists to be represented,” said Lee Anderson, president of Wasserman Music. “I’m honoured to accept this new role, but my mission remains the same: to work closely with my colleagues on our executive leadership team to ensure that we remain true to our vision and consistently deliver the best results for our clients and our global team.”

The company’s reporting structure will remain the same, with Anderson taking on additional leadership responsibilities.

In addition to serving as president, Anderson represents music artists including Cautious Clay, Charlotte de Witte, David Guetta, Disclosure, ISOxo, Kenny Beats, Knock2, Oliver Tree, Skrillex, Swedish House Mafia and Zedd.

 


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Julian Jacobs to lead UTA’s New York office

Julian Jacobs, a longtime UTA executive who has helped the firm expand into entertainment marketing, will lead the agency’s New York office, effective March.

Jacobs takes over from Allan Haldeman, a partner and co-head of TV Lit, who has led New York operations with 300 staffers since September of 2022.

Haldeman is expected to continue his work with TV Lit while co-heading Theatre and will travel between New York and Los Angeles.

Jacobs, also a UTA partner, will continue his entertainment marketing efforts, which include brand consulting for several New York-based clients.

“Jacobs will build on the momentum of expanding opportunities for our clients, our people, and our business”

His team includes more than 40 executives who work in Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta and London. Clients include Amazon, Ancestry.com, The Coca-Cola Company, Delta Air Lines, General Motors, Google, Hulu, Hyatt, LinkedIn and Lyft.

UTA played a key role in helping General Motors devise two standout Super Bowl commercials in 2022 that featured Michael Myers and Sopranos creator David Chase. Last year, the agency helped pair GM and Netflix in a single ad that featured actor Will Ferrell and the streamer’s popular TV series Squid Game.

“We are grateful to Allan Haldeman, who, along with our New York leadership team, have expanded and heightened UTA’s presence in this global centre of entertainment, culture and business,” says David Kramer, UTA’s president, in a statement. “With Allan’s return to the West Coast, I am excited that our partner Julian Jacobs will be taking on the role and building on the momentum of expanding opportunities for our clients, our people, and our business.”

 


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Ed Lunger upped to GM, SVP of Sphere Las Vegas

Sphere Entertainment Co. has promoted Ed Lunger to senior vice president/general manager of Sphere, the groundbreaking new venue that opened in Las Vegas last September.

Lunger previously served as vice president and assistant general manager, back-of-house operations, for the 17,500-seat/20,000-cap venue.

In his new role, Lunger will oversee a wide range of functions as part of the overall management of the venue, including building operations, event production, technical operations, guest services, food and beverage, merchandise operations, and ticket operations.

He will also work cross-functionally across the Sphere organisation to develop, execute, and support strategic plans aligned with Sphere’s overall business objectives, according to a release. Lunger is based in Las Vegas.

“I am pleased that Ed has taken on a new leadership role with Sphere,” says Rich Claffey, executive vice president and chief operations officer, Sphere.

“Ed will ensure that Sphere is well positioned to continue building on our world-class experience”

“Since its opening, Sphere has been delivering a first-of-its-kind experience to guests. With his deep expertise in venue management and operations, including at other venues in the MSG Family of Companies, Ed will ensure that Sphere is well positioned to continue building on our world-class experience.”

Lunger says: “Being part of the Sphere team opening this next-generation venue has been an honour, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to now lead our venue operations team in this new role.

“Sphere is setting a new standard for the in-venue guest experience, and I look forward to working with my colleagues across the organisation as we continue to deliver unforgettable moments for our guests right here in Las Vegas.”

Lunger has been a key member of the Sphere venue leadership team since 2020. Prior to that, he spent seven years on the venue operations team at the Forum arena in Inglewood, California, which was part of the MSG Family of Companies until its sale in May 2020.

Lunger’s prior experience also includes various venue operations and engineering roles at Madison Square Garden in New York, which he first joined in 1989 as an HVAC and mechanical equipment engineer.

 


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Wembley Stadium ups Paul Smyth to GM

London’s Wembley Stadium has promoted Paul Smyth to the role of stadium general manager.

Smyth moves up from his previous position as head of event operations at the 90,000-capacity national stadium. He will be responsible for overseeing the delivery of events at the UK’s largest stadium, in addition to managing day-to-day operations.

Having been part of the Wembley team since the new stadium opened in 2007, Smyth has contributed to numerous enhancements in event delivery, maintaining Wembley’s status as one of the world’s premier multi-purpose venues.

Recent accomplishments include the collaborative effort with his teams to introduce two sensory rooms and British Sign Language (BSL) at every event. These initiatives have played a huge part in reinforcing Wembley’s commitment to leading on inclusivity, according to a release.

Smyth’s promotion coincides with the departure of stadium director Liam Boylan

Smyth’s promotion coincides with the departure of stadium director Liam Boylan, who, after nine years, is embarking on a new venture in the music industry next year.

Chris Bryant, the current director of tournaments and events at the FA, will serve as the interim stadium director while the search for Boylan’s successor is underway.

Wembley Stadium has enjoyed a successful summer season during its 100th year, which attracted more than one million fans for events across music, sport and entertainment, including shows by Blur, Mötley Crüe & Def Leppard, Harry Styles and the Capital Summertime Ball.

In addition, The Weeknd smashed the venue’s ticket sales record for a concert with a traditional stage set-up after selling 87,000 tickets for his 18 August performance.

 


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UTA ups Brandi Brammer to SVP global music ops

UTA has elevated Brandi Brammer to senior vice president of global music operations.

In her new role, Brammer will lead the day-to-day operational work of UTA Music, spanning human resources, legal and business affairs, finance, facilities and technology initiatives.

Previously, Brammer served as UTA’s vice president of people and business partnerships. She will continue to be based in Nashville.

“I’m thrilled to take on this new leadership role during such a pivotal moment in the growth and evolution of UTA Music,” Brammer said. “This is such an incredible opportunity to foster synergy across so many integral parts of UTA music on a global scale with the most talented people in the business.”

“I’m thrilled to take on this new leadership role during such a pivotal moment in the growth and evolution of UTA Music”

Before joining UTA in 2021, Brammer served as vice president of human resources at WME and led HR for the music division. She also previously worked at CAA, helping triple the size of their Nashville office and eventually overseeing HR for the company’s music and sports divisions across the Southeast.

Earlier in her career, Brammer worked at the Academy of Country Music as director of events.

“​​Brandi’s an exceptional leader who has played an integral role in growing our presence in Nashville and beyond. Her deep experience, proven track record and collaborative approach will be an invaluable asset as UTA music continues to expand globally and scale our business on a global stage,” said Scott Clayton, UTA partner and co-head of global music.

Over her 20-year career, Brammer has been recognised for her work to increase the representation of women across the music industry. Dozens of women she has hired and mentored are now agents or executives within the industry.

 


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CAA ups Jenna Park Adler to co-head, hip-hop/R&B

CAA has promoted Jenna Park Adler to co-head of its global hip-hop/R&B touring group, alongside current head Mark Cheatham.

Adler personally reps artists across multiple genres as well as hip-hop and R&B, with a client roster that includes Jennifer Lopez, Doja Cat, Charli XCX, Green Day, Chloe x Halle, Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Deftones, and Mark Ronson, among many others.

She is said to have played a key role in Doja Cat’s rise, architected Green Day’s ‘Hella Mega’ tour, and helped Lopez develop her multi-dimensional businesses.

“Jenna’s an undeniable force in the business and an invaluable member of the CAA team”

“Jenna’s an undeniable force in the business and an invaluable member of the CAA team, brilliantly delivering for artists across genres,” says CAA co-head of North American music Darryl Eaton. “Mark and Jenna bring an incredible level of energy, experience and strategic vision to our industry-leading hip-hop/R&B group. Under their leadership, the future is very bright.”

CAA’s hip-hop/R&B team, including specialists in touring, brand partnerships, and cross-over opportunities, comprises 14 agents who service artists including The Weeknd, Doja Cat, A$AP Rocky, Saweetie, Miguel, Ludacris, Jorja Smith, A Boogie Wit Da Hoodie, Logic, Kehlani, Tems, Nav, Q-Tip, Playboi Carti, Wu-Tang Clan, and many others.

“We’re able to support our artists in more ways than ever, thanks to the agency’s tremendous – and ever-growing – number of resources and relationships,” says Adler and Cheatham in a joint statement. “Hip-hop and R&B continue to have a huge influence on the music industry and broader culture, and we couldn’t be more excited to lead our super-talented team into the next evolution of the genre.”

 


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TikTok ups Paul Hourican to global head of music ops

TikTok has promoted Paul Hourican to global head of music operations.

The London-based executive joined the business in November 2019 as head of music operations for the UK and Europe.

During his time at the ByteDance-owned platform, Hourican has focused on the major music markets across Europe and has taken responsibility for music strategy and its execution in the region.

Hourican will now lead a team to coordinate the company’s music campaigns globally, including its work with artists and labels.

Prior to joining TikTok, Hourican worked as the head of international artist marketing at YouTube, in New York, between 2017 and 2019.

He was a music curation lead at the platform prior to that, between 2015 and 2017.

Hourican will now lead a team to coordinate the company’s music campaigns globally

Before he worked at YouTube, Hourican was the head of talent and music at MTV UK in London.

Announcing his new role in a LinkedIn post on Thursday (29 September), Hourican said: “More to follow, but very excited and grateful to be taking on a new gig at TikTok as global head of music operations.

“It’s truly a privilege to come to work every day with such an incredibly talented and passionate group of teammates, so I’m beyond excited for the journey ahead, to continue supporting our incredible partners and our artist community and to make some new friends along the way.”

Meanwhile, Isabel Quinteros Annous has been upped to global lead of music partnerships at TikTok.

Quinteros Annous’ staff will collaborate with regional music teams across all territories to amplify key campaigns and tentpole events, as well as maximise artist opportunities across all of parent company Bytedance products.

Quinteros Annous, based in Los Angeles, previously held roles at the Chamber Group, PMK-BNC, Rubenstein and 5W.

 


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Ole Hertel upped to MD of AEG Operations

Ole Hertel has been promoted to vice president and managing director of AEG Operations, operator of the Mercedes-Benz Arena (cap. 17,000) in Berlin, Germany.

Per the role, the former general manager will also formally assume overall operational responsibility alongside Uwe Frommhold, VP and COO of AEG, who was previously registered solely as MD of Berlin’s largest arena.

Commenting on Hertel’s appointment, Frommhold says: “Ole Hertel is one of the most proven and competent managers in the German event industry. He helped open the Mercedes Benz Arena and played a decisive role in its continued success. Therefore, I am personally very pleased to be able to hand over responsibility to him now.”

“Ole Hertel is one of the most proven and competent managers in the German event industry”

Hertel adds: “Both the recent past and the immediate future represent probably the greatest challenges that not only the Mercedes-Benz Arena, but the entire industry has had to and will have to face. I would like to express my gratitude for the trust placed in me by AEG, but above all, I value it as recognition of all the employees of the Mercedes Benz Arena.”

Hertel has been working for AEG in Berlin since 2008 and was initially responsible for the events division of the Mercedes-Benz Arena before taking over the position of general manager in 2020.

Before joining AEG, he headed event management at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin from 2004 to 2008.

 


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Live Nation UK elevates Maddie Arnold to promoter

Live Nation UK has elevated Maddie Arnold to promoter in its concerts division.

Arnold, who has spent five years with the company working with the likes of J Cole, Machine Gun Kelly, Halsey and Idles, is now responsible for her own growing roster including Ashnikko, Jazmin Bean, Cassyette, Lauren Sanderson, Matt Maltese, Bleach Lab, Caity Baser, Ellie Dixon and Jazmine Flowers.

“Since Maddie joined us she has proved herself to be someone really special,” says Andy Copping, Live Nation UK executive president. “Maddie picked up the promoting side of our business very quickly and it soon became clear that she would become a bona fide promoter in her own right.

“Maddie has fast tracked her way from being an assistant, then an associate promoter to becoming a full-time promoter with consummate ease. Maddie’s knowledge of the business, her connections and aptitude completely set her apart from her contemporaries. I am proud to have Maddie on my team.”

“Having worked in a few areas of the music industry, it was at Live Nation where I finally found my feet”

Arnold has previously held positions at Festival Republic and WME.

“Having worked in a few areas of the music industry, it was at Live Nation where I finally found my feet,” she says. “I soon realised promoting was something I was passionate about, I wanted to learn quickly and was eager to get stuck in.

“The support I’ve had throughout the last five years has been outstanding, constant mentoring, guidance and encouragement from my peers and managers. Although I’ve been building my roster for a few years now, I’m over the moon to now be doing this full time and to continue breaking new and exciting artists.”

Last week, IQ revealed that IME Music owner Ian Evans has joined Live Nation UK, while the company has further bolstered its ranks in the past few months by acquiring London-based music and arts live events company Parallel Lines Promotions.

Stephen Vondy of Liverpool Sound City and I Love Live Events also recently joined the firm as a promoter.

 


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The O2 promotes Christian D’Acuña to senior role

The O2 (cap. 21,000) in London has promoted Christian D’Acuña from director to senior director of programming (UK).

D’Acuña’s new position, which took effect earlier this year, sees him continue to lead programming at the O2 alongside Emma Bownes.

He will also join Steve Homer’s team at AEG Presents and oversee the programming initiatives of the three AEG Presents venues: the O2 (including indigo), Eventim Apollo, and Wolverhampton Civic Halls.

Emma Bownes, VP of venue programming (Europe) at The O2, says: “Christian’s combination of tenacity and passion for music has been pivotal in the development of our event programming at the O2.

“He is extremely well-liked and respected in the industry, and I am delighted that he will using his considerable experience to support the teams at indigo at The O2, Eventim Apollo, and Wolverhampton Civic Halls.”

“He is extremely well-liked and respected in the industry”

Christian D’Acuña has worked at the O2 since 2012 when he joined as programming assistant.

Commenting on his promotion, D’Acuña says: “I’m really excited to have been given the opportunity to work on a broader range of AEG venues in the UK in addition to the O2, and am looking forward to working alongside the great teams we have at Eventim Apollo and indigo at the O2.

“I can’t wait for the reopening of the legendary Civic Halls and The Wulfrum in Wolverhampton in early 2023, where we are already working with promoters and agents on an exciting calendar of events.”

The O2 is due to celebrate its 15th birthday this year and will host 200 events from artists including Dua Lipa, Little Mix, Billie Eilish, Queen + Adam Lambert and Kings of Leon.

 


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