KUT to manage Cactus Cafe music venue

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Austin’s KUT will begin booking acts for the Cactus Cafe, a music venue and bar in the University of Texas’s student union, in August. The partnership, announced after months of discussions about how to keep the Cafe open, puts KUT in charge of scheduling performances 200 nights per year and devising a business plan that will make the money-losing venue self-sustaining. That will include some mix of live broadcasts from the club, sponsorship sales, improved box office operations and sales of downloadable podcasts; managers of the Texas Union will oversee bar operations separately. “We believe the Cactus Cafe plays an essential role in the Austin music experience and are committed to preserving and sharing that experience with the UT campus and beyond,” said Stewart Vanderwilt, KUT director. The Horn, UT’s student newspaper, questioned whether this new arrangement has the broad support among student leaders that campus officials claim for it. One unanswered query from those who have campaigned to save the cafe (here and here) is whether KUT will hire longtime Cactus manager Griff Luneberg to run the cafe.