Columbia Artists Management Inc, rep for legendary artists, to shut down

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jserraglio
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Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Columbia Artists Management Inc, rep for legendary artists, to shut down

Post by jserraglio » Mon Aug 31, 2020 1:16 pm

CAMI represented many of the leading conductors, among them Herbert von Karajan, Leonard Bernstein, James Levine, Eugene Ormandy, Antal Dorati and Otto Klemperer. Its pianists included Vladimir Horowitz and Van Cliburn. and its singer roster had Leontyne Price, Renata Tebaldi, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf, Risë Stevens, Marian Anderson, Richard Tucker and Jussi Björling.

https://www.seattletimes.com/business/c ... shut-down/
Last edited by jserraglio on Tue Sep 01, 2020 5:12 am, edited 1 time in total.

maestrob
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Re: Columbia Artists Management Inc, rep for legendary artists. to shut down

Post by maestrob » Mon Aug 31, 2020 1:46 pm

Wow!

That's tragic. Columbia Artists owns a building just across from Carnegie Hall on West 57th Street in Manhattan that contains a small auditorium (CAMI Hall) used for both public programs and auditions by all the major agents in the NY area. Opera companies from around the world used to hold auditions for up and coming NY singers there. While I was building an audience for my vocal competition, I presented quite a few programs there in the year before I moved into Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall.

They were quite encouraging of my efforts, and I was sad to leave them.

At the time, I considered CAMI to be the top managing agency in the world.

A great loss to the music world. :(

barney
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Location: Melbourne, Australia

Re: Columbia Artists Management Inc, rep for legendary artists. to shut down

Post by barney » Mon Aug 31, 2020 6:52 pm

Great memories, Brian. And, as you say, a very sad announcement.

Modernistfan
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Re: Columbia Artists Management Inc, rep for legendary artists, to shut down

Post by Modernistfan » Tue Sep 01, 2020 8:20 am

I respectfully disagree. This is probably the best thing that happened to classical music since the introduction of recording. Orchestras and other presenting organizations have been financially strapped by their seeming need to pay “superstars” managed by agencies such as CAMI excessively large amounts; the “superstars” then show up and mail in a performance of a warhorse that they have seemingly played 10,000 times. Hopefully, this will open up the opportunity for new talent to emerge, talent that will take more risks with respect to repertoire, interpretation, and building a new and more diverse audience for classical music.

maestrob
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Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 11:30 am

Re: Columbia Artists Management Inc, rep for legendary artists, to shut down

Post by maestrob » Tue Sep 01, 2020 9:07 am

Modernistfan wrote:
Tue Sep 01, 2020 8:20 am
I respectfully disagree. This is probably the best thing that happened to classical music since the introduction of recording. Orchestras and other presenting organizations have been financially strapped by their seeming need to pay “superstars” managed by agencies such as CAMI excessively large amounts; the “superstars” then show up and mail in a performance of a warhorse that they have seemingly played 10,000 times. Hopefully, this will open up the opportunity for new talent to emerge, talent that will take more risks with respect to repertoire, interpretation, and building a new and more diverse audience for classical music.
Interesting POV. I don't disagree entirely, actually.

Having spent more than a decade promoting unknown young artists, I can see your point. However, great and famous musicians will IMHO continue to be great and famous no matter who is representing them.

My wife's voice teacher who became, in time, a close friend, was Iris Hiskey, Phillip Glass's lead soprano in the debut performance of Einstein on the Beach at the MET (She also recorded the role for Nonesuch records.), as well as the lead in Satyagraha, which she premiered in the Netherlands and in Brooklyn. Iris was a great Bach and Baroque singer as well, but she excelled at contemporary music by composers such as Glass (who wrote a song cycle for her recital debut in NY), Joseph Schwantner, Richard Hundley and Ned Rorem to name a few. Iris studied with one of the top voice teachers in Manhattan (Cornelius Ried: do check out his books on vocal technique), and had a full house at Merkin Hall. They even had to open the balcony for her recital debut. We loved her intriguing repertoire, and she had her politics right, but she never caught on with a major management. Thus, in the midst of an advancing career, she made the decision to leave singing and retire to the suburbs, got married, had kids, and chose to write some very successful children's books!

All because she needed a major management house to promote her beyond Glass's immediate circle of influence.

My point is that great managers are really necessary in the world of music, in spite of your theoretical objections. I, too, wish that contemporary music would be more widely promoted, but "phoned-in" performances are not the fault of management. I lay the blame squarely on overworked artists who must suffer jet-lag and deep cuts in rehearsal time caused by the limited budgets of the orchestras they conduct.

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