entertainment • presentation • installation

PLASA Focus: Professional Development Programme

19 December 2011

USA - Free registration is now open for the PLASA Focus: Austin 2012 Professional Development Programme, a two-day programme of free educational seminars and workshops, running alongside PLASA Focus: Austin, on 22-23 February, 2012.

The programme has been designed by some of the industry's leading names and presents an opportunity for visitors to broaden their specialist knowledge and contribute to discussions about innovative projects and techniques, say organiser PLASA Events.

"Giving people the opportunity to develop their professional knowledge is key to the success of PLASA Focus: Austin 2012," comments PLASA CEO Matthew Griffiths. "We're creating an opportunity to talk about the choices behind major projects in the region, from the Austin City Limits studio and The Long Center for Performing Arts, to seminars as broad and far-reaching as the use of lighting in Hollywood."

The programme kicks-off with Green Theatre Initiatives Around the World, which is presented by the Broadway Green Alliance. This seminar is for anybody interested in sustainability in the entertainment industry and Charlie Deull, co-chairman of the Broadway Green Alliance, will unlock some of the great resources available to tap into, and explore the common approaches and differences between groups in the US and EU, including Julie's Bicycle, the Broadway Green Alliance, and The Centre for Sustainable Practices, as well as talk about the newest alliance, the International Green Theatre Alliance.

Austin City Limits Live! Is a seminar about the live music venue that is home to the KLRU-TV produced PBS program Austin City Limits, the longest running music series in American television history. The venue also plays host to 100 concerts a year and lighting designer Walter Olden, production manager Billy Heaslip, and lighting consultant William Strother will discuss the challenges, opportunities, joys, and heartaches of designing the lighting and technical systems.

Another scoop for PLASA Focus is Josh Thatcher. One of the top lighting control programmers working in Hollywood today, his credits include Iron Man, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Thor, and Star Trek. He is currently working on the next Star Trek film, directed by JJ Abrams and is taking a day off to fly to Austin to present a seminar entitled Advanced Lighting Control Technology for the Big Screen, using photos and video to illustrate some of the incredible lighting effects that he has been central to creating.

Staying with lighting, the Palmer Auditorium served many years as a venue for everyone from Elvis to the Clash. When it was completely renovated in 2008, much of the building materials were recycled and reused in the new construction, but the building was re-designed from top to bottom. As the lighting supervisor, Todd Drga is intimately familiar with the lighting system and operations. Drga will host a lively discussion of the venue, how the lighting system works for the events in the space, and the lessons learned from building a green building.

For theatre and staging professionals, It's About the Art... Not the Technology, is a special seminar presented by the Stagecraft Institute of Las Vegas, the insightful discussion will debate the role of technology in stage productions.

There are dozens of audio networking protocols, most of which are not interoperable, meaning you need specific brands or lots of interfaces to connect them together. Practical Applications for Digital Audio Networking is a seminar created by Bob Vanden Burgt of Link USA to discuss the digital audio networking technology, including what it is, how it works, where it's going in the future, and the obstacles facing the industry.

For producers, camera technicians, and rental house employees, Data Transfer is a must-see. The widespread adoption of memory cards and other media devices for image capture and transfer has brought with it inevitable changes in the way camera technicians, camera rental houses and post houses perform their work. We now live in a world where, when a production returns the camera equipment, they may also be sending the rental house their images, sound and other proprietary data. This raises important new questions about liability, best practice, and deletion. In the face of these questions PERG has taken the lead in assembling a committee of industry experts to come to agreement about how to best protect data assets. In this one-hour discussion our panel will walk participants through the greater implications of using data storage devices.

For pro-audio professionals, Why You Should Never Use a Line Array (or Why You Should) is a non-technical overview of line array theory, plus real world advice on considerations such as size, weight, and design characteristics of modern line arrays. The seminar will explore traditional sound reinforcement scenarios such as theatres, churches, and other small- to medium-sized enclosed spaces.

Alongside the Professional Development Programme is an exhibition of new technology, which is free to attend. PLASA Focus: Austin 2012 is PLASA's inaugural event in North America, which has been designed to shine a spotlight on the thriving entertainment technology community in Texas, and bring world class professional knowledge to the regions exciting lighting designers, sound engineers, production companies, dealers and rental houses.

With over 80 exhibitors, two days of free sessions and free refreshments provided, there's no better place to be this February. Free visitor registration is open now.

Aspiring lighting designers, sound engineers and video designers can also sign up for Focus: Tech, the live event production workshop running alongside PLASA Focus: Austin 2012, at the Renaissance Austin, on 19-22 February 2012. The 3-4 day hands-on workshop offers a limited number of people the chance to design and run a live concert, which will be performed at PLASA Focus: Austin 2012.

(Jim Evans)



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programme free running PLASA Focus: Austin 2012 industry opportunity knowledge PLASA Focus: Austin 2012 Austin City Limits lighting seminar live venue production Austin building discussion technology camera rental houses world sound data PLASA designers

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