Agency Shakeup: WME Vet Samantha Kirby Yoh Joins UTA Music

Courtesy of UTA


The agency world has been completely disrupted by COVID-19, but today's announcement that powerhouse agent Samantha Kirby Yoh is leaving WME to join David Zedeck as the co-head of UTA Music is the biggest game-changer to date in the representation space.

The U.K. native joined the pre-Endeavor merger William Morris Agency in 2004 after five years as an agent at Evolution Talent. In 2012 she was appointed to partner and most recently headed WME's East Coast Music division with a powerhouse roster that included Bjork, Rosalia, LCD Soundsystem, Florence & the Machine, FKA twigs, Grimes, Alicia Keys, James Blake, MIA, Moses Sumney, Channel Tres, Banks, St Vincent, Massive Attack and The Chemical Brothers.

"Sam and David see eye-to-eye on how to build a great music business and will be strong partners in leading UTA Music," said UTA CEO Jeremy Zimmer. "We have long admired Sam’s success working with unique and powerful artists, and we’re thrilled she has chosen to join us. Under their leadership, UTA Music will continue to bring innovative ideas, unparalleled service and collaboration into the lives of artists."

Natalia Nastaskin will continue in her role as general manager  at UTA, working closely with both Zedeck and Kirby Yoh.

“I am excited to join UTA as they continue to build out their music department to meet, protect and amplify the creativity of the artists they represent," said Kirby Yoh. "UTA is at the vanguard of investing and sourcing incredibly innovative opportunities for their artists. Additionally, I’ve watched with great respect as UTA moves clearly with their intentions to better our music community, becoming leaders in diversity, equity and inclusion. I look forward to partnering with David Zedeck, a friend for more than 20 years and one of the most talented agents and leaders in music. I’m thrilled to get to work."

The U.K. native has long been a well known and respected force for change in the agency world, advocating for greater diversity and inclusion with projects like "She Is The Music" which focuses on increasing the number of women working in the global music industry. Kirby Yoh also sits on the advisory board of the influential Annenberg Inclusion Initiative and  is co-founder of "Noise for Now," connecting performers to organizations fighting for reproductive rights.

"There are few agents in music more inventive, collaborative or dynamic than Sam and I’m excited she’s agreed to join UTA," said Zedeck. "We've been colleagues and friends for over two decades and there’s no one I'd rather share the responsibility of running our music business with. She's someone I admire and respect tremendously. She’ll bring a unique perspective and outstanding taste to the role, and I look forward to a partnership focused on continuing to build UTA Music into the industry leader."

Courtesy Photo
Samantha Kirby