Posted On: Nov. 5, 2021
Back to Live Featured Industry - Magnum Opus Management
Debbie Peters focuses on developing new audiences nationally and internationally for some of Canada's finest musicians with a specific focus on discovery of Northern Canadian artists. The founder of Magnum Opus Management, she built the company into an award-winning agency and artist development company from her base of operations in Whitehorse, Yukon. Debbie has placed northern musicians in PEI 2014, the National Arts Centre’s Northern Scene, Pan Am Games, and CBC TV’s Countdown to 2020.
She was instrumental in bringing BreakOut West to Whitehorse in 2011 and 2019, and has produced projects such as A Circumpolar Soundscape featuring Northern and Nordic Indigenous Women; the collaborative New North Collective, a multi-genre music and film experience; and is coproducing Music from the Edges of Canada a showcase of 22 bands from the west, north, and east of the country on 4 stages in a series of online and live concerts. musicfromtheedges.ca Together with Margot Holmes, Debbie is a partner in the Maverick Cooperative; a board member of Agences des arts de la scène / Performing Arts Agencies Canada (AASPAA Canada); and is lead on development of The Pitch: Digital Marketplace for the Performing Arts.
Follow Magnum Opus Management on Instagram.
How are you preparing for the return of the live music industry?
I'm preparing for the return of live on several national fronts. On the booking front, we are still seeing concert and festival presenters postponing shows but are sure grateful that the gigs we had on the books previously have not been lost - just delayed 3 or 4 times. It may take till summer and fall 2022 into 2023 to see the booking open up substantially but happy to see things coming in. In the meantime, the artists we represent have been recording, releasing singles and videos, and writing new shows. They are chomping at the bit to get on the road again. There are two projects that I've been a part of through the pandemic which relate to the broader challenge of discovery of artists and in that regard, we are utilizing our new digital reality and finding new ways to get more artists in front of more concert and festival buyers. One is development of a digital showcase platform for the performing arts called The Pitch (ThePItch.ca). Funded by both the Canada Council for the Arts and the Yukon Government, The Pitch has been close to two years in development and we are onboarding artists, presenters and touring networks now. Exciting days for sure as we head towards launching this. The second project is a #FACTORfunded project which is giving work to upwards of 140+ culture sector workers. Music from the Edges of Canada is launching in just a few days with hybrid concerts from 4 theatres in New Brunswick, Northwest Territories, Yukon and BC. 22 bands in 11 double bills. This is artist discovery in action and my business partner Margot Holmes and I are thrilled to be co-producing these shows with partner venues. You can check it out at musicfromtheedges.ca I think to sum it all up, we've been looking big picture at impactful ways to help musicians get their music out there - pandemic or not. Definitely I've never been busier.
What are you currently excited about in the music industry?
I'm excited about seeing new artists discovered - digitally and live. I believe digital is here to stay so working towards launching The Pitch digital marketplace for all the performing artist is definitely exciting. I see it creating a geographical level playing field for artists based in both rural and remote Canada, digitally speaking. I am excited to see in-person events come back, to connect with colleagues when we can safely gather at industry events.
What is the greatest challenge you face currently, and how can other industry and artists partners help?
We are not out of the woods yet. Touring is still aways away and it is important that some of the measures taken by funders and governments remain in place or that new programs are created to support our industry . Agents and Managers support career development but are often overlooked in funding programs. To grow careers, we need agents and mangers to continue to exist, to see new agencies start up, and to see new agents and managers mentored.
Can you give a shout out to an artist or industry member who is also doing great things in Manitoba?
More on a national level, a shout out to Margot Holmes for joining me as a partner in the Maverick Cooperative, The Pitch and the Edges project. She is truly a visionary and a driving force in her work repping artists and as general manager of the Vancouver Island Symphony Orchestra.