We are so proud of what our Loeb alumni have accomplished since they left the firm, and we hope that Loeb Reconnected will help you get to know your fellow alumni on a deeper level.
This Q&A features Sarah Schacter, who was a member of Loeb’s Litigation department from November 2014 until October 2022.
Catch us up! Where have you been since Loeb?
I left Loeb to join Sony Music Entertainment, a global music entertainment company and one of the largest recorded music companies. It was an exciting career move for me. I’m part of the litigation team at Sony Music, and in many ways my role is similar to my role at Loeb, where I was part of the Litigation department in New York. Now that I’m on Sony Music’s internal team, however, I represent one client’s interests rather than serving as external counsel to multiple clients. Here at Sony Music, I’m involved in every aspect of the cases that I manage, working closely with outside counsel. I also handle pre-litigation disputes, both affirmative and defensive, and provide advice and counsel to our labels and global affiliates on a wide range of issues.
Is there anything you learned at Loeb that you’ve taken with you to your current role or any of the other roles you’ve had?
I was involved in several music industry-related litigations at Loeb. Those experiences at the firm helped me develop my understanding of the music business and the many issues that arise for music companies, including copyright enforcement, contractual, and content review issues (such as privacy and Lanham Act issues). At Sony Music, I am now focused on the recorded music industry and its nuances more specifically, but my experiences at Loeb and the knowledge and general understanding of the industry that I gained from those experiences have been invaluable in my new role.
Can you share a specific Loeb memory that you are fond of?
It’s truly hard to pick just one memory after eight years at the firm.
Looking back, I often reflect on the “To Kill a Mockingbird” litigation between the estate of Harper Lee and Rudinplay Inc. (Scott Rudin’s production company) over the Broadway adaptation of Lee’s classic novel, which was written by playwright Aaron Sorkin. It was a fascinating—and very fun—case to work on, as it involved complex civil procedure questions as well as novel contractual issues. It was also a high-stakes case, as the outcome ultimately determined whether the show would premiere and run on Broadway. I am very proud of the work I did on this case, as the Loeb team was able to ensure that the show debuted and remained on stage.
Working on this case also meant that my law career intersected with my former career in the New York theater world. In fact, at one point during the case, we proposed to stage a version of the script as part of a potential trial (before the case ultimately settled). I remember joking at the time that I was uniquely positioned to serve as both lawyer and theatrical stage manager of that fictional trial within an actual trial. Working with Loeb partner Jonathan Zavin on that case and others was an incredible experience for me. Similarly, partner Barry Slotnick has been a great mentor to me and has had a major influence on my career. Jonathan and Barry have worked on many of the formative and landmark copyright cases in music, film, and theater that I studied in law school, and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to work with such exceptional lawyers and wonderful people.
While at Loeb, I had the opportunity to gain significant trial experience, which has been essential to my work overseeing litigation at Sony Music. One music copyright case reached a jury verdict on March 12, 2020, just as the world went into lockdown, an experience I will never forget. I have great memories working with the team on that case, which included Loeb partners Barry Slotnick, Chris Carbone and Tal Dickstein. I was also able to work on cases outside of the copyright and entertainment world at Loeb, collaborating with excellent lawyers on matters touching a wide variety of industries.
What did you like most about working at Loeb?
I made many close friends and learned from great mentors who will continue to be a part of my career and life post-Loeb. There were several women at the firm, across departments and even different Loeb offices, who became moms at the same time as I did. Now our kids are around the same age, and we continue to talk and compare notes on the challenges of being a parent of young kids and being a lawyer. This has been and continues to be a critical source of support for me.
At Loeb, everyone’s ideas and perspectives are respected and valued. I joined the firm as a mid-level associate and always felt heard and like I was part of a collaborative team environment. The senior lawyers I worked with welcomed all thoughts and opinions, including those of junior lawyers and paralegals. It was also a community of lawyers with similar interest in the complexities and quirks of case law and legal doctrine, including those that would be mundane to nonlawyers (and even to many lawyers). Loeb is also a place that encourages its associates to give back to the community. For example, I was so proud to be on a pro bono team that secured a victory in an asylum case on behalf of a woman who fled to the United States to escape her ex-partner in Peru who had subjected her to decades of abuse. I also collaborated with Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts on pro bono representations, which was extremely rewarding as well as a great learning experience.
I also appreciated receiving valuable guidance from the firm’s senior lawyers—they would talk me through issues and support me in preparing to question witnesses at trial and take depositions. In particular, partner Tal Dickstein volunteered so much of his time while I prepped for my first deposition, answering questions and discussing potential issues and outcomes.
What does being a part of Loeb Reconnected, Loeb’s alumni community, mean to you?
Loeb Reconnected has provided me with the opportunity to maintain long-term relationships with my mentors at the firm and stay in touch with other Loeb lawyers and alumni. The platform has also helped me retain friendships I made during my time at the firm. While I’m very happy in my current role at Sony Music, leaving Loeb was bittersweet. Through Loeb Reconnected, I’m able to keep in touch with my fantastic former colleagues, ensuring the connections we made keep going strong.