The Role of Local Artist Management Companies

When you search for artist management companies on the internet, you come across a wide variety of different kinds of companies. Sometimes the business strategy of the company is very clearly stated on their web page in a couple of sentences, which can be a good sign that this company knows what they are doing. Every company, of course, differs from one another, but a couple of classifications can be made. In this text I’ll give a short overview on what it means to be a ‘Local artist management company’.

Local management companies usually represent an artist in some particular territory which is often determined to be a certain geographical area. This territory can be one country or a bigger area, like Europe for example, or an area based on the same language group. The strengths of local managements are local knowledge of the market, networks and an understanding of habits, the customs and language of that particular region. Local management companies are usually very small companies with only 1-5 people working in them. According to statistics, nearly 85% of IAMA (International Artist Managers Association) member companies belong to this group.

The way for for a local management to survive in the business is to become part of a bigger network of management companies. Artist representation can be built on a network of small companies. However, the common model is that the artist has one bigger company acting as a general manager and then the local managers fill the gaps that the general manager cannot cover. There can be huge amount of different variations within the representative relationships between the artist and management companies. But then again, every artist is different and also the needs for the service required can be very different depending on many variables.

Every company who is a member of either IAMA or the AEAA (European Association of Artist Managers) is committed to follow the ’Code of Practice’ . This Code sets the rules for the business. On top of that every artist, general manager and local manager has to have an agreement in which they determine the rules for the representation together. This seems to be a very simple task to handle, but in practice there can be many difficulties along the way. Many times these difficulties can be caused simply because all the parties involved with the agreement haven’t properly discussed what they have actually agreed upon together.

The income for local management companies is decreasing constantly and many wonder how local managements can survive in today’s very competitive business field. In most cases, artist management is not a very profitable business and if one wants to make money, this is not the right field. In my experience, all of the managers working in the field of classical music have a real passion for the art of music and they genuinely want to do all their best in order to develop the careers of the artists they are representing. This is one of the key things that drives all management companies, small or large, forward.

Olli Brummer has been working as an Artist Manager at Fazer Artists’ Management since 2009. Alongside with his artist management work at Fazer, Olli has been involved in producing tours and events in Europe and Asia. From 2010-12, he worked as the Chief Executive of the ‘Music by the Sea’ festival in Inkoo, Finland. Olli is a graduate of the Sibelius Academy Vocal Department (Master of Music) and completed his studies in musicology and communication at Helsinki University (Master of Arts). Follow Olli on Twitter: @OlliBrummer.

Fazer Artists' Management Inc., founded in 1903, is one of the world's oldest artists' agencies in the field of classical music. The company is the exclusive representative of numerous international artists ranging from celebrated maestros to wonderful young talents. Today, Fazer Artists Management is the leading artists' agency in Finland. The company also organises concerts and tours in Finland and abroad. Follow: www.fazerartists.fi and on HELLO STAGE!
Author: Olli Brummer
Comments [1]
Anne Wieben - 2015-05-30 12:35
Thanks for the insight!
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