One of the prime motivators for me to actually consider a Blog was recognizing that I had some valuable insight to share from my years of experience on location. In my world, we are “on location”, not “on set” as in the film world. From this point on when I say “on location” know that I mean “in the field, pretty much on your own away from all your lifelines and your proverbial (and literal) bag of tricks back at the office”. I run an exceptionally tight crew: small in number, high in cross training. Sometimes I’m the only one there. There isn’t a lot of “back up” if things go wrong so proper planning is key to a successful event.
In this series, I want to share some experiences and wisdom gained from a life on the road and in the trenches… the seldom glamourous, sometimes gory details of what it takes to make it through a live event with A/V support.
To be clear: I’m a video guy first and foremost. I’m also a webcaster. But I’ve always taken a holistic approach to event planning from the A/V perspective: I understand my needs both technically and logistically. It is important to me that I know how you envision the event going down. I liaise with the house/facility folks to make sure we are all on the same page. I speak the same language as the Front of House (FoH) audio tech, the stage manager, the lighting crew, the A/V riggers, the staging company…
The series will include such mind-numbingly fascinating topics as:
Shaun’s First Rule of Successful Event Planning
Involve your technicians early. I can plan around almost any client request, as long as I know it is coming. You know that conversation you had in the hallway on the way into the room with the hotel banquet manager that I wasn’t privy to? You folks may have agreed to something that involves my crew to make it happen “on the day”. Did anyone think to tell us about it?
I will try to make this a regular feature with both some solid “take aways” based on actual experiences, some fun anecdotes and some practical advice from your often overlooked event day partners: the A/V department.
It will be a FRANK discussion, sometimes possibly uncomfortably so as we openly discuss what a successful event looks like from where I sit behind a stack of black boxes with blinking lights and a whole bunch of switches and dials.
Cry ‘Havoc,’ and let slip the Road Dogs of war…