Downtown Summer School Reimagines the Internship

Seeking to reimagine summer internships impacted by COVID-19, our parent company Downtown Music Holdings recently announced the launch of Downtown Summer School — a week-long virtual program for continued learning about many aspects of the music business. The global program will broadcast live the week of July 27 with morning sessions starting at 12 p.m. EDT, followed by afternoon sessions at 3 p.m. EDT. Though intended for students, recent graduates, and others looking to enter the music industry, registration is open for all interested participants free of charge.

After 10 years of engaging on-site summer internships for students around the world, Downtown is committed to offering alternate learning opportunities this summer — not only to students, but to a broader, diverse community interested in the music business — in lieu of traditional internships.

"We’re excited to reimagine our internship program for a virtual audience this year and fuel the next generation of music business leaders and creative entrepreneurs,” said Justin Kalifowitz, CEO of Downtown Music Holdings. “We have an opportunity to reach a wider audience and educate more students than ever before. A major part of our vision for a more equitable and innovative music ecosystem is cultivating talent and demonstrating our appreciation for the business side of music. Downtown Summer School will help participants understand the building blocks of the industry so we can continue to support a thriving creative class, now and in the future.”

While Downtown Summer School is primarily targeted at high school and college students, and those who are in the early stages of their careers, the program is available to anyone around the world. It will feature panel discussions with executives from various Downtown divisions, including Downtown Music Publishing — as well as interviews with executives from other companies like TikTok, Warner Records, SunTrust, BeatStars and SuperVision, hosted by Downtown Music Holdings CEO Justin Kalifowitz.

Participants are encouraged to sign up before July 22 by registering on the Downtown Summer School landing page. See the full schedule and lineup below.

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Global Creative Process

MONDAY, JULY 27 AT 12 P.M. EDT

Taeko Saito (Downtown Music Publishing)
Laura Bedekian (Downtown Music Publishing)
Davina Merchant (Downtown Music Publishing)
Moderator: Roberto Neri (Downtown Music Holdings)

Executives from the Downtown Music Publishing global creative team will discuss the changing landscape of chart-topping songwriting, production and artist development. With perspectives from Tokyo, Paris and London — and extensive experience in global collaboration — Taeko, Laura and Davina will share unique insights and experiences from their diverse backgrounds.

INTERVIEW WITH BEATSTARS FOUNDER & CEO ABE BATSHON AT 3 P.M. EDT

Music Streamed

TUESDAY, JULY 28 AT 12 P.M. EDT

Joe Conyers III (Downtown Music Holdings)
Christiaan Kröner (FUGA)
Chinua Green (Downtown Music Holdings)
Moderator: Anna Siegel (FUGA)

Music streaming has become the dominant way in which fans discover, consume and share their favorite songs. Global platforms like Spotify and Apple Music not only compete with YouTube and Amazon, but are increasingly pitted against regional players such as India’s JioSaavn and China’s QQ Music, a division of Tencent. Chinua, Joe and Christiaan are at the forefront of collaborating with these services and will discuss the unique ways in which Downtown clients work with these platforms.

INTERVIEW WITH WARNER RECORDS UK HEAD OF A&R JOE KENTISH AT 3 P.M. EDT

Music and Screen

WEDNESDAY, JULY 29 AT 12 P.M. EDT

Jedd Katrancha (Downtown Music Holdings)
Rachael Kruk (Downtown Music Publishing)
Russel Howard (Signature Tracks)
Moderator: Emily Stephenson (Downtown Music Publishing)

The COVID-19 lockdown found explosive growth at Netflix, Hulu and video on demand services. Behind every show are composers, songwriters or artists that provide its soundtrack. Downtown Music Publishing’s Jedd Katrancha, Rachael Kruk and Signature Track’s Russell Howard will discuss the future of music on screen, as global production comes back to life.

INTERVIEW WITH MUSIC CONSULTANT & OWNER OF SUPERVISION SUE JACOBS AT 3 P.M. EDT

Not From the Biz

THURSDAY, JULY 30 AT 12 P.M. EDT

Heli Del Moral (CD Baby)
David Dormon (Downtown Music Holdings)
Shawn Li (Downtown Music Holdings)

The music industry is often considered an insular business that is difficult for “outsiders” to penetrate. Downtown companies have found tremendous value in recruiting executives from wide ranging backgrounds to bring fresh perspective to a fast changing industry. With backgrounds in media, corporate law and technology, Heli, David and Shawn will share the unique paths they took to the roles they have today.

INTERVIEW WITH MANAGING DIRECTOR OF ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRIES GROUP AT SUNTRUST ROBINSON HUMPHREY CJ JOHNSON AT 3 P.M. EDT

Age of Independence

FRIDAY, JULY 31 AT 12 P.M. EDT

Molly Neuman (Songtrust)
Joel Andrew (CD Baby)
Moderator: Johanna Rivera (CD Baby)

Independent artists have been charting their own course for decades, but have experienced a true revolution in the streaming era. Molly and Joel, two lifelong champions of independent music, will discuss why independent music is growing at four times the rate of the industry and how artist platforms empower independence today.

INTERVIEW WITH TIKTOK/BYTEDANCE HEAD OF LABEL LICENSING & PARTNERSHIPS TRACY GARDNER AT 3 P.M. EDT

Please note: full schedule and lineup are subject to change.