Experience of FdA Live Events Production

A Student's Insight...

We took 5 minutes to chat to Alex Burrows, a student on the Live Events Production course to find out about his experience of studying at Backstage Academy and what have been the standout moments so far…

Why did you choose to study at Backstage Academy?

I chose to apply to Backstage Academy due to its unique approach to the industry and its specialist angle being for the live events sector, rather than your tradition drama school approach. The location was always a big selling point. Being based inside LS-Live is a huge advantage to any course, everyone on site is very supportive and goes out of their way to assist you getting your foot in the door. You meet so many big names in the industry outside of lectures just walking across the car park.

What has been your most memorable moment while studying Live Events Production?

I would say the most memorable moment has been building my connection to LS-Live and working very closely with them and the other companies in the group such as Brilliant Stage and Perry Scenic on some incredible projects such as building props for Helene Fischer in Germany at her production rehearsals, to working on the design and electrical installation on the LED set for Lorde. But the biggest highlight for me has to be going out on the All Time Low and You Me At Six arena tour as the Set Carpenter for LS-Live.

Is there an equal amount of theory/lectures and practical work?

The balance of theory to practical work varies from module to module. Each module is balanced well though, for example within the staging module you have informal lectures about different types of staging, but then you get to meet and find out about external companies such as Brilliant Stage and their work. The module is designed to take you from learning about the types of staging and what you could do, to then learning the basics of AutoCAD, how to draw your stage design and how to produce the paper work to go with it, to then getting all of the parts delivered to a pre-build space and using your plans to build it as a group. You also get to work with the LS-Live staff and help to assemble a house stage in the studio.

Who has been the most interesting guest lecturer and why?

Roger Lindsey was for me the most inspirational guest lecturer. One of the most prolific sound engineers in the industry, the advice that he gave us not just about sound but about making your way in the industry was inspirational. Within each module you get to meet and talk to so many big names in the industry it really is a unique experience I don’t think you would get anywhere else.

What piece of advice would you give to a sixth form/college student who wants to get into the live events industry?

I’d say get as much experience as you can, even if it’s not paid, get yourself into a venue or local hire company even if it’s cleaning lights or peeling tape of truss. You will learn so much from being around a warehouse that will really help you one day. Also keep your options open, you’ll come into Backstage saying you want to be an LD or sound engineer, but you get so much information about different departments like rigging, set, production and artist liaison I can almost guarantee you will come away after a few months doing something completely different but getting so much more from it.

What are you hoping to do when you’ve completed the course?

Hopefully I will be continuing my time at Backstage Academy and following on to the top up year for Live Event Production. The third year is designed in a way that will allow me to easily continue my work for LS-Live whilst studying. Hopefully heading into some more set design work and getting back out on tour again!

To find out more about the Live Events Production course go to


All Time Low

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