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Karsten Jahnke Konzertdirektion promotes trio

German concert promoter Karsten Jahnke Konzertdirektion (KJK) has entered a new era following the retirement of long-time head of ticketing & sports Anja Schwencke.

The Hamburg-based company has appointed Jessica Hübner and Stefanie Gräßler as heads of ticketing, with the dual leadership to be responsible for ticketing for all KJK’s tours, as well as local concerts.

In addition, Sönke Schal will take over the main responsibility for the newly created people & culture department. Hübner and Gräßler started out in PR & marketing at the Hamburg-based company, switching to ticketing in 2016, while Schal was previously booker with the firm for acts such as Sticky Fingers, Hinds, Men I Trust, as well as heading up Way Back When Festival.

“The recent promotions… say more about the KJ company DNA than any glowing speech ever could”

“The recent promotions of Jessica Hübner and Stefanie Gräßler as head of ticketing dual leadership and Sönke Schal to the newly created position of head of people & culture say more about the KJ company DNA than any glowing speech ever could,” says KJK CEO Ben Mitha. “All three of them not only completed their training at our company, some of them have remained loyal to us for decades and have already worked in several departments within the company. In my eyes, there is no better fit for their current leadership positions and I look forward to working with the three of them to further develop and advance KJ’s fortunes.”

Schwencke, who celebrated her 20th anniversary with the promoter in 2020, has been associated with the company since her student days, starting out as an external box office clerk.

“Anja undisputedly had the greatest expertise in ticketing within the industry and continuously developed this area for our company over 20 years and adapted it to the current market conditions,” adds Mitha. “Along the way, she was extremely successful in helping to build up the sports events area in our portfolio. We are very reluctant to let her go, but are happy for her that her well-deserved retirement will now provide her with even more time for traveling, golfing and attending the odd handball match with her husband Karsten.”

“I thank Anja Schwencke from the bottom of my heart for her outstanding commitment to our company”

Schwencke retired last month, having joined KJK full-time in 2000, taking over the ticketing division from Margret Kosanke.

“I thank Anja Schwencke from the bottom of my heart for her outstanding commitment to our company,” adds KJK founder Karsten Jahnke. “Although she was ‘only’ employed with us for 22 years, she has been associated with our company for well over 40 years as the daughter of our long-time financial accountant and personnel manager Monika Diers, as well as her commitment to ticket service and as a box office employee.

“In February 2000, she took over our ticketing as successor to my sister Margret Kosanke and has not only continuously modernised it, but also made our ticket service the most popular ticket provider in Germany. Thanks to her outstanding expertise, Anja is highly respected within the industry and has constantly championed the interests of us independent concert promoters against the big ticket providers. As if this were not enough, she has also established the sports events division in our company.

“She has worked tirelessly for her team and has built up two extremely competent successors in Jessica and Steffi. I wish her all the best for her new phase of life and hope that she will be able to work successfully on her golf handicap together with her husband Karsten from now on and that they both will enjoy many beautiful travels”

Subscribers can read IQ‘s recent 60th anniversary feature on Karsten Jahnke Konzertdirektion here.

 


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UTA promotes David Kramer and Jay Sures

Talent agency UTA has announced two major promotions, elevating David Kramer to president and Jay Sures to vice-chair.

The US-based duo have served as co-presidents of the company since 2017.

In an internal email seen by Deadline, UTA co-founder and CEO Jeremy Zimmer says Kramer’s promotion “acknowledges the important role he serves as my close strategic partner, leader of a large part of UTA’s operations, and forward-thinking business builder”.

“Again and again, David has been a trusted ally to clients and a passionate champion of our people and our culture,” says Zimmer. “Having David as our president underscores my confidence in the future direction and stewardship of our business.”

Sures, meanwhile, is hailed by Zimmer as “the ultimate power player”.

“We will rely even more on Jay’s unique blend of instincts, intelligence, deep connections, and external relationships”

“He has played a major role in systematically building our television group, including literary and talent, into an industry leader while representing a wide roster of clients,” he says. “He also oversees, and continues to grow, our news, speakers, and culture and leadership groups. As vice-chairman, we will rely even more on Jay’s unique blend of instincts, intelligence, deep connections, and external relationships to continue to drive our business forward across many dimensions.”

Earlier this summer, Kramer led UTA’s acquisition of UK agency Curtis Brown and played a key role bringing in global finance firm EQT as UTA’s largest outside investor.

Sures, meanwhile, has helped build the agency’s TV group and oversees UTA’s news, speakers and culture and leadership businesses.

will enable both executives to focus on their respective strengths. were confirmed days after UTA announced the hiring of veteran music agent Scott Mantell, who most recently served as a partner and co-head of international touring at ICM.

 


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WME promotes four to agent in music and touring division

WME has promoted four team members to agent in its Contemporary Music and Touring division: Justin Edwards, Mary Hannon, Phoebe Holley and Matt Smith.

“We are thrilled and beyond proud to announce these much-deserved promotions,” says Lucy Dickins, global head and Kirk Sommer, global co-head of WME’s Contemporary Music and Touring.

“Justin, Mary, Phoebe and Matt have all excelled in what they do and have brought tremendous passion, energy, and creativity to their work for our artists and internally to the WME team. It’s so exciting to see their growth, and we are honoured to have them be part of the future of WME.”

Justin Edwards’ career at WME began in 2017, and he has worked alongside six agents in six unique departments of WME. He currently handles The Revivalists and The Main Squeeze, alongside their WME agent teams, and oversees bookings for over 75 festivals for the agency, including Bonnaroo, Summer Camp, Wonderstruck, Wonderbus, Capitol Hill Block Party, SunFest, Rifflandia, Mempho, and Desert Daze. Edwards specialises in booking WME’s alternative/rock/indie clients on festivals across North America and his focus is to grow WME’s contemporary music presence in Nashville.

“Justin, Mary, Phoebe and Matt have brought tremendous passion, energy, and creativity to their work”

Mary Hannon started her career at WME in 2016 in the mailroom after graduating from Ohio State University. She worked in country music in WME’s Nashville office, and in 2020, transferred to the Beverly Hills office to work in hip-hop, initially in the festival department and most recently working for the co-head of hip-hop and R&B, Caroline Yim. Hannon’s focus is on booking WME’s Music roster and will work closely on client teams including Anderson .Paak, DOMi & JD Beck, Earl Sweatshirt, Jhené Aiko, Kehlani, Rico Nasty, Steve Lacy, Syd, Willow, and many others.

Phoebe Holley originally joined WME in 2019 and began working with Lucy Dickins at the beginning of 2021 with clients Knucks, Abra Cadabra, Ruti, Chrissi, Bonnie Kemplay, and Sam Akpro. A graduate of UHI, Holley grew up in Spain and returned to her native UK to pursue a career in music, booking a club night at King Tuts and showcasing the likes of Lewis Capaldi, The Snuts and Vistas. She is currently based in the Beverly Hills office.

Matt Smith joined WME’s London office in 2018. He served as the assistant to Steve Hogan, Ella Street, Andy Nees, Jenna Dooling and Brendan Long, and in 2021 was promoted to agent trainee working with Steve Hogan on tours for clients such as Peggy Gou, Eric Prydz, Groove Armada, ARTBAT, Madeon, Porter Robinson, and many more. With his promotion to agent, Smith will continue to be based in the London office, working in the electronic music department and booking shows across various European territories.

WME’s global head of contemporary music and touring, Lucy Dickins, is profiled in the latest issue of IQ, available to read here.

 


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UTA announces 26-strong partner class

UTA has announced the largest partner class in its 31-year history, elevating 26 team members across more than 15 divisions.

Music agents Mike “G” Guirguis, Jbeau Lewis and Matthew Morgan have both been promoted to partner alongside the company’s co-head of music brand partnerships Toni Wallace and Joe Kessler, global head of the firm’s UTA IQ research, data and analytics department.

The class also includes three recently announced partners with Stefanie Liquori as general counsel, Carmen Bona as chief strategy and corporate development officer and Richard Siklos as chief communications officer.

“These colleagues’ leadership, hard work, mentorship and dedication helps push our business forward every day”

“As UTA has grown, these colleagues’ leadership, hard work, mentorship and dedication helps push our business forward every day,” says UTA co-president David Kramer. “This partner class encompasses a wide range of expertise and backgrounds and reflects our commitment to providing clients with best-in-class representation and resources across all areas of the company.”

The new partners also include agents and executives from UTA’s motion picture literary and talent groups, unscripted television, ventures, production arts, sports, MediaLink, media rights, UTA Speakers and digital talent, as well as corporate functions such as legal and human resources.

 


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UTA announces 50+ promotions

UTA has announced 54 promotions across more than 20 divisions in multiple offices.

The promotions encompass employees at various levels of the talent agency and come across several divisions including the first-ever promotion within the web 3.0 department.

In the music department, London-based Christina Austin and Nashville-based Kyle Levinsohn have been upped to agent and London-based Sean Hill to senior director. Coordinators Lauren Holland, Tom Matthews, Harriet Quare and Zoe Swindells have also been elevated.

“This is a group that has demonstrated thought leadership, outstanding performance and commitment to our company”

“As UTA continues to expand and thrive, we are consistently impressed by our colleagues’ work ethic, collaborative spirit and resilience,” says UTA co-president David Kramer. “This is a group who has demonstrated thought leadership, outstanding performance and commitment to our company, and we are looking forward to seeing what they do in their new roles.”

UTA announced more than 100 promotions in total over the past year. As part of its commitment to employee development, the company also recently implemented a wage increase for participants in UTA’s agent training programme.

 


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CAA promotes agents in Nashville, London offices

Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has added two agents to its global music touring staff with the promotions of Jacob Lapidus and Daniel Rais.

Rais, based in London, joined CAA as an assistant in 2017. He works on brand partnerships and event bookings for leading artists including David Guetta, Tems and Charli XCX, among others.

Lapidus, based in Nashville, began his career at CAA in 2016 as an assistant. He works with Moon Taxi, Illiterate Light, The 502s, 49 Winchester, STS9, Charley Crockett, and Wilder Woods, among others.

Within its touring division, CAA books more than 30,000 music and comedy shows each year

Within its touring division, CAA books more than 30,000 music and comedy shows each year, as well as more than 1,000 corporate and private engagements annually.

CAA’s music brand partnerships department develops strategic campaigns and partnerships with worldwide brands for leading music artists.

The agency also maintains an in-house music marketing department that works with promoters, labels, managers and venues to create opportunities for clients across sponsorship, ticketing, digital initiatives, and more.

 


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X-ray Touring announces slate of promotions

London-based X-ray Touring has announced a slate of promotions, which includes Jo Biddiscombe’s elevation to a director of the company.

Biddiscombe has been with X-ray since its inception in 2005 and was made an agent in 2017. She will join Martin Horne, Ian Huffam, Josh Javor and Scott Thomas on the management board.

X-ray has also promoted Claire MacLeod to the role of agent. MacLeod joined the agency in 2011 and worked under the late Steve Strange across his roster. In addition, Paul Lomas and Hannah Edds have been promoted to bookers.

“As we continue with the full return to live touring, we’re very pleased to refresh both our board and team of agents and bookers”

Scott Thomas says: “As we continue with the full return to live touring, and an intensely busy few years ahead across our roster, we’re very pleased to refresh both our board and team of agents and bookers.

“This acknowledges the already invaluable input from the individuals involved and the ideas and dynamism they’ll bring to their new roles.”

X-ray’s roster of more than 400 acts includes Coldplay, Eminem, Robbie Williams, Gorillaz, Queens of the Stone Age, Linkin Park, Pixies, Stereophonics, Bombay Bicycle Club, Enter Shikari and Fever 333, while AGI represents Billy Joel, Metallica, Rod Stewart, Neil Young, Linkin Park, Motley Crue, Def Leppard, the Strokes and Cage the Elephant, among others.

The company was co-founded by legendary booking agent Steve Strange, who passed away in September 2021.

 


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UTA promotes trio of music agents

Leading agency UTA has announced 50 promotions across 20 divisions in multiple offices, including three in its music department.

The promotions encompass employees at various levels of the company and represent a wide range of backgrounds and experiences across gender and ethnicity. In addition, more than 90% of those promoted to agent and over 80% of those promoted to coordinator started their careers in the Agent Training Program, and over 80% of those promoted to executive started as assistant. 

Nikos Kazoleas, Alaina Latona and James Osgood have been elevated to music agents, with Brennan Duffy, Shaq Millington and Jamie Waldman becoming coordinators.

We are grateful for our colleagues’ dedication and resilience as UTA continues to succeed in an evolving business landscape

“We are grateful for our colleagues’ dedication and resilience as UTA continues to succeed in an evolving business landscape,” says UTA co-president David Kramer. “We look forward to seeing all of the great achievements this group will continue to accomplish in their new roles as the company innovates, expands and flourishes.”

The promotions have arisen during a period of significant growth for the company. Most recently, UTA and its partner company Klutch Sports Group established a full-service base of operations in Atlanta. UTA also plans to establish a second UTA artist space gallery in its new Atlanta offices.

The agency also announced the opening of its new Nashville headquarters earlier this year.

 


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CAA ups nine music employees to agent/executive

Creative Artists Agency (CAA) has announced a raft of promotions within its music touring division.

Los Angeles-based Zack Borson, Alex Douma, Omar Garcia and Brad Pophal, Nashville-based Kaitlyn Bruce, Kara Enos and Ariel Happe, New York-based Brian Greenwood and London-based Jamie Shaughnessy have been elevated to the ranks of agent/executive.

The agency has also recently welcomed prominent music agents Matt Galle, Carly James, Mike Marquis, Mike Mori, Rachel Pestik, and Adam Voith, who have brought high-profile acts to the CAA roster, such as Shawn Mendes, Mumford & Sons, Bon Iver, Vampire Weekend, Janet Jackson, My Chemical Romance, Bleachers and Girl in Red.

“Given what our industry has been through over the past 20 months, we’re incredibly proud of the touring department’s accomplishments, and are blessed to have an amazing team that stayed focused and diligent throughout. We have also been fortunate to have fantastic agents and executives join us over these past months,” says CAA’s head of music Rob Light.

Each of the nine people joining our agent and executive ranks has earned their place among our talented colleagues

“The entire team has worked tirelessly on behalf of our clients – their creativity and teamwork continues to serve the passions, needs, interests, and dreams of the incredibly talented artists we work with. Each of the nine people joining our agent and executive ranks today has earned their place among our talented colleagues and we look forward to their many successes ahead.” 

The promotions come on the heels of CAA’s agreement to acquire ICM Partners and follow notable client signings for the company including Zac Brown Band, The Weeknd, JoJo Siwa, Arcade Fire, Miguel, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Chvrches, Charli XCX, Stormzy and Playboi Carti.

Borson, Douma, Enos, Garcia, Greenwood, Pophal and Shaughnessy have been upped to agents, with Bruce and Happe both now serving as executives in CAA’s in-house music marketing and brand partnerships divisions respectively.

 


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Germany’s Goodlive announces reshuffle

Germany’s Goodlive has announced a new management structure “in preparation for ‘the roaring 20s’ of the post-pandemic live entertainment industry”.

Co-founders and managing partners Stefan Lehmkuhl and Thomas Resch have announced their departure from the company, leaving Fruzsina Szép, Julian Gupta and Justus Mang with greater responsibility.

Gupta, alongside his role as managing director of Ferropolis-based festival splash! (cap. 30,000), will also assume responsibility for the festival booking team at Goodlive.

In addition, he will also take over the management and booking of Freiburg-based festival Heroes, which Goodlive partnered with in early 2020, working alongside the festival’s founder Lukas Apfelbacher.

Szép, who was appointed MD of Superbloom in 2019, will be primarily responsible for the Munich launch of the festival.

“[Fruzsina, Julian and Justus] have one of the best teams in the world at their disposal”

Meanwhile, Mang heads Goodlive Artists, the company’s touring arm (description), which recently expanded to Austria.

In the future, all three will actively support the management of Goodlive, alongside the remaining confounders and managing partners at the company Marko Hegner and Mirko Roßner. The fifth cofounder of Goodlive, Matthias Hörstmann, left in 2017.

Stefan Lehmkuhl says: “I am incredibly proud and delighted that trusted friends like Fruzsina, Julian and Justus will play a more leading role in shaping the future of Goodlive. They have one of the best teams in the world at their disposal, and many of the people I’ve worked with over the years are taking on more responsibility for some of the projects I’ve had the pleasure to help shape over the past 20 years.

“Personally, I long for a period of pause and reflection on whether and in what capacity I see my future in the live entertainment industry after the pandemic, and I am happy to have the privilege of taking a longer break after more than two decades of never standing still.”

“We feel well-positioned to further expand our role as an independent alternative in the festival and touring market”

Thomas Resch adds: “When I stumbled into the live entertainment industry 25 years ago at the young age of 18, I could not have imagined where this journey would lead. It was a very exciting time with many challenges and even more unforgettable moments.

“During the last years, Julian Gupta has firmly shaped splash! and achieved a great deal. I am sure that under his leadership, our strong team will master all other challenges and that Goodlive will continue on its successful path.”

Marko Hegner, MD, Goodlive, says: “We feel well-positioned to further expand our role as an independent alternative in the festival and touring market from 2022 onwards and are incredibly excited to finally tackle projects that had already been planned before Corona, such as Superbloom Festival in Munich, Heroes Festival in Freiburg and the launch of Goodlive Artists in Austria.

“I have a lot of respect for Thomas’ and Stefan’s decisions to put their own needs first after a pandemic that was demanding for all of us, and I am grateful that together we have succeeded in optimally positioning Goodlive for the future in terms of personnel during a longer preparation phase.”

 


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