John Probyn, Live Nation CEO, will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award at this year’s UK Festival Awards, at The Roundhouse on Monday 3rd December.
The honour, which comes from the awards’ board, crowns a momentous year that has seen Probyn direct the largest series of live music events ever staged by a single company in the UK in one summer, in the face of some heavy resistance from the weather.
His notable 2012 triumphs included saving the biggest and best Download Festival yet from a potential wash-out and then walking 144 miles from Donington to Hyde Park in aid of Cancer Research. There that he played host to more 1m live music fans, for Barclaycard Wireless, Hard Rock Calling and BT London Live. The weather returned with a vengeance and Probyn responded with 8m litres of woodchip, and the shows went on.
All this is but the pinnacle of a career that began in commercial radio events and has seen Probyn succeed through his unique ability to balance the needs of the fan with the bottom line. As a result, he’s arguably the most respected, recognised and well-liked production executive in the industry, and Chief Operating Officer of the world’s largest live entertainment producer.
“John’s contributions to event production have raised the bar in safety, comfort and enjoyment for millions of live music fans across the festival spectrum, worldwide, extending far beyond his own events. For this reason alone this award is overdue,” Steve Jenner, Festival Awards co-founder, said.
“However, I feel passionately that credit also very much due for John’s commitment to engaging directly with his audiences through digital channels as well as regular fan-forum meet-up events. This has been key to the stand-out success of events like Download Festival and has driven forward the evolution of the wider marketplace in no small strides”.