How to get into... Artist Management

How to get into... Artist Management

17th March 2019
How to get into... Artist Management - YPIA Blog
Written by Kimberley Bourlet | 17th March 2019

Job title / industry:
Assistant Artist Manager at Intermusica – a Classical Music Agency

Average starting salary
£21,000

What qualifications /experience do you need?
A degree is needed by most employers, but not necessarily in music (I have a Bachelors in Music). A strong interest in classical music is required and at least one year’s work experience in the industry, but not necessarily in artist management. I did a year at LSO Live (the London Symphony Orchestra’s record label) assisting the marketing and product managers. The ability to speak another language is also highly desired, but not essential. You need excellent organisational skills and the ability to multitask and prioritise quickly and under pressure.

In a nutshell, what is your job?
My job is to assist my artists in the day to day logistics of each engagement. This primarily encompasses keeping their diaries up to date and producing schedules for each engagement, collaborating with marketing and PR companies to produce biographies, photos and essential marketing materials. I also process contracts, negotiate fees and expenses, produce invoices for promoters and check artist statements. Sending flight and accommodation options and on occasion booking these on an artist’s behalf is also a key part of my role. Maintaining a thorough knowledge of artists’ careers, repertoire and on-going artistic matters is important in addition to representing the company at concerts, external meetings and business events. It’s quite a broad, all-encompassing role!

Best part of the job
Meeting the artists, supporting them at their concerts and seeing how my assistance has influenced an engagement is very satisfying. I also thoroughly enjoy networking and meeting other industry professionals from all over the world.

Downsides to the job
Overtime is often unpaid and the workload can be large and stressful, however once you’ve found a system to help with this, it’s certainly manageable. I have multiple to-do lists and chat to my fellow assistants regularly. Everyone is in the same boat from time to time.

What does a typical day look like?
In the morning, I’ll spend 20 minutes filing emails and replying to urgent requests. As we work with promoters, agencies and PR companies all over the world, lots of emails come in overnight so I find it helpful to sort these first. A high number of urgent requests can take most of the day to sort out. If I have time after that, I check if any visas need sorting, long haul flights need booking, contracts need processing/chasing and look ahead to future engagements to see if I can get anything sorted in advance. We often have internal meetings and attending those is essential, and often in the evenings there are concerts, or sometimes industry meetings.

How did you get into Artist Management?
I got into artist management through my professional placement at LSO Live. Part of my job was to look for opportunities to sell their recordings, so I made a spreadsheet listing all their forthcoming concerts and I found Intermusica’s website through checking concert schedules. I’d always be interested in artist management having interviewed a friend’s sister who also works for a classical music agency, and a close friend of mine is also an associate artist manager. I applied for the job and have been at Intermusica ever since!

What one piece of advice would you give to someone wanting to go into Artist Management?
I recommend speaking to people who currently work in an agency. I did and they gave me the most invaluable advice. Internships, especially in artist management, will make you invaluable to employers, so try and get as much experience as you can.