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Back 2 School Special: Truth behind College Buying

This panel will include industry professionals that have expertise in artist management, territorial and non-territorial agenting and college promoting. The purpose of the panel is to understand why artists play colleges (advantages/disadvantages) and the process behind working with college students to ensure the artist is happy with the outcome of the show. We will delve into the differences between colleges using middle agents and college students/advisers that work directly with talent agents. We will also discuss the positives/negatives of having territorial college agents working with Universities as opposed to RA agents of the artists advocating for their clients.


  1. • Why do musicians play colleges? What are the incentives? • What goes into deciding if an artist will play a college date or not?
  2. • What are the relationships between a college promoter and an agent? How do you come to an agreement on artist fees and the overall production of the show? • What are restrictions colleges have, that promoters such as Live Nation and AEG don’t have?
  3. • Why do some colleges work directly with talent agency’s and why do some use middle buyers (IE Pretty Polly, Concert Ideas)? • Why should colleges pay more money they regular promoters? What is the future of routing tours though colleges to keep talent fee's lower and closer to the price regular promoters pay.
  4. • What is the future for artists playing colleges? Do you forsee it as becoming more popular due to less money on recorded sales, or do you see it as less popular?
  5. • How do you route a college tour for an artist, when most college have a limited budget per year? • Is there a major advantage in having a territorial agent at your talent agency as opposed to having the artist’s RA agent work with the colleges?



Kelly Benini, Concert Director at Syracuse University, University Union of Syracuse University

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