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Entrepreneur in Residence

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Ken Weiss (Entrepreneur in Practice) has taught the course in Arts Entrepreneurship since 2010 (Econ 327/MUSC 286). For this course in the Entrepreneurship minor, students create their own arts related ventures, pursue related innovative concepts, and develop business plans for the implementation of their operations. Many students of this class have gone on to successfully develop such ventures, even some while still undergraduates. He is a founder of the Society for Arts Entrepreneurship Education (SAEE), a now established and recognized organization that has grown nationally with broadly attended annual conferences at North Carolina State University, Southern Methodist University (SMU) and Ohio State University (OSU).

During the management and development of his first music publishing company, he expanded Gold Hill Music into one of the industry’s most successful independent companies with sales of tens of millions of recordings with Crosby, Stills & Nash (and Young), Fleetwood Mac, Aretha Franklin, Bob Seger, Joe Cocker, and many others. As personal manager to prominent recording and performing artists, he negotiated and conducted the business of recording agreements, related recording activities, promotions, worldwide concert tours, film and television agreements.

Exploiting new opportunities for music, Weiss is also a television and feature film Music Supervisor, having worked on dozens of productions with Woody Allen producer Jean Doumanian, Forrest Gump producer Steve Tisch, director/actor Jason Alexander, producer Samuel Goldwyn, actor/producer Mel Gibson, director/writer Leon Ichaso, and many others, continuing today. He also produced the acclaimed soundtrack albums for the Robert Downey, Jr. feature film The Singing Detective and Universal’s Piñero. His production of the iconic Disco Inferno has been licensed regularly to feature films, television shows, commercials and recordings. He was also a producer for the 2014 Showtime comedy special and home video “Earthquake – These Ain’t Jokes”. The show was shot at the Carolina Theatre in Durham, North Carolina.

Further exploiting the potential growth of the broadcast and live performance media, along with cable television executive Arnie Rosenthal he created Rock & Sock Productions. Rock & Sock went on to produce numerous live concerts, live and closed circuit sporting events, pay per view events, as well as direct their worldwide distribution. Weiss was the Event Producer for the first televised rap music special Rapmania which brought together 43 pioneer hip hop acts performing live at the Apollo Theatre in New York and The Palace in Hollywood. Rock & Sock continues successfully today having produced hundreds of closed circuit and live music and sporting events.

Under his company Bronx Flash Music, Ken signed famed songwriter Frank Wildhorn to an exclusive music publishing deal. In the ensuing five years, Wildhorn became among the most important composers on Broadway having successfully developed numerous musicals including Jekyll & Hyde, The Scarlet Pimpernel, The Civil War, and Dracula while becoming the first American composer in thirty years to have three of those plays run simultaneously on Broadway. Their musical property Rudolf enjoyed a long run in Vienna, Austria with its DVD garnering a Platinum award for sales. New musicals Wonderland and Bonnie & Clyde were staged on Broadway in 2011 and Jekyll & Hyde opened its Broadway revival in 2013. The Count of Monte Cristo, Carmen, Excalibur, Death Note and others have enjoyed great success in major European and Asian territories. The Wildhorn music properties have been nominated for 11 Tony Awards. Weiss’s company continues to exclusively control the Wildhorn music rights.

Ken Weiss has been honored with various industry achievement awards for his work and for the performances of his musical properties. He has been awarded 20 Gold and Platinum records and a number of ASCAP and BMI achievement certifications for the broadcast of his song properties. He is a long time Grammy voting member of The Recording Academy and the Latin Grammys as well as a member of ASCAP and BMI and the National Music Publishers Association.

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