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Robin Gibb Confirmed As Keynote Speaker At Popkomm

BERLIN (VIP-NEWS) – For three days experts from the music and entertainment sectors from all over the world, together with representatives of politics, business, the arts and the media, will be participating in the discussions and in the workshops.

Robin Gibb, Wim Wenders and Petri Lundén are the first keynote speakers to be confirmed for this year’s Popkomm Conference which takes place from 8 to 10 October in Berlin.

On the opening day (October 8) Popkomm will welcome Robin Gibb, one of the world’s most successful singers, composers and lyricists, who is also the President of the International Confederation of Societies of Authors and Composers (CISAC), the unique organization serving authors worldwide. Robin Gibb was born in Douglas, Isle of Man, the son of English parents, twin brother of Maurice, younger brother of Barry and subsequently the older brother of Andy Gibb. He was already performing in public with his brothers at the age of six and by the end of the 1960s they had made a name for themselves as the Bee Gees. During the same period he achieved his first solo successes, which included “Saved by the Bell“. The Bee Gees achieved countless successes in the second half of the 1970s in connection with the disco wave, in particular with the soundtrack to the film “Saturday Night Fever“. It is currently estimated that, in various forms, their record sales have exceeded 220 million, making this band one of the most successful acts of all time. Parallel with his recordings with the group Robin Gibb has continued to pursue a solo career, with hits such as “Juliet” (1983), ”Boys do fall in Love” (1984), “Walls Have Eyes” (1985) and “Magnet” (2003).

As the president of CISAC, which represents 222 authors’ societies in 118 countries, Robin Gibb is more qualified than perhaps anyone else to initiate the discussions about the competition law decision which the European Commission issued mid-July this year against 24 European collecting societies. In the debate about online licensing, cultural diversity and creators’ income, Gibb will represent the position of authors and composers from around the world as well as CISAC’s view on the recent EC decision. The keynote address by Robin Gibb will be followed by a panel discussion on the subject of “Authors’ societies in the EU – following the first wave of competition“, whose participants will consist of creators as well as representatives of copyright societies, publishers and the users.

Also launching a discussion on the first day of Popkomm will be Petri Lundén, Chairman of the International Music Managers’ Forum (IMMF). The IMMF represents 15 music managers’ forums from all over the world, in Australia, Asia, Africa, North America and Europe. Born in Finland, at the age of 18 Petri Lundén was already acquiring experience in the music business as the promoter of the Jönköping Festival in Sweden, and three years later, in 1984, he set up an artists’ agency, Scandinavian Music Service (SMS). In 1993 he founded Motor SE as a booking, promotional and management agency, with offices in Copenhagen, Denmark, and in Oslo, Norway. By 1998 Motor SE had been sold to Scandinavia’s largest promotion agency, EMA Telstar, which itself has since been taken over by Live Nation, USA.

As Chairman of the IMMF and as a music manager, the best known of his current acts being “The Cardigans”, Lundén represents a professional group that is at the centre of the discussions about a 360° business model, namely: managers. To emphasize their importance to the industry Popkomm is collaborating closely with the IMMF this year. Consequently the IMMF is presenting yet another item on the agenda of the Popkomm Conference: “WIPO versus consumers – one world copyright law or just a talking shop?” will deal with the subsequently abortive agreement by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), which was ratified in 1996, concerning the way in which the management of rights could be implemented in the digital age.

On Thursday Wim Wenders, internationally one of the best-known and most celebrated German movie directors, will address Popkomm. Wim Wenders was born in Düsseldorf. As one of the most influential representatives of the New German Cinema in the Seventies, his films include “The American Friend” (1978), “Paris, Texas” (1984), “Wings of Desire” (1987) and “Buena Vista Social Club” (1999). They have received numerous prestigious awards. A large selection of his photographs, entitled “Pictures from the Surface of the Earth”, has been exhibited in numerous museums and art institutions around the world since 2001. Wim Wenders has also published many books of essays and photographs. He is President of the European Film Academy, a recipient of the order Pour le Mérite, and lives with his wife, the photographer Donata Wenders, in Los Angeles and in Berlin. In his new film “Palermo Shooting”, which is going to be released in Germany on 20. November 2008, Campino, singer with the German band Die Toten Hosen, is starring along with Giovanna Mezzogiorno and Dennis Hopper. Also appearing with them, in a guest role, is Lou Reed.

The filmmaker, who has shown a particular affinity with music throughout his work, will be opening the second group of topics at the Popkomm Conference by investigating the relationship between film and music. This keynote address will be followed by a discussion under the heading of “Soundtracks – the black sheep of the film industry”, which will examine the conflict between artistic vision and the reality of the budgetary constraints on film production. On Friday the Peacefulfish agency will present a panel discussion entitled “Pop the Score and make the Buzz” to examine the possible key factors in creating a successful movie soundtrack.

The Conference, together with the Exhibition and the Festival, forms part of the integrated Popkomm concept which, from 8 to 10 October 2008, will provide visitors and guests from around the world with more than 30 panel discussions, talks, workshops, papers and keynote addresses.