A brief look into the world of a composer agent.
What Is a Composer Agent?
We’re often asked, why do composer agents exist and what do we actually do all day?
The answer: well, we wear two hats really:
1) We look out for our composer clients and try to drive their careers in the direction they’d like them to go in.
Life is stressful, particularly when our clients are busy composing. It’s hard to be both the talent and the person going out there to procure the next job…
So it’s a pretty fundamental part of the role of being an agent that we keep our composers both updated about upcoming productions and that we’re generating ways to help further their careers.
Day-to-day, that means a fair amount of networking and contacting new productions, introducing ourselves to new producers and meeting existing clients, attending industry conferences and lunches with clients (one of the perks of this job).
For us, it’s about developing trusted relationships on our composers’ behalf.
2) We try to make producers lazy.
That means, in reality, liaising with producers to help them find the best-suited composer for their production every time, so they don’t have to devote precious time to doing it.
Producing a 52-part animation series or 6-part natural history series is no easy task. And sourcing a composer with the right flair and experience for the job can be tricky, particularly when time is limited.
We’re often told by producers that it’s advantageous to have composers with different skillsets under one roof so-to-speak. With a few keywords about what the producer’s needs are musically, we use that info to recommend the right composer within a very quick timeframe.
Then there are also the commissioning contracts and negotiations (an important part of any agent’s skillset). While the producer and composer can start the creative conversation, we liaise with the production to iron out the paperwork and act as the go-between for any queries and issues between production and composer. So it’s usually a fluid and fairly quick process to get things off the ground.
There is a third, more general but equally as important, role of an agent. We’re always on-tap to help our composers, offering a listening ear, providing some honest advice whenever needed and being a fresh pair of ears to give opinions on music from time to time – all of which ensures the music process is as effective as it possibly can be.