UPDATE: WME announced Dec. 7 Michael Berkowitz is joining the agency as a partner to oversee its comedy touring team.

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Photo: Photo Courtesy of WME

Berkowitz

The news comes after APA announced Berkowitz's departure yesterday, along with the promotion of Jackie Knobbe and Max Burgos to co-heads of its own comedy department.

Pollstar previously interviewed Berkowitz for an executive profile. He is one of the major comedy agents in the business and helped transition acts like Kevin Hart and Amy Schumer to arenas and to make comedy into an increasingly popular art form being distributed through many kinds of media.

"Stand-up is the purest way that artists can get their point of view out there to the world," he said in the interview. "It’s natural that being a stand-up comic can turn into all these different platforms, whether it’s being an author, actor, director, producer or even a business mogul."

Berkowitz is bringing his impressive client roster, which includes Aziz Ansari, Kevin Hart, Amy Schumer, John Mulaney, Hannibal Buress, Craig Ferguson, Mike Birbiglia, Bill Burr, and Anthony Jeselnik.

Comedy indeed is carving out a space on on Pollstar's charts. There were five comedians on our 2017 3Q Worldwide Top 100 Tours chart: Jeff Dunham (69), Micky Flanagan (71), Jerry Seinfeld (72), Chris Rock (73) and Jack Whitehall (95). There will likely be a few comedians on the Year End Top 100 Tours chart, and the frontrunners for the top spot are likely Seinfeld or Dave Chappelle. Dave recently grossed a reported $11,496,203 at his 16-night NYC residency at Radio City Music Hall.

ORIGINAL STORY: Michael Berkowitz is departing as APA’s head of comedy at the end of the year, and Jackie Knobbe and Max Burgos will be the new co-heads of the department, agency CEO and President Jim Gosnell announced Dec. 6.

“Jackie and Max are two of the best agents in the business,” Gosnell said in a statement, “Their creativity, tenacity and ‘unlimited’ approach to the careers of our clients will be instrumental as we continue to expand our footprint in the ever-evolving comedy arena.”

APA currently counts Tiffany Haddish, Lewis Black, Leslie Jones, Eddie Izzard and more among its clients.

Knobbe has served as senior VP of comedy since 2009 and became a partner in 2015. Burgos joined APA’s talent department in 2012.