CO-FOUNDER & PRESIDENT
Judi Marmel says her team reached numerous milestones this year. The two that stand out the most to her are the Levity Live acts who moved from clubs to theatres – including comedian Mark Normand, who is headed to Australia in late May – and the company’s staff tripling in size.
Marmel concurs with many in the business that the demand for live is insatiable. She says, “We’re working harder than ever because, certainly in the comedy business, this boom is everything everyone promised it was going to be and then some.”
The boom is apparent at the box office. Levity Live clients include Sebastian Maniscalco, the top grossing comedian on Pollstar’s 2022 Year End North American chart with $48.9 million, and Bert Kreischer, the third highest grossing comedian at $25 million.
When Marmel thinks of the joy of connecting fans with live, she says “there’s nothing that beats that feeling. No matter what kind of entertainment it is, whether it’s sports or music or comedy. In the comedy world, the reason I think it’s more robust than it’s certainly ever been, is I think the consumer appreciates freedom of speech First Amendment rights probably more than they ever have.”
While she and the rest of the industry work to balance all the new gigs coming their way, she emphasizes a need to spread kindness to one another. “Trying to have patience and elongate timelines on sales to give people enough time to be able to do creative elements the way they really want [goes a long way],” Marmel says.
Marmel focuses on a healthy work/life balance for her staff and artists. She ensures they feel appreciated and valued in what they do, noting the importance of taking mental health breaks when needed.
“We’re going to be thoughtful about how we’re planning tours and make sure it’s a positive experience for the artists, the fans and the management company,” she says. “with everything happening in the world, treating people better is probably the one thing anybody can do every day that doesn’t cost anything.”