Following 11 years of service as the CEO of PRS Foundation, Vanessa Reed has announced that she been appointed president and CEO of New Music USA.
In her new role, Reed – who was inducted into Music Week’s Women in Music Awards Roll of Honour in 2018 and who also accepted Music Week’s Outstanding Contribution To Charity Award on behalf of the foundation – will be based at New Music USA’s offices in New York City. She replaces former CEO Ed Harsh who has left the organisation to work as a senior staff member of the Kurt Weill Foundaon For Music. Interim CEO Deborah Steinglass will continue to serve in that role until Reed’s arrival.
Speaking about her appointment, Vanessa Reed said: “I believe that music, like every art form, deserves specialist resources and advocates that offer support, build new connections and create a better future for its creators, practitioners and audiences. That’s why I’ve loved every minute of my time at PRS Foundation in the UK and why I’m excited to be taking up this post at New Music USA which plays a crucial role in supporting and connecting America’s many talented and diverse new music communities. I look forward to joining the New Music USA Board and team in New York later this summer.”
Simon Platz, chair of PRS Foundation and managing director of Bucks Music Group commented: “Vanessa has been the powerhouse behind the force that has transformed the Foundation in recent years. Her passion and energy has been infectious and the strategic partnerships she has struck up between the Foundation and all kinds of major funders, music organisations and national bodies like the BBC will be her enduring legacy. We wish her all the best with her exciting new appointment in New York.”
I believe that music, like every art form, deserves specialist resources and advocates that offer support, build new connections and create a better future for its creators, practitioners and audiences
According to its official website, New Music USA – which was formed when American Music Center and Meet The Composer merged in 2011 – cites its mission as being to "support and promote new music created in the United States".
Frederick Peters, Chairman of New Music USA added: “The Board of New Music USA feels profoundly grateful that our search has sourced such an extraordinary woman to lead our organization into the future. Vanessa’s deep knowledge of the field, her boundless energy and fountain of transformative ideas, and her collegial approach make her the perfect leader for New Music USA’s next phase.”
During her time at PRS Foundation, Reed tripled its resources for diverse organisations, composers, songwriters and artists by devising an array of national and international programmes. Included among the initiatives were the Momentum Music Fund created in partnership with Arts Council England (2013), New Music Biennial which began as a programme of commissions for the UK’s Cultural Olympiad (2012) and Women Make Music which was set up in response to the gender gap in music.
During Reed’s tenure as CEO, PRS Foundation has awarded over £26million to over 4,100 new music initiatives; major partners which Reed introduced to the Foundation include Spotify, BBC Music Introducing, BBC Radio 3, PPL, Paul Hamlyn Foundation, the European Commission’s Creative Europe programme and the Arts Councils in Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Ireland.
Across Europe and internationally Vanessa is also known as the founder of Keychange, a pioneering gender balance campaign in music established in 2017 with six European and Canadian partners. In the UK she has served as Board member of both the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic and Chair of Sound UK Arts.
An official press release confirmed that Reed will continue to support the international Keychange programme in a voluntary role as Honorary Chair.
Subscribers can read Music Week's interview with Vanessa Reed about her induction into the Women In Music Roll Of Honour here.