Sony Masterworks retooled

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Gilbert Hetherwick, president of Sony BMG Masterworks, the classical division of Sony BMG Music Entertainment, has exited the company along with three divisional vps.

Masterworks will now be jointly run by senior vp marketing Alex Miller and senior vp A&R David Lai.

"In order to make Sony BMG Masterworks more responsive and more effective in adapting to the new realities of the classical music market, the label was recently made part of Sony BMG Music Entertainment's Commercial Music Group," Masterworks said in a statement. "As part of the group, Masterworks will have access to additional resources in the areas of digital, sales, promotion and A&R."

The Commercial Music Group also includes Legacy Recordings, the Strategic Marketing Group and the Custom Marketing Group.

The reorganization followed Tower Records' liquidation by weeks. Tower, which operated sizable classical departments, was the largest specialized retailer in the genre, which accounts for a sliver of the total music market.

Hetherwick was installed as head of Sony BMG's classical division in January 2005, after serving as vp/general manager of BMG Classics (HR 1/13/05).

Other departing Masterworks executives include Michelle Errante, vp classical marketing and catalog development; Deborah Surdi, vp classical A&R; and Paul Cremo, vp soundtracks and Broadway.

Masterworks artists include cellist Yo-Yo Ma, violinist Joshua Bell and composer John Williams.
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