Monday, October 19, 2009

October 19, 2009 News

Thanks to the wonderful Lucy Pollak for passing along the latest arts contacts from the LA Times, with the caveat that “this is still all in flux for now.”

Kelly Scott - Theater
Sherry Stern - Dance and Music
Bret Israel - Art & Architecture

In other LA Times news, the magazine is taken back under the newsroom’s control and Editor Annie Gilbar is let go, with Nancie Clare, previously deputy editor, assuming Annie’s title. Read the press release here.

And according to Cision:

Martin Miller has been named TV editor at the Los Angeles Times. He most recently was an assistant arts and entertainment editor for the daily and before that, he was a television staff writer. He also has covered health and lifestyle and was a writer in the features department.

Thanks also to Larry Mayer, who passes this along…

KCSN dropped ALL classical music announcers and is now automated, at least from 6am -6pm weekdays.

Writer Steven Mikulan is gone from LA Weekly. Details here.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

October 12, 2009 News

SO MUCH to catch up on… I’ve been super swamped without a second to post. Some of the info below is a little old, but in case you missed it, it’s all here. Thanks to everyone who wondered if I’d fallen off the edge of the earth!

DAMN! This last week from Cision:

Michelle Grabicki has departed The Hollywood Reporter, where she served as associate editor, features and oversaw the About Town page. No replacement has been named.


1. GREAT NEWS from the Times for us PR types with fundraiser-party clients: Ellen Olivier is now covering same for the Image section! She writes:

"Scene & Heard"… will also be online, and feature additional photos.
Reach her (ellen.olivier)


The Los Angeles Times today announced Lisa Fung as Online Arts & Entertainment Editor. In her new role she will oversee round-the-clock multimedia coverage of all arts and entertainment, including Calendar, The Envelope and Company Town, as well as more than a dozen blogs. In addition, Fung is charged with developing new online properties and services to enhance The Times' standing as the definitive source for news, information and analysis about pop culture, celebrity, movies, music, television, social media, video games, arts, culture, awards and the business of Hollywood.

Full story here.

Congratulations, Lisa!

3. SEAN GALLAGHER is the Times’ web site’s new managing editor replacing Meredith Artley who left to join

4. From Cision:

JIM NEWTON [stepped] down Sept. 28 as editorial page editor of the Los Angeles Times. He will become an editor at large of the section, and deputy editorial page editor Nicholas Goldberg will replace him as editor.

4. This, also from Cision, happened a while ago…

DONNA FRAZIER is no longer at the Los Angeles Times. She had served as the executive editor of the Image section… No replacement has been named, but relevant pitches can be directed to Image editor Booth Moore.

And of course you’ve all heard by now last week’s announcement of the demise of Gourmet Magazine, after the November issue, and three other Conde Nast publications: Cookie, Elegant Bride, and Modern Bride. Here’s the New York Times’ take on it.

Good to hear from the wonderful Michael Burr in early September. He writes:

Just wanted to let you know that I will be reporting for Please keep me in mind for any interesting celebrity news, stories and items. Many thanks for your help and I look forward to working with you soon!!

Reach him via -- michaelburrla

Frontiers Editor Aaron Drake writes to say:

I’ll be handling all the Theater Listings and Reviews for the magazine, please direct all Theater-related materials to me – Brian Padgett is no longer working at Frontiers.

The masthead lists Drake alongside the mag’s other Editor Stephan Horbelt.

Has anyone else used Cision’s Journalist Tweets? They have a free email alert function that I just signed up for to see how/if it works.

Be sure to check out writer Pauline Adamek‘s new site,, which features “timely reviews and information about Los Angeles Theater, Concerts, Opera and Art, also Films and Books.”

The Daily Breeze’s Toni Sciacqua has been promoted from managing editor to editor. According to Cision, the ME post won’t be filled. Follow her here on Twitter. Congrats, Toni!

Congratulations are also in order for AP Music Editor Nekesa Moody, whose nuptials I read about in Sunday’s New York Times; this wonderful wedding section is one of the Times' weekend hightlights for me. The people-driven coverage of mostly ordinary folks and how they met/courted focuses on telling a good tale. For the random famous person covered (not that often), it’s the story rather than their celebrity that’s important -- case in point is the wedding of John Kerry’s daughter, also covered today. Wonder if the LA Times would EVER do anything like that?

Thanks to the fabulous Lucy Pollak, who passed this along last month

Style Section L.A., a website dedicated to showcasing the talents and trends that shape style in Los Angeles, launches [September 9] at

The site was co-founded by veteran L.A. fashion writers Emili Vesilind, Erin Weinger and Andrew Harmon, after they found themselves in the freelance pool following the major downsizing of style reporters at newspapers and magazines last year.

The mission? Marry evocative storytelling and gorgeous photography with modern-day speed and spunk, while cluing users in on the city's rich cultural landscape-from that ultra-happening bar in K-Town and the secret shopping spots of local style arbiters to the profound social implications of side ponytails.

Stories in the first month include a profile on L.A. designer Kimberly Ovitz, a video of American Idol's Jackie Tohn navigating L.A.'s jankiest thrift stores, a fashion shoot spotlighting L.A. fashion designers with "Fame" co-star Kay Panabaker and a feature story and portrait series that calls out some of L.A.'s (somewhat) unsung influentials, including dancer/choreographer Ryan Heffington and Wren designer Melissa Coker.

Emili Vesilind is a former Fashion Staff Writer for the Los Angeles Times and West Coast Retail Editor for WWD. Andrew Harmon is the former West Coast Editor of men's fashion bible DNR, and current Senior News Editor for The Advocate. Erin Weinger is a former Fashion Staff Writer for the Los Angeles Times.

They suggest using this email editors. But we know better. See specific contacts on their Contact page.

Ran into respected music writer Tim Mangan at the Hollywood Bowl in late August, which reminded me that I need to read his arts blog at the Orange County Register more often. You do too. Check it out here.

Same for Al Martinez's work. Check out his post on his 60th wedding anniversary.

From the New York Observer some weeks ago:

Jon Landman, the New York Times' deputy managing editor, is the paper's new culture editor.

More here.

Thanks to mannfolk PR's Omar Cunningham for passing along this info (some weeks ago) from Signature Magazine's publishers:

Hellin Kay has been appointed the Editor-in-Chief and Creative Director of Signature Magazine. She joins us with over a decade of experience in every facet of the fashion industry and publications in the U.S. and abroad. Most recently she was West Coast Fashion Editor for WWD in Los Angeles . Hellin has been staff Fashion Director and photographer for Russian Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Elle and Spoon Paris as well as a freelance contributor to L'Uomo Vogue, British Vogue, i-D, Elle, Nylon, French, Blackbook, Celeste, and Preen. Her personal photography work and short films have been published in books and exhibited in New York, London and Moscow .

Kay's email address at is hkay@.

The magazine’s full masthead is here.

This (from the New York Post) is also from a while ago, so I don’t know if there have been any updates, but if it’s true, it's very sad:

After failing to sell their guidebook empire for $200 million, Upper West Siders Tim and Nina Zagat are not only putting off their retirement plans, they're struggling to keep it afloat.

Over the last three decades, the pioneering Zagats -- he's 69 and she's 67 -- have turned a hobby that started in a Manhattan apartment kitchen into a brand that sells millions of books, reviewing eateries, hotels and leisure spots in 104 countries. But it is losing substantial ground to online rivals, including Chowhound and Yelp, said a source familiar with the matter.

Yelp? PLEASE. I can't begin to count the number of incredibly annoying phone calls I've gotten from their seemingly endless sales reps wanting to help a client "enhance" their presence on Yelp – for a few bucks, of course.

Read about how "KTLA-TV’s Leila Feinstein will now create and produce a daily healthcare initiative" in this LA Observed post.

Per an auto-reply email last month, Aimee Machado no longer works at KPCC.

Johan Graham, who runs a benefit auction firm, was (in August) looking for a PR specialist "to help me get my name out. If you are interested please contact me at 760-954-9964 and feel free to check my web-site at"

OK… that’s it for now!