28th June 2013

Behind the scenes at RAW FEST

Tcharn Clabburn, student on the Foundation Degree in Live Events Production at Backstage Academy, talks about his work experience on Raw Fest, Manchester’s mini charity music festival…


I travelled to Sale in Manchester on 15th June with around 14 other students from the FdA course to run the production of Raw Fest, a charity music festival showcasing 20 unsigned acts, with Mr Scruff headlining the main stage.

Some of the students had built the Mini Stage outdoors the day before, and there was also an indoor marquee with a small stage. All the sound system had arrived from STS Touring and was in boxes, and there was some extra sound equipment that we brought from Backstage Academy.


It was our task to unpack the boxes and set up the sound system up on the main stage before the gig, with the help of Backstage Academy Technical Director Gareth Welbourn. We had to dig a line under the ground to run the cables from FOH, stack the PA on the side of the stage and test the system.

The top speakers were Turbosound Floodlights, which have a dispersion of 25 degrees vertical and 50 degrees horizontal. This made covering the crowd area a lot easier. The top speakers were loaded with a 12 low inch driver, a 6.5 inch mid driver and a 1 inch HF driver which meant the top speakers were had plenty of grunt.


The bass bins were twin horn loaded 18 inch drivers, there were four of these each side of the stage, in my opinion there wasn’t enough power in the bottom end this could have been due to the amount of head room that was left on the amps. The mixer was a Yamaha M7, which had 48 channels.


I was left to mix the FOH and monitor mix for the artists from the main stage FOH, which was great as I got my own desk to play with.Image

The other students handled the band changeovers and we got into a great routine working together. It was a really good day.


The event raised money for Backstage Academy CIC too, which funds training and employment programmes for disadvantaged groups to help them get into the industry.

Photograhy: Tom Biddle Photography www.tombiddle.co.uk