Founded in 1989, Hemsing Associates is a publicity agency for individual classical musicians, ensembles, festivals, and, special projects, including visual, theatrical, and literary endeavors.
Our firm currently represents organist Paul Jacobs, pianists Alfred Brendel, Till Fellner, Marc-André Hamelin, Jon Nakamatsu, Ursula Oppens, Weiyin Chen, and Xiayin Wang, as well as the conductor and pianist Ian Hobson; conductor Vincent La Selva, conductor and composer Anthony Barrese; clarinetist Charles Neidich; guitarist Christoph Denoth; and the organizations Concert Artists Guild, International Performing Artists, Montreal Chamber Music Festival, New York Grand Opera, New York International Piano Competition, and Tafelmusik.
Over the years our roster has included the Academy of Ancient Music; Andreas Scholl, Apollo's Fire, Asian Youth Orchestra (Sergiu Comissiona); Dicapo Opera Theatre; Juillard String Quartet; Munich Chamber Orchestra (Christoph Poppen); New York Collegium (Andrew Parrott); Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de México (Enrique Diemecke); Orquestra de São Paulo (John Neschling); Orpheus; New York Festival of Song; Philharmonia of the Nations (Justus Franz); Red Army Chorus & Dance Company; Saint Louis Symphony (Hans Vonk); Stavanger Symphony (Fabio Biondi); Salzburg Festival (Gerard Mortier); Spoleto Festival USA, Tchaikovsky Opera and Ballet, Russia; Temple University Symphony Orchestra, and the Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, as well as pianists Arnaldo Cohen, Barry Douglas, Bruno Leonardo Gelber, and Garrick Ohlsson; violinists Maria Bachmann, Jennifer Koh, and Kyoko Takezawa; cellists Matt Haimovitz and Julian Lloyd-Weber; clarinetists Michael Collins and Jon Manasse; conductors Antonio de Almeida, Spiros Argiris, Sergiu Comissiona, Enrique Diemecke, JoAnn Falletta, Bernhard Klee, and Hans Vonk. (For a complete list, please see below.)
The Future of Publicity: Some Thoughts
There are unsung heroes in many lines of work, but today’s classical musicians struggle harder than ever to be heard above the white noise of celebrity-driven publicity. A proliferation of first-rate performers competing for a small number of meaningful engagements has sharpened the necessity for differentiation among artists. Add to this the burgeoning of online outlets for self-expression and an annual influx of conservatory graduates numbering in the millions, and it becomes apparent that what it takes to be recognized is a carefully thought-through career strategy. Here’s where the classical music publicist can make a difference.
Over the centuries a fairly fixed number of people have remained interested in hearing old and new music; where once they listened to concerts in a salon or public venue, they now download and watch symphonies, arias, operas, and chamber music on YouTube in addition to attending live performances or collecting recordings. Some of the performance venues or methods may have changed, often blurring the boundaries between what is considered high and low art, but the desire to hear music of originality has remained a constant.
The classical music publicist must cope with irreversible changes: publishers and editors of traditional newspapers and print journals are scrambling to make it possible for their outlets to exist in a different configuration. To meet these new conditions Hemsing Associates has developed contacts with the burgeoning classical music and general interest online outlets, building on a strong twenty-year relationship with critics nationally and internationally. Many of the world’s most distinguished journalists still write for the traditional media and have supplemented their output with sophisticated and lively blogs; Hemsing Associates continues to reach these writers. Accuracy and speed are indispensable when announcing events, but the language that can distinguish one performer (or performers) from his peer has to catch the eye of busy and overburdened journalists. Despite complaints of standardization in contemporary performance styles, Hemsing Associates believes that no two artists are the same. Each individual has spent a lifetime—through hard work, reflection, and intuition—cultivating a singular approach to the music he carries within him. We do our best to bring the “story” of these special qualities to the favorable attention of the media, being careful to focus our efforts on matters of real musical substance, not on “style” alone.
For institutional accounts, we try to position client organizations in the forefront of contemporary cultural developments, making certain that all of our written and visual materials relating to a client institution reflect a high level of professionalism, worthy of the institutions we represent.
In recognition of the increasingly global nature of our artists’ engagements, Hemsing Associates was the first New York classical music public relations firm to handle publicity throughout Europe. In our main office we have language capability in German, French, Spanish, Polish, and Russian. We promote our artists on the Continent and, on a more limited basis, in Asia. Our main emphasis, however, remains strong in the print, electronic, and internet media, nationally and locally, in the United States and Canada.
We recognize the effects—both bad and good—of the decentralization of the recording industry and try to exploit the opportunities this trend can offer; we do our utmost to promote our artists’ recordings in an overcrowded market. Our publicity, marketing, and advertising campaigns for many CDs have generated reviews, in-store promotions, radio airplay, feature stories, and—in some cases—have led to concert engagements.
For emerging artists, performers wanting to launch a CD, and experienced musicians looking for a platform to present particular repertoire, we offer the possibility of producing concerts at venues ranging from the smallest to the most prestigious, from off the beaten track to mainstream. We have produced and promoted events at Steinway Hall; Yamaha Artists Services Piano Salon at Yamaha Artists Services; Faust Harrison; Klavierhaus; Merkin Concert Hall; Symphony Space; Kaufman Hall at the 92nd Street Y; Miller Theater at Columbia University; Howard Gilman Opera House at the Brooklyn Academy of Music; Walter Reade Theater, Alice Tully Hall and Avery Fisher Hall at Lincoln Center, and Weill Hall, Zankel Hall, and Stern Auditorium at Carnegie Hall, and many others. We handle all technical details from ticket orders, contracts, and stage requirements to promoting the event to the media and everything in between: coordinating all the program elements including repertoire, biography, photographs, and program notes; designing posters, postcards, and brochures (we have an in-house graphics designer); filling the hall and inviting members of the classical music world, including managers and recordings executives; and organizing pre- and post-concert receptions and dinners.
As an accredited advertising agency, we have an extensive track record designing advertisements for recordings, recital and orchestral tours, and one-off concert performances. We offer the services of an experienced in-house graphics designer, but also gladly work with cooperate with outside designers, and have ties with excellent printing companies. Our rates for placing ads with the leading international and national newspapers, trade journals, and online media, are competitive and the positioning we obtain is advantageous.
In addition to creating the traditional promotional event, we also emphasize career counseling; long-term planning of artistic goals; and the importance of focusing on repertoire and, occasionally, on scheduling discussions, master classes, workshops, and concurrent exhibits around individual concerts or music cycles. Our efforts have yielded extensive local, national, and international coverage in general interest and trade publications. These have had a tangible effect on ticket sales and visibility. We also arrange and coordinate receptions and press conferences in conjunction with performances as well as the launching of new books and recordings, and the United States tours of foreign ensembles. In promoting cultural events, we have worked with the embassies and consulates of Canada, France, Germany, Austria, Greece, Poland, Russia, the United Kingdom as well as the United Nations.
Before founding Hemsing Associates, managing director Josephine Hemsing worked in the 1980s in the press department of the New York Philharmonic under Director Francis Little, for classical music publicist Audrey Michaels, and, for four years, as publicist at the Carson Office headed by Margaret Carson (accounts included Leonard Bernstein, Michael Tilson Thomas, Barry Tuckwell, The MacDowell Colony, and the American Academy and Institute of Arts Letters). During that period, she did graduate studies in theatre at the City University of New York Graduate Center. Hemsing also worked for legendary producer and theatrical agent Peter Witt in New York, in opera and theatre dramaturgy at the Freiburg State Theatre, Germany, on several Off-Off, Off & On Broadway productions, and for six years at ASCAP. Born in Paris to American parents, Hemsing holds a bachelor’s degree (1974) from Sarah Lawrence College (concentration in literature and in music composition and piano) and studied linguistics, philosophy, and literature at the Sorbonne in Paris.
Managing director Dan Cameron worked for the United States Foreign Service for nearly thirty years, serving in Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Japan, Burma, and New Zealand. Taking early retirement from the government, Cameron wrote feature stories and record reviews for various publications, including Ovation magazine, before joining Hemsing Associates in 1990. He holds a master’s degree (1957) in Public Administration from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University, and a bachelor’s degree (1956) from Harvard College, Harvard University (Hans V. Kaltenborn Scholarship). A lifelong collector of classical recordings, he studied piano privately with Wellington Weeks, protégé of composer/pianist Percy Grainger.
Publicity associate Jennifer Cogen joined Hemsing Associates in January 2015, having earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Environmental Science with a minor in Chemistry from New York University in May 2014. She studied the piano from age five through her high school years under Clipper Erickson at the Westminster Conservatory, and became a finalist in the 2010 American Fine Arts Festival, performing in recital at New York City’s Dicapo Opera Theatre. In addition, Ms. Cogen took lessons in voice and the alto saxophone, and was a member of the New Jersey All-Regional and All-State Choirs with whom she performed at Lincoln Center’s Avery Fisher Hall and the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC).
Marie Lamboeuf joined Hemsing Associates as Publicity Assistant in January 2016 after receiving her Master’s degree in Marketing & Management of Creative Industries from the ISC Business School in Paris. Born and raised in Paris, Ms. Lamboeuf studied literature at the Sorbonne, took private piano lessons for 13 years, and participated in the “Cle d’Or” contest in Paris three times. Ms. Lamboeuf came to New York in 2014 and worked first in marketing and publicity at Millisime Inc, a company specializing in the promotion of European wine brands, and then in the music department of the French Embassy in New York, where she helped promote French classical musicians in the United States.
Graphics designer Joanna Malinowska joined Hemsing Associates in 2001 upon receiving her M.F.A. degree in sculpture from Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut. She also holds a B.F.A. degree (1998) from Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ. Malinowska is the recipient of numerous grants, including the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Fellowship (2009), the Smack Mellon Grant and Studio Program, the Barry Cohen Award, Yale University, and the Kosciuszko Foundation Scholarship. Her work has been exhibited at the Tracy Williams Gallery, New York; Boston Center for the Arts; Venetia Kapernekas Gallery, New York; Canada Gallery, New York; Center for Contemporary Arts, Warsaw; Art in General, New York; 1st Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art, Moscow; Whitney Museum Studio and Curatorial Program, New York; International Biennale of Contemporary Art, Prague, among others.
General Interest/News Publications
|The New York Times*
||The New York Review of Books
||Vogue (U.S. and Germany)
|The Wall Street Journal
||Frankfurter Allgemeine (Germany)
|The Washington Post
||Der Spiegel (Germany)
|Los Angeles Times
||Süddeutsche Zeitung (Germany)
||Die Welt (Germany)
||The Independent (U.K.)
||Focus Magazine (Germany)
||Corriere della Sera (Italy)
||Berliner Morgenpost (Germany)
|Toronto Globe & Mail
||Le Monde (France)
||El Pais (Spain)
||The Times (U.K.)
||The Observer (U.K.)
||Figaro Madame (France)
||Neue Zürcher Zeitung (Switzerland)
|The New Yorker
||De Volkskrant (The Netherlands)
|New York Magazine
||Diario Noticias (Portugal)
|Time Out (various cities)
||O Publico (Portugal)
||Das Opernglas (Germany)
|Stereo Review/Sound and Vision
|Piano & Keyboard
||La Lettre du Musicien (France)
||BBC Music Magazine (UK)
||Le Monde de la Musique (France)
||Gramophone (US & UK)
||The Strad (UK)
|American Record Guide
|CBS "Sunday Morning"
||NPR - Morning Edition, Weekend Ed.
||APM - Performance Today
|ABC "World News Tonight"
||MPR - St. Paul Sunday Morning
|Canadian Broadcasting Company
||MPR - A Prairie Home Companion
|E! (Entertainment Network)
||Metropolitan Opera Radio B'casts
|A&E "Breakfast with the Arts"
||WNYC - Around NY, NY & Co.
|New York 1
||WNYC - Soundcheck, WNYC Live
|Bravo/Canada "Artist of the Day"
||WQXR - On the Town
|WNYW "Good Day New York"
|WWOR "Evening News"
||WGBH (Boston) Morning Pro Musica
|Plus numerous local US TV stations
||CBC Toronto/Montreal - various programs
||Plus more than 50 US classical stations
Hemsing Associates has also represented the following:
|William Anderson, guitarist
||Derek Han, pianist
||Garrick Ohlsson, pianist
|Antonio de Almeida, conductor (dec’d)
||Beverly Hoch, soprano
||Carolann Page, soprano
|Spiros Argiris, conductor (dec’d)
||Ching-Yun Hu, pianist
||Todd Palmer, clarinetist
|Fabio Armiliato, tenor
||Roberto Iarussi, tenor
||Marina Piccinini, flutist
||Judith Ingolfsson, violinist
||Vassily Primakov, pianist
|Maria Bachmann, violinist
||Steven Isserlis, cellist
||Philippe Quint, violinist
|Mauricio Barbacini, conductor
||Veronica Jochum, pianist
||Derek Lee Ragin, countertenor
|Gisèle Ben-Dor, conductor
||Kristján Jóhannson, tenor
||Steven Richman, conductor
|Margaret Brouwer, composer
||Ilya Kaler, violinist
||Charles Rosekrans, conductor (dec'd)
|Arnaldo Cohen, pianist
||Susan Kander, composer
||Sonia Rubinsky, pianist
|Michael Collins, clarinetist
||Ljuba Kazarnovskaya, soprano
||Burkard Schliessmann, pianist
|Sergiu Comissiona, conductor (dec’d)
||Jennifer Koh, violin
||Thomas Schultz, pianist
|Jerry Cooke, photographer (dec’d)
||Bernhard Klee, conductor
||Todd Siler, visual artist
|Robert Craft, author, conductor
||Renée Krimsier, flutist
||Valentin Silvestrov, composer
|Marilyn Davidson, visual artist
||Gary Lakes, tenor
||Douglas Smith, author
|Enrique Diemecke, conductor
||David Leisner, guitarist
||Leigh Howard Stevens, marimbist
|Amy Dissanayake, pianist
||Yoni Levyatov, pianist
||Rimma Sushanskaya, pianist
|Barry Douglas, pianist
||Jung Lin, pianist
||Kyoko Takezawa, violinist
|Martin Fischer-Dieskau, conductor
||Julian Lloyd Webber, cellist
||Paul Tobias, cellist
|JoAnn Falletta, conductor
||Ilana Vered, pianist
||Matei Varga, pianist
|Bruno Leonardo Gelber, pianist
||Gary Louie, saxophonist
||Semyon Vekshtein, conductor
|David Delta Gier, conductor
||James Maddalena, baritone
||Hans Vonk, conductor (dec’d)
|Alexander Gilman, violinist
||Jon Manasse, clarinetist
||George Walker, composer
|Michael Gordon, composer
||Robert Mann, violinist
||Franz Waxman, composer (Estate)
|Mark Grey, composer
||Dudana Mazmanishvili, pianist
||Ian Wilson, composer
|Sarah Grunstein, pianist
||John Milton, author
||William Wolfram, pianist
|Andreas Haefliger, pianist
||Spencer Myer, pianist
||Christopher Zimmerman, conductor
|Matt Haimovitz, cellist
|Academy of Ancient Music
||Munich Chamber Orchestra, Christoph Poppen, Music Director
|Adele Marcus Foundation
||New Heritage Music
|American Opera Projects
||New York Collegium
|An die Musik
||New York Festival of Song
|Asian Youth Orchestra
|Berlin Symphony Orchestra
||Orquesta de Baja California Angel Romero, Music Director
|Chicago String Quartet
||Orquestra de São Paulo, John Neschling, Artistic Director
|Concert Artists Guild
||Orqesta Sinfónica Nacional de México, Enrique Diemecke, Music
|DaPonte String Quartet
||Philharmonia of the Nations, Justus Franz, Music Director
|Elisa Monte Dance Company
||Red Army Chorus & Dance Ensemble
|Festival of the Hamptons
||St. George Spirits (California eau-de-vie)
|Friends of French Opera
||Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, Hans Vonk, Music
|| Director (dec’d)
||Salzburg International Festival
||South Dakota Symphony
|Juilliard String Quartet
||Spoleto Festival, USA
||Tarisio (auction house)
|La Musica Festival
||United Nations - UNFPA
|Music of the Americas
||Van Cliburn International Piano Competition
||Van Cliburn International Amateur Piano Competition
||Voices of Ascension