Why We Love: Melanie Blake, Author, playwright and founder of Urban Associates talent agency

Where to start with Melanie and why we love her? She’s the definition of female boss. She’s the founder of one of the UK’s leading talent agency Urban Associates, Journalist and author and playwright.

Melanie’s story really starts in the ’80s, in Manchester, when she was still at school, belittled by her English teacher for constantly writing strong female characters.

At 15, she did work experience at a local record shop, it was something her careers teacher wasn’t at all encouraging about, telling her that it was an ” ‘embarrassment and a clear example that she wouldn’t go far in life or her career’. 

She set out to prove them wrong. 6 years later, at the age of 21, Melanie was working on one of the most iconic shows the BBC has ever aired, Top of the Pops.

Fast forward another 6 years, Melanie had gained the reputation as one of the leading music and entertainment managers, with her own agency, managing some of the UK’s most talented and sort after stars, including singer Claire Richards.

Claire met Melanie in 1999 at Top of the Pops, Claire was performing with her Steps bandmates, there was an instant connection and she knew Melanie would make an amazing manager. Claire was proven correct, They worked together for 10 years, and are still firm friends.

She went on to write a regular column with the Daily Mirror. Prior to this, she was the first female TV Columnist for the Sunday People. She ghost wrote on several best selling novels and cites a career milestone for her was her”  first commission for Hello! Magazine was a big milestone for me as I had grown up reading it at my grandparents’ house.

In 2004 she officially launched Urban Associates, one of the leading celebrity management companies in the UK.

After working in New York and seeing how they did everything under one roof, management, PR etc, she brought the concept to the UK.

Fifteen years on the agency is still going strong with one of the strongest client rosters, to which individuals in the public eye are attracted to due to the family feel the agency cultivates. You are family, no matter if you stay with the agency a month or ten years. We think it sounds a pretty lovely place to have working for you or to work for. The likes of Corrie’s Beverley Callard and Jennie McAlpine and Mis-Teeq’s Sabrina Washington agree as they are just some of the many talented individuals represented by the agency.

Now Melanie is set to launch her debut novel The Thunder Girls, a novel that has been twenty-five years in the making. Another reason we love Melanie if her inspiring career wasn’t enough, it’s taken her over twenty years to write and get her novel published. The determination, ironclad resolve and courage never to give up on a dream is something we here at Fuzzable we’d all love to have and achieve in the future.

Not only has she written The Thunder Girls and is now working on her second novel, but she is bringing The Thunder Girls, home to Manchester with the help of Blake and Squire the media company she founded with longtime friend and co-worker Angela Squire.

The play featuring an all-star cast including Coleen Nolan, Beverley Callard and Mina Anwar will have its world premiere at The Lowry Theatre in Salford Quays. Showing the awe-inspiring power Melanie wields, the theatre adaption of The Thunder Girls has sold out its entire run, and that’s before the book has even been released.

Melanie’s career from her work as a talent/ artist manager to her journalistic prowess and her creativity and love of writing as an author is something here at Fuzzable we find to very inspiring and encouraging for young people, as Melanie is living proof that if you work hard, believe in yourself and keep pursuing you dreams, they can come true!

Melanie’s debut novel The Thunder Girls is out on July 11th. You can pre-order now on Amazon!

What are your dreams? What would you love to achieve in your career? Let us know at @Fuzzable!

Written by Kelly McFarland

Likes to post in monochrome on Instagram.
Twitter: @kellymcf6
Instagram: @kellymcf6
Contact: kellymcfarland89@gmail.com

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