Seth Hurwitz Steps Aside As I.M.P. Chairman To Address Misdemeanor Criminal Charge

Seth Hurwitz
The Washington Post / Contributor/Getty Images
– Seth Hurwitz
owner of the popular 9:30 Club outside on a recent Friday night. (Sept. 25, 2009)

Seth Hurwitz is stepping away from his role as chairman of his concert promotion company, I.M.P., effective immediately in order to address a misdemeanor criminal charge stemming from his arrest by Montgomery County, Md., police Aug. 21 on suspicion of soliciting an act of prostitution from a licensed massage and physical therapist.

COO Donna Westmoreland will head the company in his stead, with the assistance of talent buyer Melanie Cantwell and production chief Ed Stack.

Hurwitz, a highly regarded independent promoter, co-founded the company and Washington, D.C.’s famed 9:30 Club in 1980. The company also operates The Anthem, on the city’s waterfront, which opened in 2017 and has an agreement to operate Merriweather Post Pavilion in Columbia, Md.

The announcement was made in a letter to staff early this evening (Aug. 24) and reads as follows:

To all staff: 


As I’ve said previously, I’m very sorry for any embarrassment and stress that my situation is causing all of you.  I don’t want this to affect the amazing work that you do or impact how you make our venues what they are. That wouldn’t be fair.

As anyone who knows our concert and venue businesses well is aware, I don’t have much to do with actually running them these days, but to eliminate distraction, I’m stepping aside for the time being until the matter is resolved. As always, Donna Westmoreland, our COO, will be at the helm. She’s been with us for 29 years and has been the leading force of the company for about a dozen years, so together with Melanie Cantwell and her booking team and Ed Stack running production, as well as each of the venue managers – and all of you – I know this will be seamless.

I want to let the legal process take its course without my issue getting in the way of our business.  I’m looking forward to a positive resolution to my situation and thank you as always for all you do to make us the company we are.


See you in a while…but not right now.