After an incredibly successful 2014, which saw them take on Rock Royalty at Sonisphere Festival, Toni&Guy Mainstage at the Copper Box and The Acoustic Stage at Looe Music Festival, the Youth Production Network (YPN) are setting their sights on bigger and bigger projects beginning with the launch of their brand new website.
Set up in 2010, the YPN has a simple goal of supporting and helping young people get invaluable work experience and onsite training in live event production. With their unique and innovative Crew Chief system, meaning that all onsite work experience places are managed by a YPN trained Crew Chief, they have successfully placed young people on to event sites of the highest level, including the London Olympic Big 4 Torch Relay Concerts and Hyde Park finale, Queens Jubilee Family Festival, Chime For Change concert in London UK, World Cup Brazuca Launch in Rio Brazil and last year saw them produce and manage the entire Rock Royalty area at Sonisphere Festival, the first full YPN managed area on a festival site.
YPN has spent its short 5 years building connections with production and youth organisations around the world, and now has links to over 45 countries and counting. Founder Rachel Haughey says; 'YPN is available for all young people, no matter where they come from or what resources they may have. The real test is the on site test, and talent comes equally from every corner. YPN’s worldwide network is a meeting place for like-minded individuals and groups, and every day we are truly inspired by the incredible up and coming talent and innovative projects that young people are pioneering all over the world.'
After perfecting their crew systems and proving themselves on event sites around the world, the YPN are launching their exciting new website at www.ypn.international. The website helps paint a picture of all the hard work that the YPN has done over the last few years, as well as all of the information you could need in order to book a YPN crew for your event. YPN UK Director Liam West says ‘The YPN Website has been a tough project to finish, down to the sheer volume of information and previous work that we’ve already done’ he adds ‘we are all incredibly happy with how the website has come out, but this is only the beginning and we have big plans for the future, so watch this space.’
YPN is available for all young people, no matter where they come from or what resources they may have. The real test is the on site test, and talent comes equally from every corner.
As well as launching the website, the YPN have also been hard at work, putting together some unique and innovative projects which are set to be launched later in the year. The YPN Training Services will see the YPN Crew Chiefs putting together a unique live learning experience, while the YPN Live Stages are being designed as a cost effective stage solution for events and festivals, all managed by YPN crews. More information about the projects will be launched in the coming months, so be sure to keep your eyes on the website.
To kick off this year’s YPN Summer Season, the YPN held their annual launch event on the 19th March 2015, at the Britannia Row Training Academy’s Ossiers Road location.
Mike Lowe (Britannia Row Productions) said ‘We were pleased to be able to again open our doors for the event and to support YPN’s endeavours to help young people at the potential beginning of their careers in the world of production. Endeavours which are symbiotic with our own in live sound training.
Celebrating the end of an era for Britannia Row and the Launch of the YPN’s 2015 Summer Season, the event was set to be an exciting combination of top industry speakers and great live music.
The afternoon saw a host of top production industry mentors giving inspirational talks to a group of eager young people. Speakers included Rachel Haughey (YPN International Director), Barrie Knight (BK40 Productions), Aisling O’Connor (Cato Academy Graduate and YPN Crew Chief), Mike Lowe (Britannia Row Productions), Ipojucan Icaro & Rogerio de Souza (Spectaculu, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil) and for the first time a panel of the YPN Crew Chiefs were on hand to answer all of the audiences burning questions. Young people from all over the country were in attendance, and took full advantage of this rare opportunity to pick some of the industry’s top staff’s brains.
The evening saw the audience get a firsthand look at what the YPN can achieve, with a live show fully produced and engineered by the YPN Crew Chiefs. Performing were a host of exciting new artists including Post-Hardcore 5 Piece from Plymouth LASTONEOUT, Blues/Rock Duo Mickey and the Milkshakes and Acoustic duo, originally from Lithuania now living in London, Double Aces. This year's YPN launch was sponsored by Britannia Row Productions, White Light, RES, Creative Draping and The National Skills Academy: Creative and Cultural Skills.
YPN UK Director and Producer of the event Liam West said: ‘This year’s launch event has been our biggest to date. We’re all incredibly proud of what the team has produced, and the turn out we’ve had has been fantastic, with a number of potential future crew already having been spotted today’
For the YPN, the event kicked off this year's Summer Season Tour of onsite crew and live stage projects. Up and coming production talent will be travelling across the country to enjoy valuable on-site crew positions, supported by YPN production mentors and the new generation of YPN Crew Chiefs, who will be leading the teams on site this summer. Any young people wishing to apply for these summer positions, should contact the YPN at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hosting the event, the Osiers Road building in Wandsworth, South London, has been home to the renowned audio company for 24 years, the last two years as the base for the Britannia Row Productions Training academy, following the move to a new company headquarters at Twickenham Green. The Training Academy will continue its operations at Twickenham from April, with announcements of significant new developments expected soon.
'The time was right,' said Brit Row's Mike Lowe of the decision to move out of Osiers Road. 'We still had a year left to run on the lease, and could have stayed. But we'd already started thinking about the short and part-time courses for the Training Academy, which we knew we could run at Twickenham, and the landlord made an offer which was beneficial.'
Barry Bartlett, course director for Britannia Row Training Academy, said that the short courses would provide better accessibility for those who could not commit to the solid 12-week block of time required for the intensive course. The short and part-time courses, announced earlier this month, include a two-day Basic PA course, a 15 x 1-day Live Sound Fundamentals course and a 15 x 1-day Live Sound Intermediate course. The intensive 12-week Live Sound Technology Course, which covers over 440 hours of training and hands-on practice, has so far been successfully completed by 61 students.
Bartlett said: 'With the 12-week intensive courses, we have found that the different levels of knowledge and experience at the beginning of the course were evened out by the end: in effect, the more experienced students raise the others up to their level, so that everyone finishes at the same high standard. When we came to think about offering the training in shorter or part-time courses, we realised we would lose that beneficial effect, so it made sense to be able to offer training at different levels - for beginners, intermediates and so on.'
The full-time 12-week course will return later this year, and we can expect new announcements from the company in the near future.