Simon Fuller & Pearson Announce ‘Academy of Pop’

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LOS ANGELES, 15 October 2021

The Academy of Pop will merge entertainment and learning in a new approach to performing arts education

Simon Fuller, one of entertainment’s most successful and iconic figures, and Pearson, the world’s leading learning company, announced today that they are partnering to create the Academy of Popular Performing Arts (Academy of Pop), a new entertainment driven performing arts learning platform.

The Academy of Pop will offer innovative coaching from world-renowned instructors and provide performers of all levels with the opportunity to watch, participate and progress within a passionately engaged global community.

The first Academy of Pop will launch in Hollywood in early 2022, with small classes of students participating in daily acting, dance, music, and musical theatre lessons that can be followed in real time online. A proprietary Academy of Pop online platform is in development and further physical locations around the world are scheduled to open over the next 24 months.

“The performing arts have never been so important to the world, with a whole generation searching for new ways to express themselves and find joy,” said Simon Fuller. “The Academy Of Pop will provide an inclusive, immersive, safe platform for performers to develop their skills and find validation with our extraordinary teachers. I am delighted to partner with Pearson to merge the worlds of entertainment and education, creating an innovative, exciting destination for everyone everywhere to enjoy the performing arts.”

The mental and social benefits of the performing arts have never been more relevant. As many schools struggle to fund arts education, aspiring performers need a new way to build their skills and unlock their passions. The Academy of Pop combines Pearson’s global expertise in education with Fuller’s proven track record of identifying and enabling world-class talent. It is designed to open greater access to performing arts education and become a unique and inclusive platform that will help young people globally develop their talent.

“With the performing arts at the centre of contemporary culture, millions of people are developing their talent by performing in person and online, often with no formal training or education,” said Andy Bird, CEO Pearson.

“There is a real opportunity for innovation in this part of the education space. We’re excited to partner with an entertainment visionary like Simon Fuller to build a learning experience that will captivate and engage a global market of aspiring young performers.”

Pearson is making an investment in the Academy of Pop through its Pearson Ventures fund. Pearson Ventures invests in companies building new market opportunities using innovative business models, future technologies, and new educational experiences.


About Simon Fuller’s XIX Entertainment

XIX Entertainment has a track record in hit format innovation, star talent platforms, and high-value brand partnerships. The business is owned by EMMY award-winning entrepreneur Simon Fuller, whose unique track record includes inspiring iconic music talent such as Spice Girls, ABBA, Annie Lennox, and Amy Winehouse, building the brand businesses of David Beckham & Victoria Beckham, partnering with Sir Michael Caine and Jennifer Lopez on Film and TV projects, launching the first global pop group Now United, and creating landmark TV formats including American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, and Serengeti.


About Pearson 

Learning is the most powerful force for change in the world. More than 20,000 Pearson employees deliver our products and services in nearly 200 countries, all working towards a common purpose – to help everyone achieve their potential through learning. We do that by providing high quality, digital content and learning experiences, as well as assessments and qualifications that help people build their skills and grow with the world around them. We are the world’s leading learning company. 

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