People News Headlines
Theatres Trust announces 24 influential new Ambassadors committed to championing the past, present and future of live theatre
PLASA Awards for Innovation open for entries
The PLASA Awards for Innovation are now open for entries. Product manufacturers and developers are invited to enter the annual awards by 17 August (Friday). Successfully nominated products will feature on the Innovation Gallery throughout the PLASA Show (16-18 September, London Olympia) with winners announced at a special ceremony on 17 September.
Entries will be judged by an independent panel of industry experts, with up to eight awards, including the possibility of Gold Award, set to be given to products and solutions that demonstrate a new style of thinking, improve technical practice and safety, introduce new technology, materials or techniques, or offer new commercial advantages. The PLASA Award for Sustainability may be presented to a solution that achieves significant power reduction, has a positive impact on the environment or makes an effective use of renewable energy.
The PLASA Awards are crowned by the prestigious Gottelier Award which celebrates the lifetime achievement of a pioneering professional working within live entertainment technology. PLASA members and pre-registered PLASA Show visitors are eligible to vote for this accolade which, in 2017, was presented to Wayne Howell, the founder of Artistic Licence.
For more information on how to enter a product or nominate a product developer, please visit:
4th July 2018
Theatres Trust announces 24 influential new Ambassadors committed to championing the past, present and future of live theatre
UK – Theatres Trust has announced its first ever list of ambassadors who will work with the organisation to ensure the UK’s theatres are protected and secured for future generations to enjoy.
Theatres Trust promotes great theatre buildings through advising, funding and campaigning on behalf of theatres across the UK. In 2017, the Trust worked with around 350 theatres and hundreds of community groups and industry professionals to ensure current and future generations have access to good quality theatre buildings where they can be inspired by, and enjoy, live theatre.
Celebrated names adding their voice in support of the work of the Theatres Trust include senior industry members, theatre makers and distinguished actors working in stage, film and TV:
- Samira Ahmed
- Gemma Arterton
- Alan Ayckbourn
- Michael Ball
- Pippa Bennett-Warner
- Matthew Bourne
- Jo Brand
- Alexandra Burke
- Jack Dee
- Mel Giedroyc
- David Hare
- Miranda Hart
- Lenny Henry
- Beverley Knight
- Kwame Kwei-Armah
- Jude Law
- Cameron Mackintosh
- David Morrissey
- Bill Nighy
- Elaine Paige
- Siobhan Redmond
- Tim Rice
- John Simm
- Meera Syal
“It encouraged my imagination. Performance can explain situations that are hard to articulate. You see what we can do to each other and learn to understand each other.
“As an actor, the experience of working on stage has always been the highlight of my job. There is a chemistry that occurs between audience and performer that bonds you for the duration of the piece which can often be magical.
“I am proud to be an ambassador for the Theatres Trust and encourage the preservation and promotion of our theatres. The UK has an important role in celebrating this art form internationally as it plays such a large part of our heritage. Let’s start with diversifying our audiences.”
Producer and theatre owner Cameron Mackintosh says: "When I started as a producer, I never thought I would end up owning some of London's most beautiful theatres. Apart from producing musicals my other passion in life has always been architecture. I discovered putting together a musical and re-inventing an historic building for the 21st century are pretty similar tasks.
To get the best out of a play you have to listen to the author and to get the best out of an old building you have to listen to the original architect. Only then can you bring something fresh and new to the project. The great theatre architects Matcham, Sprague and Phipps had a brilliant grasp of how to bond audiences and players together in an exciting yet cunningly intimate space often on difficult sites and, thanks to the tireless campaigning of the Theatres Trust, we can still enjoy many of these magnificent buildings in a level of comfort never envisaged when they were built 100 years ago.
That so many of these theatres have not only survived but are thriving is a great tribute to the Trust and I am honoured to become an Ambassador."
Singer and actress Beverley Knight says: “As an actress and singer nothing compares to standing on stage and looking out to a packed audience. There is a special connection in that moment which is made even more special by the beauty of these theatre buildings. I am an Ambassador of the Theatres Trust as I want to ensure these buildings remain open for generations to come.”
Actor David Morrissey says: “I grew up in Liverpool and much of my formative years were spent at the Everyman Theatre, starting in their Youth Theatre. Without great regional theatres like these I may not have gone on to the career I have been fortunate to have. The Theatres Trust work closely with both existing theatres and new theatres to make sure they have the right buildings to serve their communities.”
TV and Radio Presenter Samira Ahmed says: “Theatres have played a huge part in my life since I was first taken to the Wimbledon Theatre as a schoolchild to see panto and I'm passionate about their importance to British life and identity. I'm a huge supporter of the Theatres Trust campaign to ensure we protect and renew them.”
Director of the Theatres Trust, Jon Morgan says: “The Theatres Trust is honoured with the support of these influential Ambassadors who believe passionately in the UK’s theatres and the role they play in communities, towns and cities across the country. However there is more vital work needed to be done. Our grants programmes are oversubscribed and theatres across the UK continue to close or be under threat of imminent closure or demolition. Theatres Trust seeks to influence and raise additional funds in order to increase the scope of our support by helping an even greater number of theatres. With the assistance of the Ambassadors we hope to secure the future of the UK’s great theatres for future generations to enjoy.”
27th June 2018
CT Appoints New Head of Broadcast
UK – Creative Technology’s London operation has recently recruited a new head of broadcast who will represent the sector across all business activities within CT while also focusing on promoting the capabilities of the integrated networks team both to the wider broadcast industry and the whole NEP group.
Benjamin Tompsett has had a successful career in the industry for over 15 years, starting out as a broadcast engineer in the early 2000s, progressing into sales and account manager roles, including working on some world-renowned sporting events. Benjamin joins CT from a rental operations manager role with technical expertise in video, audio, communications, RF, IP and fibre transport and distribution.
“It’s fantastic to be joining the Creative Technology team in London. CT has a great reputation for delivering some of the largest and most interesting projects around the world and I look forward to helping grow the broadcast sector of the business,” says Benjamin Tompsett.
Mark Elliott, Managing director of Creative Technology UK, commented: “In many ways, broadcast is a relatively new and important sector for us, particularly where we have made a huge investment in communications, RF and IP technology but also as we are now a part of the NEP worldwide network. Ben has a clear drive and enthusiasm for the role and we’re very happy to have him on board.”
26th June 2018
Mark Pascoe Appointed to Director of Sales and Marketing at HHB Communications
UK – Professional audio specialist and supplier, HHB Communications Ltd, has announced the appointment of Mark Pascoe to the position of director of sales and marketing. Bringing with him two decades of professional audio sales and technical marketing experience, Mark will be leading the sales and marketing teams’ efforts for HHB and Scrub. Working alongside group sales director, Steve Angel and managing director, Ian Jones, Mark will be based at HHB’s north-west London headquarters, but will also be found at Scrub’s office in Fitzrovia on a regular basis.
Having graduated from the University of Surrey’s renowned Tonmeister course in 1998, Mark returned to work at HHB in broadcast sales, having interned there in 1996 during his studies. After ten years at HHB, he moved on to Dolby Laboratories, taking on various roles in sales management and technical marketing. With there being a current, heavy industry focus on next generation audio, Mark’s ten years’ experience at Dolby Laboratories gives HHB a strong and knowledgeable insight into this new and exciting market.
“I’m thrilled to be part of such a renowned team. HHB’s reputation is impeccable; and I’m both proud and excited to be representing the company as director of sales and marketing,” Mark stated. “HHB are in a great position with their distributed brands, expert knowledge and reputation as the go-to pro-audio supplier for any broadcast, post or recording facility. I look forward to guiding the most knowledgeable and dedicated team in pro-audio today; we’re all committed to serving our partners, both customers and suppliers.”
Steve Angel commented: “Mark’s reputation in the industry is exceptional. This appointment brings a fresh new perspective and I look forward to working closely with him to take our values and service to the next level.”
21st June 2018
L-Acoustics Promotes Jeff Rocha to Global Product Management Director
Technology that consistently offers a superior sonic signature, enhances the connection between audiences and performers and delivers a return on investment is core to the L-Acoustics business model and product philosophy. To further fuel this ongoing cycle of bringing unmatched innovation to market, L-Acoustics has appointed Jeff Rocha (pictured), formerly Head of Market Development for North America, to the newly created position of Director of Product Management.
As a member of the L-Acoustics Board of Directors, Jeff accompanies the product development lifecycle end to end, liaising with key stakeholders across geographies and functions to recommend and implement processes and systems that allow L-Acoustics to identify and address new business opportunities effectively and deftly. This role encompasses market intelligence and identification of key opportunities; crafting product portfolio and technology roadmaps cross-functionally in collaboration with R&D, applications, sales and marketing teams; development of marketing and sales collateral and training; and coordination of communication around products and services.
“Since joining L-Acoustics, Jeff has proven adept at forging relationships throughout the company and with external partners while leading business development in North America where we have experienced accelerated growth,” explains Anne Hamlett, Director of HR & Legal. “Bringing more than two decades of experience in touring and installation markets, Jeff is a trusted and highly regarded audio expert who blends a technical background and deep cross-functional industry experience with a successful business track record, and keen marketing instincts. These qualities make Jeff ideally suited to leading the charge on product management as L-Acoustics continues to shape the future of sound.”
Regarding the road ahead for L-Acoustics, Rocha notes, “It’s exciting for me to be able to help guide L-Acoustics into new markets via a systematic approach to product management. The more I interact with teams across L-Acoustics, the more I become convinced that our ‘secret weapon’ is the calibre of the individuals who I am fortunate to call my colleagues. I have no doubt that the breadth and depth of the talent pool at L-Acoustics, coupled with an unwavering commitment to technical excellence, will continue to drive market-leading product innovation in the coming years.”
Joining Jeff’s team as Product Manager is L-Acoustics Application Engineer Germain Simon. “Germain’s passion for sound and expertise in international install markets, as well as a history with L-Acoustics dating back to 2009, makes him an ideal product management collaborator,” says Jeff. “I look forward to partnering with Germain and teams across L-Acoustics to translate ideas into product.”
4th June 2018
Two LTM apprentices now full time LTM staff members
UK – Lift Turn Move, based in Wirral, has shown a commitment to training the future generation and can confirm that two of its apprentices, Charmaine and Josh, have now joined LTM as full time staff members.
Charmaine Pude came to LTM in 2016 to gain office experience and work towards her NVQ Level 3 in business administration. She has recently passed her NVQ and subsequently been given a full time job at LTM as a sales and purchasing assistant. Office manager Jenny Steenson states: “Char is an irreplaceable member of the team, quiet, helpful, thorough and she gets stuck into any task given to her.”
Joshua Field-Baines approached LTM in 2015 wanting to work in engineering. He has since completed his apprenticeship and is working towards his advanced apprenticeship qualification in BTEC HNC in engineering which includes an NVQ Level 4 and he is also doing his LEEA foundation training. LTM’s managing director John Jones states: “From the day he started he has absolutely immersed himself in his role, he is hard working, keen to learn and a credit to himself! We are very lucky to have gained two valuable team members at LTM.”
John Jones continues: “We know how important it is to give the younger generation a chance, the lifting industry suffers from an aging workforce, something has to be done about this. As a responsible employer we feel it is important not just to recruit talent, but to nurture it. With this in mind we have taken on a new apprentice, Jonathan Street.” He has joined LTM on an engineering apprenticeship in electrical and mechanical maintenance which involves one day of tuition at a local college to learn essential theory and four days a week working in the hoist assembly area to develop his practical skills. He will spend time in the warehouse receiving product training, dispatching goods and working with the other engineers.
Skills shortages and recruiting difficulties are considered to be some of the biggest threats facing businesses today, and The Young Apprenticeship Scheme addresses these issues directly, commenting on it, John Jones remarks: “It’s becoming increasingly difficult to recruit skilled lifting equipment engineers, so we feel that the best way forward for us is to bring new apprentices through the business.”
As well as addressing a skills shortage, the National Apprentice Scheme states that: “Apprentices tend to be eager, motivated, flexible and loyal to the company that invested in them.” These statements come as no surprise to LTM, two of their original apprentices are still at the company, and both have subsequently moved into supervisory positions and been asked to travel abroad to use their skills.
“LTM is committed to recruit at least one apprentice per year over a five-year period from 2015 to 2020. As a responsible employer, we feel it is important not just to recruit talent, but to nurture it. Ultimately it's all about the people, if we get people in with the right attitude like the guys we've had through on this scheme, then we're all set. You can teach the right skills, but you can't teach the right attitude.”
1st June 2018
AVIXA Appoints Chris Lavelle as Senior Director of Development Europe
AVIXA Appoints Chris Lavelle as Senior Director of Development Europe
Europe – AVIXA, the Audiovisual and Integrated Experience Association, has announced the appointment of Chris Lavelle (pictured) to the position of senior director of development Europe. Lavelle takes on the role having spent nine years as regional director for UK and Ireland. He will lead the team based in Munich and the UK, and will spend significant time visiting members and allied associations throughout Europe and the Middle East. Lavelle is tasked with overseeing continued market growth in the region and carrying out AVIXA’s on-going mission to serve as an industry hub.
“It’s a real pleasure to be given this exciting opportunity, and I look forward to getting started in my new role,” Lavelle said. “There has been some fantastic work done by our team in Europe, and there is a strong desire and commitment from AVIXA to do even more to deliver our message, liaise closely with our existing members and further drive membership growth. I look forward to working with our talented team and using our shared experiences and knowledge to offer the AV community the best level of service we can, whether that be providing education, working with partners, increasing awareness or helping to raise industry standards.”
The move will be effective from 1st June. Current senior director of development Europe, Pam Taggart, will be moving into a global position with AVIXA as senior director of strategic relationships, based in the US.
AVIXA has also announced a raft of team changes to reflect the association’s growth in Europe. With new roles being created and a new team structure, AVIXA’s activities in the region have increased to provide an enhanced offering to its growing European membership base. New recruits in Munich include Jennifer Leutgeb and a new European marketing manager. Jennifer is replacing AVIXA education programme manager Ally Fowler, who will step up to the role of director of international education following the retirement of Bill Thomas. A European marketing manager has been appointed and will be announced in due course.
Other developments include the promotion of Ben Barnard to regional manager, UK and Ireland. Sarah Carless will also move into a new role as member relations manager, with a new programme co-ordinator to be appointed in her stead. In addition, Valeria Rapa has been made programme co-ordinator in Italy on a permanent basis.
22nd May 2018
David Manister Promoted to Director
UK – Flashlight Ltd has announced the appointment of David Manister, a long standing employee, to a directorship role within the company. David had been in a business development position previously, helping to promote the company’s leading lighting brands to the film, TV, theatre and events markets.
David says: "I’m delighted to be given the opportunity to play my part in the continued growth of Flashlight Ltd. I’m lucky to work with a great team of highly motivated, industry professionals who help us to make sure we continue to deliver the highest level of service expected by ourselves and our customers."
Flashlight founding directors Andy Dodd and Rob Williamson commented: "We're delighted with David’s progress within the company. His enthusiasm allows us to continue to be in front of end users and support new business with a strong presence."
17th May 2018
GLP US Grows Again with Two New Hires
USA – GLP US has announced they have bolstered their team with two new members joining the company.
Brandon Jeffrey takes on the role of central regional sales manager, and industry veteran Brad Haynes joins in the newly created position of SceneX Lighting brand manager.
Brandon took a liking to the industry as early as high school becoming heavily involved with organising theatre productions, and throughout his college time. He then continued that work in his professional career putting on large scale corporate and private events. Brandon also spent time at a manufacturer’s rep company, and will bring this unique combination of experience to his role at GLP.
GLP US president Mark Ravenhill commented: “Brandon has a fantastic combination of skills and energy that will really support our customers and their projects in a very solid way. We can’t wait to get him fully embedded into his new position.”
Brandon added: “I am excited to begin work with the great team that GLP is putting together, I can’t wait to hit the ground running and help the company grow within the central territory.”
Brad Haynes joins GLP in a newly created position to promote and strengthen the company’s SceneX brand of LED solutions that it promotes in the North American markets. A 20+ year industry veteran, Brad will add his unique insight and extensive experience to GLP and the SceneX Lighting brand.
Mark Ravenhill said: “In North America, the SceneX Lighting brand has always been about supporting customers in special LED projects and installations, but it was often done on a bespoke basis. Now we want to take things to a whole new level, and I couldn’t be happier than to have Brad taking on the challenge. We have worked together in the past and his commitment, professionalism and passion are second to none.”
Brad commented: “GLP has tremendous respect in the industry as a whole. Not only because of its extremely successful products, but especially because of its family and personal approach alongside and outstanding level of support to the industry.”
Continuing, Brad added: “In SceneX, I look to continue on with that foundation I so strongly believe in by providing that same level of support throughout. SceneX isn’t just about the products but very much about the LED solutions we can provide to the industry with that level of support and backbone to make any project successful. I see SceneX as not just a product, but more importantly, a solution and a partnership that stretches beyond a single project.”
In conclusion, Mark said: “Both Brandon and Brad are fantastic additions to the GLP US team. Their professionalism and customer attitude are perfectly in line with everything we work for on a
17th May 2018
Adamson Welcomes New Education and Support Coordinator for APAC Region
Asia-Pacific – Adamson Systems Engineering has announced the appointment of Ayumi Hanano as education and support co-ordinator for the Asia-Pacific region. In her new role, Hanano will be assisting Adamson’s APAC team with technical support and is now the first point of contact for all training inquiries and initiatives in the region.
“Ayumi has already proven herself to be a valuable addition to our diverse international team,” says David Dohrmann, Adamson’s technical director for the APAC region. “She’s incredibly smart, a strong brand ambassador, and will be a major asset as we continue gaining traction in the Asian markets and increase our global focus on education and training.”
Hanano has already overseen the delivery of Adamson’s Applied Certification training for hundreds of attendees in several countries and will soon begin presenting Adamson’s recently launched Advanced Certification training as well. She’ll also be spearheading technical support for Adamson partners and users throughout the region.
Born in Japan but spending some her formative years in Birmingham, UK, Hanano returned to her native country in her mid-teens. She realised her penchant for live audio production relatively early was mixing shows while still attending upper-secondary school. Her professional career began with an FOH engineering position at well-known jazz venue Motion Blue Yokohama, a branch of Blue Note Japan. From there, she freelanced in several reputable jazz venues throughout Yokohama and Tokyo while also touring several countries as an FOH engineer with a well-known Japanese singer-songwriter.
“I’m very happy to be working with Adamson and its network of partners and end users throughout the Asia-Pacific region,” says Hanano. “I know first-hand from my years as an engineer that Adamson’s reputation for premium audio reinforcement and world-class support is well deserved. I look forward to helping audio professionals get the best possible performance from their Adamson systems in any application, and growing Adamson’s overall profile in the important markets we serve.”