Amanda Scheer Demme is an American photographer and creative director.
Previously a music supervisor, label owner, and artist manager, she is
best known as a nightlife producer. Demme was described by The Los
Angeles Times as an "expert at 'building a room,' choosing a precise
mix of guests, sculpting space with light and shadow, and cultivating
a mood something akin to performance art." She conceptualized and shot
the award-winning #theemptychair image for New York Magazine's 2015
cover story "Bill Cosby: The Women."
Demme served as the music supervisor for more than 40 films and
television shows, including Mean Girls, Garden State, Judgment Night
and Blow. Her first solo show as a photographer took place in Venice,
California in May 2013.
1 Early life and education
2.1 New York
2.2 Los Angeles
2.2.1 Buzztone, Immortal, Ventrue, Cheeba Sounds
2.2.2 Music Supervisor
2.2.3 Supermarket Media
2.2.4 Nightclubs: The Tropicana Bar and Teddy's
3 Personal life
5 External links
Early life and education
Demme was born in Washington, DC, and grew up in Potomac, Maryland.
She began playing tennis at 8, and played competitively into college
as a member of Boston University's tennis team. She graduated from BU
in 1985 with a degree in food and hotel administration.
At 21, Demme moved to New York City, where she worked as a doorgirl at
The World. In the late 1980s, after working for the New Music Seminar,
Sleeping Bag Records, and in the hip-hop department at Arista Records,
Demme began promoting underground hip hop shows at Carwash, a club she
created at an abandoned
Lower East Side
Lower East Side high school. At Carwash, she
held DJ and MC contests and booked then-new artists and rap acts,
including KRS-One, Leaders of the New School, Afrika Bambaataa,
Buzztone, Immortal, Ventrue, Cheeba Sounds
Demme moved to Los Angeles in 1993 after meeting Happy Walters, with
whom she founded Buzztone Management and later Immortal Records. In
addition to the overall management of the company, she served as
Immortal's creative director and in an a&r capacity. Through
Buzztone, she and Walters managed artists including Cypress Hill,
House of Pain, and Pop's Cool Love, who were notably featured on the
first-ever MTV Unplugged episode of Yo! MTV Raps.
After releasing several well-received albums, including debuts by Korn
and Incubus, Demme and Walters parted ways. Demme subsequently created
Ventrue Records in association with Rick Rubin's American Recordings,
and gained attention via the guerilla marketing campaigns she
developed for Ventrue artists including
Lordz of Brooklyn and
Psychotica. She was also associated with Cheeba Sounds, an
imprint of Virgin Records, who released records by
Nikka Costa and
D'Angelo, among others.
Demme's first project as a music supervisor was for the 1993 film
Judgment Night. The subject of significant critical acclaim, the
soundtrack paired hip-hop artists with rock and metal
bands. She went on to serve as the music supervisor for the
films Garden State, Mean Girls, Blow, Erin Brockovich and Slackers,
among others, as well as the television series Felicity and the series
Freaks and Geeks.
In 2002, Demme founded Supermarket Media, an
events-film-music-marketing collective with Brent Bolthouse, Jenifer
Rosero, and Dominique Trenier. Among other projects, Demme designed
and promoted events for organizations including
Rock the Vote and Step
Up as well as for corporate clients such as Mercedes-Benz, DKNY, Vogue
Nightclubs: The Tropicana Bar and Teddy's
In 2004, Demme returned to her role as a nightclub impresaria, turning
Monday nights into Los Angeles' "new 'it' night" at the Sunset Tower
Hotel, an Art Deco landmark on Sunset Boulevard. In 2005,
after working on an extensive renovation and rebranding campaign, she
opened two nightclubs at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, The Tropicana
Bar and Teddy's.
The Tropicana Bar, which Demme co-owned and operated, opened in June,
and was an immediate success. In a matter of weeks, "celebrities
packed the poolside Tropicana Bar, and anybody else who made it past
Demme’s velvet rope could consider it a career achievement in
itself." In October she opened Teddy's, which was equally
successful, and with celebrities present every night, it became a
"paparazzi heaven." Credited for transforming the Roosevelt into the
"hottest joint in town," Demme personally oversaw the door, and the
exclusivity of Teddy's was even more extreme than it was at the
Tropicana Bar, with the
LA Weekly noting that she was both "celebrated
and vilified for her in-crowd-only gatherings." However,
Demme's Roosevelt clubs were short-lived; with frequent complaints of
underage drinking and noise, as well as a dismissed discrimination
suit filed against the Roosevelt by football player Terrell Davis, her
contract with the hotel was terminated in 2006.
Demme, who had become progressively more interested in physical
design, next launched H. Wood, in the former location of the Stork, a
club adjacent to the
Kodak Theater in Hollywood. Designing the
exterior of the club with bricks that were salvaged from a
decommissioned naval base and windows from Andy Warhol’s Factory,
Demme said she viewed the project as an art installation. "It’s more
of an exterior palette where people can create their own experience.
It’s a condensed version of those pockets of street culture that you
find in incredible urban settings," she stated in a 2008 interview
with Women's Wear Daily. Although it was referred to by the media
as Demme's comeback, her involvement with the club was limited, and in
2010, she began to focus on photography.
The first exhibit of Demme's photography took place at the Obsolete
Gallery in Venice, California in May 2013. Composed of oversized
portraits, her work was described by the LA Times as "emotional and
dark, even cinematic." In addition to her fine art photography, Demme
has shot editorially for Interview, New York Magazine, Flaunt and
Demme conceptualized and shot the July 2015 cover story "Cosby: The
Women." Composed of 35 black and white portraits of women who spoke
publicly about being sexually assaulted by Bill Cosby, and an empty
chair which represented unreported assaults, the image galvanized
discussions about sexual assault on social media via the hashtag
#theemptychair. The cover was described as "brilliantly conceived and
executed" in Time, who included it on their list of the top magazine
covers of 2015. Salon wrote: "In Amanda Demme’s composite
photographs of (the women) seated in stark wooden chairs against a
white background, the magnitude of Cosby’s many crimes is ripped
from a half-forgotten past into an unforgiving present."
Demme was married to Ted Demme, with whom she had two children, Jaxon
and Dexter. They were married from 1993 until his death in 2002.
^ a b Piccalo, Gina (4 May 2013). "
Amanda Demme is glad to no longer
be the life of the party". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 23 February
^ a b Waxman, Sharon (16 April 2006). "Rough Dawn for a Nighttime
Queen". New York Times. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
^ a b McDermott, Maeve (July 27, 2015). "On Cosby cover, one powerful
empty chair". USA Today. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
^ a b Pollack, Cara (December 8, 2015). "TIME Picks the Top Magazine
Covers of 2015". Time. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
^ Visual Arts News Desk (May 4, 2013). "LA's Obsolete Opens Amanda
Demme Photography Exhibition Toda". broadwayworld.com. BWW Artworld.
Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ a b Weiss, Jeff (June 2013). "Studio Session". The Radar/Digital
Modern Luxury. Retrieved 3 March 2015.
^ a b c "Amanda Scheer-Demme". imdb.com. IMDb. Retrieved 3 March
^ Goodwin, Betty (11 September 2005). "HOLLYWOOD HIGH / AMANDA DEMME
TURNS A HOTEL BAR INTO A PRIVATE PARTY". San Francisco Chronicle.
Retrieved 23 February 2015.
^ Faraone, Chris. "In the Early Days of Rap Music, One COM Student
Fanned a Cultural Spark that Caught Fire Campus-wide". bu.edu. Boston
University. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
^ a b Ryder, Caroline (12 April 2006). "She Loves the Nightlife". LA
Weekly. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
^ a b c d e Piccalo, Gina (January 12, 2004). "In the Wink of an Eye".
Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 23 February 2015.
^ "A New Label Tentatively Called Immortal". The Hollywood Reporter.
May 1991. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Moss, Corey (June 25, 1996). "Unusual can find itself mainstage".
Iowa State Daily. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Amoroso, A.D. (8 August 1996). "Bound, Gagged and Powdered".
Philadelphia City Paper. Archived from the original on 1 October 2015.
Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Borzillo, Carrie (1 July 1995). "Popular Uprisings". Billboard.
Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ a b Baltin, Steve (23 June 2005). "Invitations are Being Sent". Los
Angeles Times. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ "MTV Unplugged Season 2". tv.com. TV.com. Retrieved 28 February
^ Cuda, Heidi Sigmund (20 March 2003). "Buzz Clubs". Los Angeles
Times. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Corcoran, Monica (25 July 2004). "Never on Saturday". New York
Times. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Licaro, Lina (3 May 2013). "Lina's Party Pick of the Week". LA
Weekly. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Corcoran, Monica (April 17, 2005). "Amanda Scheer Demme: Queen of
the Hollywood Night". New York Times. Retrieved 23 February
^ Apoldaca, Rose (27 June 2005). "Starry Nights". Women's Wear Daily.
Retrieved 25 February 2015.
^ Medina, Marcy (28 August 2008). "
Amanda Demme on Her Latest
Venture". Women's Wear Daily. Retrieved 24 February 2015.
^ Shoeneman, Deborah (February 21, 2009). "Yes, Hollywood, She's Back,
Maybe". New York Times. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Painter, Alysia Gray (July 17, 2009). "Scheer-Demme's Hollywood
Return". nbc.com. NBC. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
^ Kaufman, Scott Eric. "Power in numbers: 35 of Bill Cosby's victims
speak to New York magazine" (July 27, 2015). Salon. Retrieved 29 July
^ MTV News Staff (14 January 2002). "Ted Demme, Director and 'Yo! MTV
Raps' Co-Founder, Dies". mtv.com. MTV. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
ISNI: 0000 00