Flying Music Biography
Joint Managing Director
Joint Managing Director
From a base in the South of England Paul Walden promoted virtually all of the major touring acts in the seventies, from Supertramp to Arthur Brown, David Bowie and The Who. In 1976 he expanded into Artist Management and Agency with various solo artistes and groups taken on board including Voyager, Leo Sayer, Springwater and Paul Nicholas. The establishment of a successful music publishing company followed and in 1982 he set up Flying Music and Flying Records.
In his native Scotland Derek Nicol promoted almost all of the major touring acts to visit Scotland during the Sixties, such names as The Searchers, The Troggs, The Kinks, Otis Redding, Deep Purple, The Who, Elton John, Marc Bolan and Fleetwood Mac. In 1971 he moved to London where he set up Mountain Management and managed Nazareth and the Sensational Alex Harvey Band throughout the seventies. During this time he also established Mountain Records and Mountain Publishing. In 1983 Derek took the decision to join Paul at Flying Music.
Entertaining the nation for 30 years, Flying Music have produced numerous nationwide tours and have presented a wide variety of artists including Stevie Wonder, Van Morrison, Ray Charles, Little Richard, The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Dionne Warwick, Glen Campbell, The Four Tops and many, many more. Flying Music have produced and promoted major arena events including Born To Rock 'n' Roll with Little Richard, Chuck Berry and Fats Domino as well as reuniting the four original Monkees for the first time in 30 years and the global sensation Abba The Show. Flying Music are also renowned for their numerous concert tours including The Solid Silver 60s Show commonly referred to as a British institution, which celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2015. Keeping with this winning formula, Flying Music devised The Solid Gold Rock 'n' Roll Show , its American counterpart The All American Solid Gold Rock 'n' Roll Show and Maximum Rhythm N’ Blues all of which continue to enjoy regular touring and national success.
An innovative approach to creating conceptual brands has also seen Flying Music seamlessly move into the world of theatre. Original shows created by the company include Hollywood and Broadway, The Magic of the Musicals, Salute to Sinatra, What A Feeling - The Rock 'n' Pop Musicals - In Concert, Sweet Soul Music, A Night at The Opera, Dancing in the Streets - Motown’s Greatest Hits which ran continuously for two years in London’s West End and the Olivier Award nominated The Rat Pack Live From Las Vegas which enjoyed a three and a half year non-stop run in London, notching up over 1000 performances. Such is the popularity of The Rat Pack, that it returns to London every Christmas and set a new record when it opened in its eighth West End theatre in December 2011, and the show continues to tour throughout Europe, USA and Canada.
Flying Music joined forces with SJM to present the European premier of Greenday’s hit Broadway musical American Idiot. The 10 week UK tour opened in Southampton to standing ovations and rave reviews, rock fans and regular theatre goes stood side by side at this innovative musical that brought the two genres together. To kick off the show’s two week London run, American Idiot was invited to appear at the What’s on Stage Awards launch where it received a nomination for best touring production. American Idiot was also shortlisted as Best Musical in the Manchester Theatre Awards for its two-week season at the Palace Theatre.
Thriller Live, Flying Music’s production celebrating the career of Michael and the Jackson 5 spent three years touring the UK and Europe before making its West End debut at the Lyric Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue in January 2009 where it continues to play to packed houses, rave reviews and standing ovations. The eldest Jackson brother Tito, attended the premier as a very special guest of honour and commented “I am delighted to attend the opening of the show and excited to see it after watching it grow out of the UK and European tours in 2007. Our music is very much alive and still relevant to the youth of today and it remains part of the fabric of modern day life. This show, with its talented cast, acknowledges and celebrates our music and the sort of entertainment that the Jackson family have created over the last 40 years. It is particularly fitting that the show is opening in the West End as Motown celebrates their 50th anniversary - Motown is where we all started and without Motown there may never have been a Jackson 5!"
Now a mainstay in London’s West End, Thriller Live celebrated its seventh birthday in January 2015 and has played to over 1.6 million people at the Lyric Theatre where it broke records to become the theatre’s longest running show. A second production of the show continues to travel the world, taking in more than 30 countries in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Japan, Brazil, Australia and New Zealand.
Flying Music once again celebrated entering the records books in April 2015 when Thriller Live become the 17th longest running musical in west end history after it overtook the records set by the legendary stage musicals The Sound of Music and My Fair Lady and Oliver.
In 2014, Flying Music partnered with UK Productions to tour the critically acclaimed play, The Kite Runner. Based on Khaled Hosseini’s international bestselling novel and film, The Kite Runner played to sell out audiences and 5 star reviews.
Aside from its successful theatre production and touring business, Flying Music also has a flourishing merchandising, theatre ticketing, video/TV production, general management and corporate event division. Past corporate and private clients include Simon Cowell, Philip Green, Barclays Capital Bank, British Airways, The Evening Standard, Prudential Insurance, Anthony Nolan Trust, The Rainbow Trust, Make A Wish Foundation, Chivas Regal, The National Trust, Serco Group, IMG, Lady Taverners, Hyatt Hotels, Ford Motor Company, The World Travel Awards, Sporting Club Monte Carlo, Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, Morrison’s Supermarket and The Variety Club of Great Britain.
Director of Finance and HR
Andy joined Flying Music in 2007 and has responsibility for finance, human resources, IT and Office administration. Andy qualified as a chartered accountant with KPMG in 1994 and has spent the majority of his career in the media and entertainment industries. Andy has held senior finance roles at Touche Ross, Hertz Europe, IRR Conference and Exhibitions and Omnicom subsidiary The Beanstalk Group among others. Andy is a Fellow of the institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales and holds a degree in Accounting.
Mark joined FMG in 2000 as Associate Promoter, booking/programming and promoting production and touring rock and roll shows for 5 years. After a short break he rejoined FMG in 2009 as General Manager and is responsible for theatrical productions. He has been 25 years in the entertainment business where as Entertainment’s Manager at Butlins he was responsible for a £4m entertainment budget, a 100 strong team, providing entertainment to 6000 guests daily. He has also worked for Pontins and Thomson Gold Holidays
Head of Marketing
Ginette Joined Flying Music Group in July 1998 and has over 15 years experience in marketing commercial theatre. She has worked on West End, UK touring and international touring productions. Most recently as Head of marketing for Flying Music, she has worked on shows including The Rat Pack Live from Las Vegas, Dancing in the Streets and the record breaking Thriller Live. In addition she has overseen high profile marketing campaigns for artists such as winners of The Voice, X Factor and BGT, as well as long established artists of the 60s, 70s and 80s.
Nicholas joined FMG in 2006 and heads sales and has broad experience of the UK and international venue markets built through his time at Flying Music and also as Radio producer with both Global Radio and Talksport.