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Ironworks trainees' showcase CD

By SPP Reporter

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Trainees – from left – George Bone, Christopher Cumming, Peter Junor and Steven Fraser. Pictures: Andrew Smith
Trainees – from left – George Bone, Christopher Cumming, Peter Junor and Steven Fraser. Pictures: Andrew Smith

THE first students on a pioneering new course at the Ironworks will get the chance to run the whole show at Sunday’s Easter Showcase gig.

And in another first, they have also put together a limited edition compilation CD featuring tracks by Sunday’s acts which they will sell on Sunday. The proceeds will go to the Archie Foundation.

All week the seven students will be shadowing roles in the venue from security to sound production with the plan that they will take over to run Sunday’s event.

Ironworks’ co-director Caroline Campbell explained what was new about the Certificate of Work Readiness course they are running at the venue.

"The CWR is for 18 to 24s and covers basic employment skills as well as placements with different companies and experience for careers in things like catering and admin. But this is the first pilot course in Scotland for the creative industries.

The students will spend part of the six-week course on placements with the Ironworks, Eden Court and the HCVF film and video company.

One is working on making a film with multimedia company HCVF, two are at the Ironworks learning about sound production, the other security plus front of house and one of the students interested in acting as a career is combining time at Eden Court with appearing as an extra on the US TV series Outlander, currently being filmed at Newtonmore.

Christopher Cumming (17) from Hilton landed an extras role and has now been called back to do more filming later this month.

He said: "I was cast as a poor boy and will be going back again. I want to get into the acting side of things, so the course has been a really good introduction."

Peter Junor (21), also from Hilton, said: "I didn’t expect it to be this good, I’ve been working with security and I want to do some crew work. I came in to help out when Nazareth and MacFloyd played."

Steven Fraser (20) from Alness is learning about sound production and on the CD project came up with the idea to hand-fold the covers of the CDs which the trainees have done themselves.

PICTURED ABOVE: Front from left – students Christopher Cumming, Peter Junor, George Bone, all Inverness and Steven Fraser, Alness. Back from left: goNorth project manager Alex Smith, Ironworks trainers Caroline Campbell, Dougie Brown and James Roberts. Picture: Andrew Smith

George Bone (18) from Inshes has created the exploding Easter egg design for the CD cover. Interested in photography and film-making, George is working on making a film about a local charity with HCVF.

"I’m spending three days a week there working on interviews for the film and I’d like to end up doing something with film."

The course which was developed with Skills Development Scotland grew from earlier successful courses run by Ironworks across the north of Scotland.

Caroline Campbell said: "With this course, we have tried to make it all very relevant to our industry. Work placements may not be nine to five – for example if you work in sound production you work from 2pm to midnight.

"Iain Hamilton who is head of creative industries for HIE (Highlands and Island Enterprise) came in to talk about the range of organisations involved in the creative industries throughout the Highlands – and most of the trainees were surprised there was so much going on up here.

"Though there will be a report done to measure the results of this course, we hope there will be more. There is a lack of backroom staff around for the creative industries."

Ironworks’ marketing and press manager Dougie Brown added: "That means you have to look further afield to get people trained for those roles and it doesn’t make sense to have to get people up from Glasgow or Edinburgh when there are people up here who want to learn."

The Easter Showcase is on Sunday from 7pm - with an eclectic line-up of musicians and bands:

Schnarff Schnarff, Garden Of Elks, Lionel, Susanna Wolfe, Paul McIver & Lauren MacKenzie, Dylan Tierney, Cryptic Keys and Devil's Queen. B ut earlier in the day, there are both two free workshops, running from 2pm.

A 2pm, Ironworks: Stuart Stenhouse, EmuBands' operations director, will be discussing how to distribute your music to the world's leading digital retailers such as iTunes, Spotify and Amazon MP3. He will also detail how emerging artists can increase sales and maximise their releases on these services. Stuart joined EmuBands whilst at university in 2007. Having developed an extensive and practical knowledge of digital distribution, Stuart has been invited to speak at a number of industry events across the UK and also provides lectures relating to digital distribution at universities and colleges across Scotland. Other experience also includes founding and running an independent record label.

B 2pm, Ironworks: Artist manager and music consultant, Alex Howell, will also deliver an artist development session and be available for 1-2-1 bookings. Alex rose through the ranks as an artist manager, talent buyer and production manager. He has extensive experience across the music industry. Aligned closely with several blue-chip brands, he now specialises in premium brand and music integration campaigns. With a particular interest in digital technology and new music, Alex brings to the table expert knowledge on how new talent can and should be developing audience. Alex also manages Meursault and Vukovi.

If you are interested in going along to either workshop, please email boxoffice@ironworksvenue.com

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