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Britannia Row celebrates live sound training launch

Staff and students and a host of live sound industry figures gathered at Britannia Row's former warehouse in Wandsworth to celebrate the success of its first three month full-time Live Sound Technology course.

Britannia Row Productions Training celebrated the successful completion of its first three-month live sound technology course at the production company’s former warehouse in Wandsworth at the end of September. According to Matthias Postel, managing director of Britannia Row Productions Training, the course aims to fill a gap in live sound education. “There are studio-focused college courses, degree courses that are also very studio-focused and formal apprenticeships in technical theatre, where sound is but a portion. It is this situation that lead to this vision of ‘let’s build a training course that is actually based on what the industry needs.’” The training is very practical, and very hands on, says course director Barry Bartlett: “We didn’t really want to be doing anything that was straight classroom-type teaching.”

In addition to the training, the top graduate of each intake is guaranteed a one year paid apprenticeship with Britannia Row Productions. Bartlett adds that its short length also makes it very intense, “which is a benefit, as it really equates to what life is on the road. I feel it’s like going on a three-month tour, four times a year. That gives our trainees a much more realistic picture of what the work pressure and the work load is like in in a working environment. They don’t have much time to be students, they have to get on with it and get the job done.” Students also have the advantage of access to Britannia Row Productions’ entire inventory “and also inventory from other manufacturers who have given us huge support and loaned us equipment”, added Bartlett. Yamaha, Midas, DiGiCo and Avid are the main consoles focused on during the course of students’ training. There are also many gig visits, which have so far included Rock Choir at O2, Justin Timberlake at Olympic Park, a variety of shows at Somerset House and Soundgarden at the O2 Acdemy Brixton. An upcoming gig visit to Peter Gabriel’s O2 gig is also scheduled. Going forward, a part-time programme is also under development, which is expected to begin in January 2014. Pictured above at the launch celebration are (from L-R) Gonçalo Lopes, Live Sound Technology graduate and recipient of the Britannia Row Productions job; Barry Bartlett; Mike Lowe, director, Britannia Row Productions; Bryan Grant, managing director, Britannia Row Productions; Matthias Postel and Jamie Burgess, Live Sound Technology graduate.