Above: Rhythm & Vines Festival
Stuart Clumpas has been appointed chairman of Live Nation New Zealand (LNNZ), in a move that coincides with the company taking a controlling stake in the Rhythm and Vines Festival (cap. 25,000).
Clumpas has been a part of LNNZ since 2015, when it took a 70 per cent share in Auckland’s Spark Arena (12,000) – previously known at the Vector Arena, which Clumpas had owned for three years with partner Bruce MacTaggart. He retains a 30 per cent stake in the venue.
“The New Zealand music business has grown in leaps and bounds over the past two decades, and this new role gives me the opportunity to make sure that Live Nation is at the forefront of ensuring that growth continues,” says Clumpas, who emigrated from the UK in 2001, having created Scotland’s leading promoter DF Concerts and launched 85,000-capacity T In The Park festival, since discontinued.
“While we will always be close geographically to Australia, the demographics of the two countries have moved in different paths, and it’s time to capitalise and build on that in a positive fashion for New Zealand.”
LNNZ have also named Rick Latham and Steve Wheadon as heads of operations and production, respectively. Both will continue to be involved at Spark Arena, while Mark Kneebone moves to head of promotions.
Founded in 2003 Gisborne’s Rhythm and Vines has hosted acts such as Moby, Public Enemy and Mura Masa, and takes place in December.
“By joining forces with Live Nation we can ensure our long-term vision for the event and continue to grow the festival,” says Rhythm and Vines CEO Kieran Spillane. “It will allow us to attract the very best acts.”
Once settled in New Zealand, Clumpas completed the sale of his Scottish businesses to Irish live music entrepreneur Denis Desmond, now non-executive chairman of Live Nation Entertainment in the UK.