Featured Alumni Profiles

Adriana Pereira

MA '02, Music Business

"I've always loved music," says Adriana Pereira. "I began piano lessons when I was three and when I was a young woman I attended a classical music conservatory." Pereira came to NYU as a Fulbright scholar from Venezuela and received her MA in Music Business in 2002. Her thesis, "The U.S. Market for Latin Alternative Music," was recently awarded a Best Research in Cultural Markets award from Sociedad General de Autores y Editores (SGAE), the largest performing rights organization in Spain. "As an adult," Pereira says, "I no longer perform. I prefer to work behind the scenes, helping artists get their music into the world." She currently lives in Madrid and is assisting the International Exploitation Manager at Warner Music Spain.

Tell me about your job at Warner Music.

Warner is one of the major record labels in the world, and my department – International Exploitation – oversees the album releases of Spanish artists launched outside of Spain. This means we supervise everything that goes into getting albums manufactured, marketed and promoted in each territory. My job puts me in touch with affiliates in many countries, but mostly Latin America and the US, which are the main markets. As there are only two of us in this department, I really get to do a lot! I'm very happy here. I like an international environment. I also like that I can apply what I learned at NYU. The international music business involves complicated contracts and royalties, and my studies at NYU, especially those that focused on entertainment law, really prepared me in these areas.

What attracted you to NYU for your master's degree?

I knew attending NYU would not only give me a first-rate education, it would also be an invaluable cultural experience. It would bring me from Caracas to the center of the music industry, and of course to New York, which is an amazing city. I applied for a Fulbright scholarship, expressed in my application the desire to attend NYU, and I received the award. My experience at NYU was awesome. My classmates came from all over the world and had so many different interests. Some were entrepreneurs, others were jazz musicians, some were deejays. The teachers and guest speakers were great too. Interacting with them gave me the opportunity to talk to and question people working and thriving in the music industry.

What do you see yourself doing in the future?

When I was in New York I volunteered for two years at the Latin Alternative Music Conference, which is held every year in the city, and focuses on marketing Latin rock, hip-hop and electronic music to young people. That would be the model for a company I'd like to start. I would promote music from Latin America and bring it to Europe and the States. I like the idea of international cultural exchange. And creating that kind of organization would enable me to continue to grow in the world of international music, which has always been so important to me.