Standards News

FIve ESTA Standards in Public Review

Five standards and draft standards are posted for public review on the ESTA website at People materially affected by these standards or proposed standards are invited to visit the website and to comment on them before the comment due dates noted. In order of due-date and then alpha-numeric designation, the documents are:
BSR E1.4-2, Entertainment Technology - Statically Suspended Rigging Systems, is a new draft standard for statically suspended rigging systems (dead-hung battens and grids) permanently installed in performances spaces, places of assembly, and other areas used for entertainment purposes. It establishes minimum performance criteria, recommendations and guidelines that can be used for installation, use, maintenance and inspection purposes. Comments are due before the end of the day 17 June 2019.
ANSI E1.27-2 -- 2009 (R2014), Entertainment Technology -- Recommended Practice for Permanently Installed Control Cables for Use with DMX512-A Products, is an existing standard being considered for reaffirmation. It's the second part of a two-part standard for DMX512 cabling, and is for permanently installed cables. The first part, ANSI E1.27-1, is for portable control cables. Comments are due no later than 1 July 2019.
ANSI E1.30-3 -- 2009 (R2014), EPI 25 Time Reference in ACN Systems Using SNTP and NTP, is another existing standard being considered for reaffirmation. It's another recipe in the E1.30 cookbook for ACN. It offers ways of providing a time reference so that events can be synchronized. Comments are due no later than 1 July 2019.
ANSI E1.30-10 -- 2009 (R2014), EPI 32, Identification of Draft Device Description Language Modules, is another existing standard being considered for reaffirmation. It recommends way of identifying a Device Description Language Module for ACN as a trial version, one under development, not for release yet. ANSI E1.30-10 is part of an open series of E1.30 documents that suggests ways of doing common tasks with ANSI E1.17, Architecture for Control Networks. Comments are due no later than 1 July 2019.
BSR E1.59, Entertainment Technology--Object Transform Protocol (OTP), is a new draft standard describing a mechanism to transfer object transform information such as position, orientation and velocity over an IP network using a subset of the [ACN] protocol suite. It covers data format, data protocol, data addressing, and network management. Data transmitted is intended to coordinate visual and audio elements of a production and should not be used for safety critical applications. The document's authors are anxious to get some public review response on the document. Please respond with "Yes" if the draft is acceptable; responses need not be limited to objections. Comments are due no later than 1 July 2019.

7th May 2019

Yamaha’s New Audioversity Webinar Series Offers Fresh, More Interactive Approach for Audio Professionals

Yamaha’s New Audioversity Webinar Series Offers Fresh, More Interactive Approach for Audio Professionals

Worldwide – Mid-May sees the start of a brand new series of webinars from Yamaha, aimed at professional audio engineers, systems integrators and venue technicians. Taking a fresh and engaging new approach, each webinar will run twice to ensure that as many participants as possible from across Europe, the Americas, Russia, Africa and the Middle East can take part.

For many years Yamaha has been renowned for its training, helping tens of thousands of users in more than 50 countries worldwide to deliver the best audio experience to audiences. The new webinars form part of Yamaha’s new Audioversity training initiative, which ushers in an even more deeply involved era of education and training that will lead to increased satisfaction and confidence for customers, as well as trying to deliver a brighter future for the pro audio industry as a whole.

Hosted by Yamaha product specialists Andy Cooper and Karl Christmas who are familiar faces to audio professionals across the globe, the new webinar series begins on Wednesday 15th May, with a session focusing on system design using CL and QL series digital mixing consoles.

The series will continue at approximately monthly intervals and cover a wide range of pro-level topics aimed at the live production, hospitality, house of worship, corporate installation and broadcast markets.

Each webinar will take place at 10am and again at 5pm UK time*. For those who are unable to participate, they will be archived for later viewing.

“With these Audioversity webinars we have taken a new look at what we offer,” says Atsushi Kitagawa, General Manager at Yamaha R&D Professional Audio (UK). “We are making them more interactive, with Q&A sessions, as well as adding interviews and other useful content.

“We want to engage with as many audio professionals around the world as possible and give our webinars much more of a face-to-face training feel. I believe that they will make a very positive difference throughout the professional sound market.”

Participants will need to register in advance for each webinar. For the 10am (UK time) session on 15th May please register here. For the 5pm (UK time) session on the same day please register here.

26th April 2019

ROE Visual Supports Backstage Academy with LED Technology

ROE Visual Supports Backstage Academy with LED Technology

UK – With the delivery of a batch of LED panels and two days of intensive training ROE Visual and Backstage Academy have kicked of their partnership, investing in the knowledge of future technicians.

ROE Visual will sponsor Backstage Academy with several types of its LED panels, thereby providing these industry-renowned products for training purposes.

Backstage Academy has earned a reputation as a centre of excellence for backstage training, specialising in degree courses, short courses and bespoke training programmes. Positioned right at the heart of Production Park, Europe’s leading Live Industry destination, students have the unique opportunity to be surrounded by world-leading Live Events companies.

“ROE Visual has always been keen to support the industry with in-depth knowledge on LED technology in general and the use of its LED panels,” states Marina Prak, marketing manager for ROE Visual. “That’s why we offer the ROE Academy on several locations or as in-house training. The importance of knowledge transfer can’t be over-estimated. Knowing Miles for quite some years it was not difficult to start a partnership when Backstage Academy contacted us with a request for sponsoring.”

“We are pleased to be supporting Backstage Academy with ROE Visual products and look forward to hosting the ROE Academy at Production Park. Access to these excellent facilities is a nice add-on, it will allow us to support our UK clients and users with training activities closer to home”, comments Auke Meijer, sales director.

Providing some of the most frequently used LED panels for current events and tours will bring the students LED knowledge up-to-date with the industry standard products. ROE Visual will provide the Carbon series CB5 as well as the Black Pearl BP3 LED panels, including a complete set of hanging, stacking accessories and processors.

With this partnership Backstage Academy continues its strategy to link with the best manufacturers and brands”, states Miles Marsden, industry partnerships director for Backstage Academy. “This cooperation is a key example of how industry-leading manufacturers can play a role in educating and inspiring the future generation of technicians.”


23rd April 2019

South African Government Supports Backstage Academy Style Training Initiative

South African Government Supports Backstage Academy Style Training Initiative

UK & South Africa – For over a decade, Backstage Academy has been working with the South African Roadies Association (SARA) to explore the creation of a training initiative for the live events industry in South Africa. The ultimate goal of this collaboration is to establish a live events training institution based on the Backstage Academy model to provide the young people of South Africa with the skills and opportunities needed for the successful and continuing growth of the live events sector on the African continent.

In March 2019, this journey took a major step forward as Backstage Academy welcomed a VIP delegation of South African dignitaries from the Department of Culture and Arts to their campus at Production Park in Wakefield, West Yorkshire.

Led by Vusumuzi Mkhize, the director general of the Department of Arts and Culture, the delegation spent four days in the UK visiting Production Park and meeting with key stakeholders to gain an understanding of how Backstage Academy was formed and developed into the institution it is today.

The visit marked a huge milestone on this ambitious journey and secured the agreement of the South African government to throw their support behind SARA and Backstage Academy. This resulted in an agreement to create a Memorandum of Understanding between the two organisations to drive the creation of a training initiative throughout South Africa focused on the live events industry.

Mr Mkhize commented: “The Department of Arts and Culture in South Africa is excited that Backstage Academy and SARA have come on board to journey with us. This project to drive live events training is of enormous importance to our country to bridge the skills gap in the sector. The public private partnership will help the south African Government to achieve this objective and create job opportunities for the youth.”

Adrian Brooks, founder and chairman of Backstage Academy, commented: “We are delighted to be in this position at long last. Mr. Mkhize has confirmed that the government of South Africa will give their backing to the establishment of a Backstage Academy style inclusive training initiative to benefit aspiring live events professionals across South Africa and the wider African continent.

“The initiative will be delivered by the industry, for the industry, and is a proud example of the use of the 3Cs – collaboration cooperation and competition – to drive up the skills levels and opportunities for all of the people in Africa. An agreement was made that a joint statement should be made between the parties to broadcast this terrific news.”

In picture: John Mogashoa (director, bilateral co-operation), Bongi Ramalepe (marketing and PR), Adrian Brooks (founder and cChairman, Backstage Academy), Vusumuzi Mkhize (the director general of the Department of Arts and Culture), Rachel Nicholson (vice principal, Backstage Academy), Freddie Nyathela (president of the South African Roadies Association), Jack Scarr (marketing and commercial director, Backstage Academy).

1st April 2019

L-Acoustics Débuts L-ISA Training Programme

L-Acoustics Débuts L-ISA Training Programme

France & USA – In the days leading up to the Prolight + Sound trade show, L-Acoustics announces the availability of training programmes for systems and mixing engineers seeking to implement L-ISA Immersive Hyperreal Sound technology, the market-leading object-based mixing technology for live events and installations. In the initial phase of roll-out, training sessions will be available by invitation only in L-Acoustics locations in Marcoussis, France; New York City, NY and Westlake Village, CA, and at select partner facilities. Phase two, planned for the fourth quarter of 2019, will extend training to a wider audience.

Sherif El Barbari, director of L-ISA Labs, notes that the accelerated interest and adoption of L-ISA technology have created a real need for a global community of expert users. “L-ISA is gaining momentum everywhere: events, touring, and experiential venues. In addition to live events such as the upcoming Aerosmith Deuces Are Wild Residency or Mark Knopfler’s current tour, we’re seeing the technology installed as the ‘house PA’ in venues such as EartH in London, Theatre Rossiya in Moscow, and on two Princess Cruises vessels. The demand for festivals is growing, too,” explains Sherif. “To accompany this industry shift to multidimensional audio, we want end users to feel fluent in designing systems and mixing with L-ISA. Having personally interacted with many systems and FOH engineers to date regarding L-ISA, I can say that inherent ease-of-use and intuitiveness make the technology quite approachable for new users. This said, object-based mixing is a different way of thinking. We know our end users want to give audiences the best possible experience and there is no substitute for hands-on training to help achieve that goal.”

L-ISA training blends theory and hands-on practice in three-day seminars, dispensed in half-day sessions, that bring together systems engineers and mixing engineers. Mixing engineers will learn to prepare, encode and mix an L-ISA show. System engineers will learn to design, implement, calibrate, and operate a sound reinforcement project built around L-ISA technology and gain privileged access to the L-ISA Tools feature pack in Soundvision 3.1.0.

The sessions are structured to begin and end with a common core relevant to both certifications, introducing L-ISA technology in a full system approach through tutorials and best practices for live object-based mixing in static and dynamic settings. The program branches out mid-seminar to role-specific sessions for systems engineers and mixing engineers with differentiated tasks, learning paths and objectives. To conclude the seminar, systems and mixing engineers reconvene to discuss L-ISA project management, considering native L-ISA pre-production and guest engineer support, as well as the process of transitioning from stereo to L-ISA. Following the seminar, system engineers and mixing engineers will receive official certification from L-Acoustics acknowledging their completion of the programme.

Etienne Corteel, L-Acoustics director of scientific outreach, adds: “Accompanying end users in the optimal operation of our systems through training has always been central to our vision as an organisation. Offering L-ISA training worldwide is the next milestone in that ongoing effort. Furthermore, by offering sessions in small groups, we can provide highly relevant and personalised instruction that addresses individual end-user needs and questions. We believe this approach will serve the defined learning goals well, but also foster an environment of peer-to-peer exchanges and enrichment.”

In 2019, L-Acoustics will issue 6,000 training certificates to participants in 50 countries in results-oriented sessions ranging from Systems Fundamentals and Variable Curvature Line Source to L-ISA technology and more.

27th March 2019

Sennheiser Sound Academy

Sennheiser Sound Academy

UK – Sennheiser Sound Academy training courses are now online for 2019. Designed for RF technicians, AV integrators, sound engineers, designers or consultants, a wide variety of courses are now available including Audio for Meeting Rooms and Wireless Audio for AV Integrators, held at Sennheiser UK in Marlow and Wireless Mics Monitoring Essentials, held at Stage Electrics in Bristol.

Run by Sennheiser’s customer development and application engineers (CDAE) team, the courses are aimed at both new and existing users and will provide the skills and confidence to operate multichannel wireless systems, covering acoustics and electrotechnology, wireless mics and monitoring, antenna technology, microphone technology, frequency management and wireless monitoring.

Each course offers a combination of classroom training, which includes hands-on practical modules and eLearning.

For full course listings visit:

21st March 2019

Free Certified dLive Console Training in April Hosted by A.C. Entertainment Technologies

Free Certified dLive Console Training in April Hosted by A.C. Entertainment Technologies

UK – dLive specialist reseller, A.C. Entertainment Technologies Ltd. (AC-ET) is providing free certified training in April on Allen & Heath's premier digital mixing consoles range.

To be held on Wednesday 24th April 2019 at AC-ET's northern office in Leeds, attendees will learn how to harness the full power of the dLive range from qualified engineers assisted by AC-ET's dedicated Audio sales division and will end the day with certified dLive engineer status.

Owing to the dLive's very intuitive user interface and world class audio quality, the training session will provide an ideal hands-on introduction to the full range for audio professionals working in touring, broadcast, prestige installations, theatres and corporate events.

The event begins at 9:30am with tea/coffee, gets underway at 10am, and finishes at approximately 3pm. A buffet lunch will be provided, plus a tour of AC-ET's facilities.

Places are limited so register now to guarantee a place at this free event, by visiting or

15th March 2019

AC Entertainment Technologies

Green Hippo Week at Backstage Academy a success for Visual Design students First of many manufacturer weeks planned for 2019

Green Hippo Week at Backstage Academy a success for Visual Design students First of many manufacturer weeks planned for 2019

UK – Green Hippo has been visiting Backstage Academy and providing Hippotizer training for a number of years now, during which time it’s seen the education facility grow from strength to strength. 

Therefore, when the Academy decided to hold a dedicated Green Hippo Week recently, in which ten first-year students and six second-year students participated, the manufacturer provided maximum support by sending senior product specialist, Lanz Short, along for the duration.

Under the tutelage of him, and Backstage Academy’s course leader in Live Visual Design & Production, Graham Thorne, the students were tasked with producing a project – a show, performance or event – resourced with all the ingredients that they might have expected in a Masterchef kitchen. These ranged from Notch, Maya and Isadora software platforms, while in the hardware domain Hippotizers, Avo lighting controllers, MIDI controllers, Blackmagic three-camera set-up (for recording and live streaming) even Kinect sensors were all on offer to enhance the experience.

Explaining the programme, Graham Thorne said the experience was largely classroom based and project focused. “We put the students in Studio C, gave them an overview, along with three options and then just said ‘go’. We wanted to be able to see their process and encouraged them to make mistakes; for instance some were plugging in lights before creating a mood board.

“At the same time I wanted to invite a rep from Green Hippo for two days but in the end we were privileged to have Lanz for the entire week.”

And the Green Hippo man was certainly impressed, particularly with how adventurous some of the creations were. “It is clear that Backstage Academy is producing pro technicians that will hit the ground running by the time they graduate,” he exclaimed at the end of the experience.

“Green Hippo’s media servers are extremely popular in the events sector, with their powerful real-time workflow, and it is to the benefit of both the graduates and Green Hippo that Backstage Academy has the ability to produce the most knowledgeable Hippotizer operators. I enjoyed watching and following their progress, it’s always interesting to see people’s first experience with Hippotizer.”

Based on the questions he was asked on the opening day, Lanz planned a mini lecture and product demo for the following morning relating to content creation and projector positions based on the audience eye position. “Once the project was up to speed and everyone started working through their role I would be in the room observing, offering advice and giving mini tutorials on any task required,” he said.

“The Hippo Week team was full of ideas and highly ambitious at the planning stage. The knowledge they had gained in their first few months at Backstage Academy had given them that drive to aim high, my only challenge was to get across that not every show has to be as technically complex as possible, but it did make them use a lot of Hippotizer’s features so that made me smile.”

The students decided to test the DMX component in Hippotizer with their Avolites Quartz lighting desk. “They had it up and running without my aid and in the end they decided to control the show with a combination of parameters from the lighting desk, and parts of the show being operated by Hippotizer’s built in real-time timeline,” Lanz continued.”

Summarising the week, Graham Thorne said, “This was not a competition, they were all winners. Instead, we gave the students some useful feedback at the end.”

And Lanz Short echoed the sentiments. “Hippo Week now feels essential to get the students to fully understand the ‘why’ rather than the ‘how’. The ‘how’ is easy, the ‘why’ needs more thought and Hippo Week gives them the time to think.

When I reflected afterwards, I saw real potential in the team so I decided to write an email to everyone telling them it wasn’t just a case of popping in, but that this was only the start of a dialogue that I hope runs for years to come. Hippo Week really is a win win for Backstage Academy and Green Hippo.”

Miles Marsden, industry partnerships director for Backstage added: “This is our first dedicated Manufacturer Week of 2019 and it has set the standard for a vigorous programme to follow with our other industry partners.”

Commented Kira O’Brien, a first-year student on the Live Visual Design & Production course: "I really enjoyed my experience during Hippo Week. It gave me the chance to increase my knowledge of the technical side of a production. I learnt how to do a projection study and projection map three very different surfaces, including a half cylinder and model castle. I had very little knowledge of all areas of the industry before joining the LVDP course and I really appreciate opportunities like Green Hippo week as it gives me experience working first hand with the media servers, putting on a small scale production."

In picture: Lanz Short and Graham Thorne line up (centre) with Backstage Academy students.

Green Hippo Week at Backstage Academy a success for Visual Design students First of many manufacturer weeks planned for 2019Green Hippo Week at Backstage Academy a success for Visual Design students First of many manufacturer weeks planned for 2019

12th March 2019

Yamaha and SW19 Studios Welcome Sound Engineers to the World of RIVAGE

Yamaha and SW19 Studios Welcome Sound Engineers to the World of RIVAGE

UK - Yamaha Commercial Audio and London’s SW19 Studios are joining forces in mid-March to host an exclusive, two-day Welcome to the World of RIVAGE event. Taking place on Thursday 7th and Friday 8th March at SW19 Studios in Wimbledon, it comprises a free series of technical training seminars which offer professional and aspiring sound engineers an opportunity to get up close and personal with Yamaha’s RIVAGE PM7 and PM10 digital mixing systems.

Day 1 will focus on showcasing RIVAGE PM7 as a the perfect solution for great, reliable sound for live venue and festival engineers, sculpting exceptional audio for today’s touring bands. Yamaha product specialists and SW19 staff will be on hand to deliver an overview of the system, highlighting key features and demonstrating its applications in a high quality rehearsal environment.

There will be plenty of time for hands-on exploration during the 90 minute sessions, which will help guests to feel confident navigating the console and taking advantage of the many features, networking with I/O and being ‘festival ready’ for when they find themselves behind a RIVAGE console this summer.

For those wanting extra information about the sound quality, a special ‘critical listening session’ will be set up in one of the studios, allowing guests to experience the full detail of the system pre-amps, including the Rupert Neve Designs SILK Red and Blue emulations.

Day 2 offers those with some experience of RIVAGE and/or those who want to delve deep into the system. Through a series of bookable one-on-one sessions, guests can book to spend time with a Yamaha Product specialist and a RIVAGE system. Content will be customised to the needs of the guest - everything from converting an existing show file through to specifying and setting up a complex system for an upcoming tour. These intimate consultation sessions will be designed to help push you forward in your RIVAGE journey.

Participation in this event is free, but pre-registration is essential. Please book a place via

Places are limited and will be secured on a first come first served basis, so please book early to avoid disappointment.

Sessions will be taking place on Thursday March 7th at 14:00 / 16:00 / 18:00 / 20:00 and on Friday arch 8th at 10:00 / 12:00 / 14:00 / 16:00

SW19 Studios is located at 62 Weir Road, Wimbledon, London SW19 8UG.

26th February 2019

Backstage Academy Partners with Midas Consoles

Backstage Academy Partners with Midas Consoles

UK – Backstage Academy, the leading live event production educational facility, has agreed a sponsorship deal with Midas Consoles, which will see the industry-leading manufacturer providing mixing desks for training purposes.

Commenting on the new relationship, Miles Marsden, Backstage Academy’s industry partnerships director, said this would be a further boost to the sound component of the Live Events Production three-year BA (Hons) degree course.

“Everyone knows that Midas produces state-of-the-art mixing desks in the analogue world, setting standards on major tours worldwide throughout the ‘90s. They have extended this product format into the digital world, with the M32 console. We are delighted they have loaned us a pair of these desks and DL32 I/O boxes for our students to learn on.”

Midas's design goal in creating the M32 was to integrate the classic Midas sound with advanced modern technology to completely redefine and future-proof what a medium-format live console can offer. 

Joel Perry, artist relations for Midas, has known Marsden for 20 years. “We are pleased to be supporting Backstage Academy with Midas products and look forward to utilising the space at the Academy and Production Park for training in the future. Having access to these excellent facilities is a real bonus as we help to inspire the next generation of mix engineers. It’s a win-win situation.”

The partnership continues Backstage Academy’s strategy to link with the best manufacturers and brands. States marketing and commercial director, Jack Scarr: “This partnership is key to the success of the new live sound engineering pathway of our Live Events Production degree course, which we started in September 2018.”

26th February 2019