More redundancies at Emap music titles

Mixmag and Q: among the titles losing staff

Emap’s music titles have been hit by several highprofile departures, including Mixmag editor Viv Craske, who was told his job would be axed ahead of a redesign of the flagship dance music title.

The job losses came within a week of the closures of J-17 and The Face, involving 35 redundancies.

Also affected by the job cuts are Paul Trynka, former Mojo editor and currently editorial director of Q and Mojo; Madeline Ballantyne, publishing director of one-shots; and Paul Kurzeja, group art director, who left a top job on Wallpaper to join Emap last year. Kurzeja has agreed to stay at the company on a project basis to oversee the redesign of Mixmag.

Craske’s redundancy means Mixmag has no editor. The day-to-day running of the title will now come under the control of editorial director Pauline Haldane.

Insiders were “stunned” by the departure of Craske, and said he could not understand why his job had been singled out. It is understood Emap wanted to keep Haldane because of her experience in teen magazines, as well as music.

Former Q editor Danny Eccleston, who moved to special projects last year, has been offered a new position, which has yet to be confirmed.

Dave Henderson, managing director of rock, has been made creative director of rock with closer involvement with Q, Kerrang! and Mojo and responsibility for one-shots, covermounts, awards and Q’s tie-in with the Glastonbury Festival.

Q is also looking at ways to turn around its decline. Jonathan Sellers, creative director on Zoo, has been “airlifted” in to oversee a radical redesign.

Sources say there are plans to go “back to basics” with more emphasis on reviews and traditional artists rather than pop acts such as Britney Spears.

The cost-cutting was instigated by the new managing director of Emap Performance, Marcus Rich, who is rumoured to have put a freeze on launches until sales improve on Q, Mixmag, Kerrang! and Smash Hits!.

Trynka, Eccleston and Kurzeja were working on a launch, dubbed a “national Time Out”. An Emap spokeswoman stressed that ideas were still ongoing, adding: “This stage of the restructure is finished for now.”

Although some staff were unhappy with the initial redundancy offers, most are thought to have negotiated decent exit deals that include “gagging orders”.

By Ruth Addicott

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