Mannes

Faculty A-Z

  • David Williams

    Part-Time Faculty

    Profile:

    Before deciding upon law school, David Williams worked simultaneously as an underwriter in Manhattan's financial district and as an assistant to an artist manager. After law school, he assumed various roles of increasing responsibility specializing in the drafting and interpretation of professional liability contracts.

    In 2002 he launched a part-time consultancy practice, now known as Enterprising Artist Consulting (www.EnterprisingArtistConsulting.com), helping musicians, actors, and other creative people with contract-related matters. Soon, he was invited to speak on topics relating to performers' contracts at the Seagle Music Colony, Tanglewood, the American Singers Opera Project, Crane School of Music, the Manhattan School of Music, the New England Conservatory, the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Yale, among others.

    A fierce advocate for artists' rights, he left the corporate setting in 2015 to dedicate himself to this work full time focusing on completed his first book, The Enterprising Musician's Guide to Performer Contracts (Rowman & Littlefield, 2017). Geared to emerging artists without regard to genre, the book explains music industry contracts in plain language.

    David Williams holds a JD from New York Law School, and degrees in vocal performance from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (DMA), and the New England Conservatory of Music (MM), as well as a BM in Musical Studies from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam.  Though he does not practice law at present, he holds a New York law license.

    Dr. Williams currently teaches graduates classes in Entrepreneurial Musicianship at the Mannes School of Music, The New School, in Manhattan. He's also taught Music Law at the Crane Institute for Music Business and Entrepreneurship at SUNY Potsdam. 

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