“They make Hal Gabas three times a century. I have yet to meet the other two. He was an extrodinary partner and friend.”
—-Norman Lear


Norman Lear Partner was 63 Years Old
Concord Music Group Chairman and Co-owner, Village Roadshow Pictures co-chairman and ACT III Communications CEO, Hal Gaba, died at his home in L.A. on Monday after a battle with cancer. He was 63 years old.

Said his longtime partner Norman Lear: “They make Hal Gabas three times a century. I have yet to meet the other two. He was an extrodinary partner and friend.”

The Oakland, CA, UC Berkeley and UCLA finance grad began his career as a research analyst with William O’Neil and Company in 1967. In 1974, he joined legendary producers Lear, Bud Yorkin and Jerry Perenchio at Tandem Productions, where the men became life-long friends, partners and allies.

In 1990, Gaba, in partnership with Lear, became president and chief executive officer of ACT III Communications, a multi-media holding company with interests in broadcasting, exhibition theatre, publishing, motion pictures and music. His life-long dream of owning a record company became reality in 1999 when he and Lear became co-owners of the Concord Music Group, which established a relationship with Starbucks in 2003, which led to the release of Genius Loves Company, Ray Charles’ last recording. In 2006, the Concord Music Group partnered with Starbucks to form Hear Music, releasing records from superstars Paul McCartney, James Taylor, John Mellencamp and Joni Mitchell.

In 2008, Gaba merged the Concord Music Group with Australia’s renowned Village Roadshow Pictures to form Village Roadshow Entertainment Group. Village Roadshow movies have included the animated feature Happy Feet, Oceans 13, I Am Legend, the Get Smart remake and Clint Eastwood’s Gran Torino, to name just a few.

Hal served on the board of directors for World Trade Bank, Union Rescue Mission in Los Angeles, Univision Communications Corporation, Herbalife, The Henry Mancini Institute and The Curtis School, and has served on the executive committee for the Weizmann Institute of Science.

He is survived by Carole, his wife of 23 years; daughters, Lauren and Elizabeth; mother, Thelma Gaba; sister, Joelle Lawson; and brother, Jeff Gaba.

Statement from Glen Barros, Concord Music Group president and CEO:

Concord Music Group President/CEO Glen Barros said: “The phrase ‘to know him is to love him’ has been said about many, but I can’t think of anyone for which these words were more fitting. He was great at just about everything he tried, and he inspired those around him to be great too. Quite simply, Hal was one helluva guy and he will be terribly missed.”

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Hal Gaba's memory may be made payable to “U.C. Regents” and mailed as follows:

Matthew B. Rettig, M.D.
For use by the Prostate Cancer Research Program
Department of Urology
The David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
Box 951738
Los Angeles, CA 90025-1738

A celebration of Hal's life will be held on Monday, March 16 at 1:30 p.m. in the Ahmanson Ballroom, Skirball Cultural Center, 2701 N. Sepulveda Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90049