Training directory: Who’s who in live/installed sound education16 October 2014
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Britannia Row Productions
London-based Britannia Row, one of the world’s leading audio rental companies, has been supplying high-end audio equipment to live engineers since 1975. In April last year, it began for the first time to offer training courses in live sound practice and theory to people outside the company.
“Britannia Row’s Live Sound Technology Course provides a shortcut entry path into the live sound industry,” says the company. “Unlike other audio, sound or music technology courses, it focuses on all of the skills needed for professional live work. You will learn directly from sound engineers and audio technicians who are working at the highest levels in the industry.”
(In the print edition of the October 2014 PSNEurope, this article originally stated that: “[I]n July [Britannia Row] partnered with Alchemea College for Alchemea’s Live Sound Course. This statement was erroneous: it is Britannia Row’s own live sound course – Alchemea College’s is no longer running.)
“In the Harman Professional tour division, we have expanded our team and strengthened our commitment to training and support to help ensure that customers in the live sound and rental communities obtain optimal return from their investment in our platform,” Paul Bauman, associate director, tour sound, at JBL Professional, tells PSNEurope, outlining the company’s training philosophy.
In addition to its regular VTX training courses at its headquarters in Northridge, California, US, the company now offers remote training at clients’ locations, and is “implementing policies to provide remote show support as well”.
“Many of the training concepts and sound design techniques that have been developed over the past 16 years have been integrated into [the] JBL HiQnet Performance Manager software,” adds Bauman. “The Performance Manager workflow has been specifically designed to steer people towards good working practices in order to get the best results, so this is complementary to our education initiatives.”
Meyer Sound has been offering audio training since Bob McCarthy, now the company’s director of system optimisation, first began leading SIM Audio Analyzer seminars in 1984. (Pictured is Bob McCarthy leading a SIM 3 training class in Banff, Alberta, Canada.)
“We continue to see education and training as key to Meyer Sound’s philosophy,” says education manager Gavin Canaan. “While our existing seminar programme continues to be in high demand worldwide, we are also exploring new ways to offer education and product-specific training to our users.”
Canaan says that although “face-to-face interaction is always going to be uniquely valuable,” the company sees “great potential” in online resources for training and education. “Product tutorial videos are something we are putting a lot of effort into developing as well as broader webinars on a variety of topics,” he continues, “ranging from technical content to broader interests.
“For example, Buford Jones, who has mixed Pink Floyd and Eric Clapton, has been leading webinars interviewing other veteran engineers who bring a wealth of information and insights in discussing their personal experiences in the world of professional audio. As the tools in our business become increasingly complex and exact, we see a growing need to provide training and education and offer it in a variety of delivery formats.”
“There are several topics and products we offer training on, but currently the Wireless Mastered Series is in high demand,” says Tuomo Tolonen, manager of Shure Distribution’s pro audio group. “In this course, we talk specifically about RF technology to give participants a better idea of how these devices work. Wireless systems have become an integral part of engineers started in the business and finding opportunities for them to grow”.
Supplementing the employment agency is the Soulsound Resource Centre, an online membership scheme which focusses on “employability and continued professional development”. “We do not offer a ‘course’ as such,” explains de la Soul, “but aim to plug the ‘real-world’ gaps in formal education through online masterclasses and interviews [and] in-depth looks at how successful engineers and producers have made their way in the world – and spend quite a lot of time perving at bits of gear and finding out how the greats use them.
“We are building a community of audiophiles!”