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Our Industry Week 2018 Highlights

What a fantastic week Industry Week was! We welcomed 69 influential guests from Film, TV, Music and Games who gave our students a week to remember. Timetables were ripped up and replaced with tasters and fantastic insight into the most exciting and competitive creative industries in the world. Have a look through our highlights from the week…do you agree?

Vicky McClure – Made in Notts

BAFTA award-winning actor, Vicky McClure had a great chat with filmmaker Fenn O’Meally about her career, from learning and developing in Nottingham, to discussing the new Action Team series she stars in, which is airing on ITV2.

vicky mcclure - made in notts

So you want to be a Music Promoter? – Justin Turford, Bru-C (Krudd Events), Kath Pryer (Detonate) & Will Robinson (I’m Nott From London)

We had three of the biggest event promoters in Nottingham (and beyond) to share their secrets for putting on the best events. Our students were fascinated hearing stories about behind-the-scenes of some of the most popular events in Notts.

Promoter Panel

Frank Benbini – The Performing and Touring Beast

By the end of Frank’s talk, he was a favourite with our students. The multi-platinum artist revealed what it’s like to be on the record-tour-record cycle, speaking about touring the world and recording with some of the best names in the music industry.

“When you’re waiting from month-to-month for a gig, with no income, that’s when you start to get anxious, so don’t stop, keep yourself active!”

frank benbini

Andy Copping – Putting on the Download Festival

Festival booker and promoter Andy gave great insight into the running of live promotion at its highest level. He spoke about the hugely popular Download festival, his life and promoting live events.

andy copping download festival

Music Expo

Back again after last year’s success, the Music Expo showcased the best manufacturers for our students who were able to chat to, while trying out some of their amazing products. Some of the best names in the business came including Focusrite, Pioneer DJ, Novation, Audient, Synthetic Pro Audio, Synthax Audio and Aston Microphones.

Jack Goode won Novation’s competition and received a Launchpad MkII!

music expo

Games Expo

Nottingham is well known as the world capital of tabletop gaming with a tremendous amount of Games companies setting up in and around the City over the years. This year, for the first time, we showcased this vibrant and exciting industry with a Tabletop Gaming Expo day.

games expo

Conner Turner and Youngman – Songwriting Masterclass

These songwriters/producers taught our students just what it takes to take your songwriting skills to the next level in our brand new Contemporary Music & Live Events Hub. Getting the listeners attention, inviting them into your song and keeping them there for long enough is vital for your song to become “their song”.

youngman and conner turner

VFX Industry Panel – Phil Attfield, Steve Wright & Jason Halverson

Our students heard from some of the best names from visual effects as they gave an insightful talk about breaking into the industry. If you attended this event, you’ll be better prepared to forge out a successful career in VFX after listening to their top tips. VFX artist Steve Skyped us all the way from Denver, Colorado!

vfx panel

Al Clark – A Level Playing Field

It’s not very often you get to hear the secrets of success from Nottingham’s most successful film company. Well, that’s what happened during Industry Week when Al from Wellington Films came and gave a great talk about how the company has been so successful.

al clark - wellington films

Joe Dickens – Gamer Gamer with Imran Yusuf, Inel Tomlinson and David Longley

We were provided a top night of weirdness and gaming fun from a few top comedians to finish Industry Week. Funny was an understatement as our students got involved in this 18+ game show – a retro showdown filled with battles, banter and laughter.

gamer gamer

Confetti Live – #IW18 Closing Party

We ended Industry Week with a bang! Fans of DJs, beatboxing, bands and singers were treated to a mix of incredible local artists including beatboxer Motormouf, and Confetti students Black Cats & Magpies, Clonk! and Holly Taylor Gamble.

confetti live closing party iw18

Want to be part of Industry Week 2018? Find out more about our creative college courses and degree courses and book an open day.

Industry Week 17 – Ellie’s Highlights

industry week 2017

With five days full of acting workshops, lectures and networking events, it’s safe to say that Industry Week 2017 has been a busy one for Acting & Film Production student Ellie Kemp. Let’s hear about her experiences and highlights of the week…

Industry Week started early!

Juggling my duties as a college student while attending Industry Week lectures and reporting on all the action has been pretty hectic, but definitely worth it!

A definite highlight was getting to hear from, and perform for Emmerdale actresses Roxy Shahidi and Sammy Winward, when Industry Week started early for us acting students on Friday 3 March. To hear just how passionate both Roxy and Sammy are about acting, and to learn all about their different paths into acting careers was fascinating, and showed us that there is more than just one direct route into any job role.

Industry Week 2017 Actors Workshop Roxy Sammy Emmerdale

Networking at Nusic’s Academy Workshop

In the middle of the week I took the chance to network with, and hear from some of the biggest names in the radio and music industry at the Nusic Academy. Based at Nottingham Trent Student’s Union, an amazing night was filled with insightful tips, tricks, some talented musicians, and I came away with a lot of connections.

The event gave me the opportunity to push myself out of my comfort zone by talking about my writing and radio work – especially with people who are so successful within the industry!

Industry Week Nusic Workshop

In the audience for Jobs For The Girls?

Jobs For The Girls IW17

Finally, another great Industry Week moment was my last session on Friday – being part of the studio audience at the Notts TV Jobs for the Girls debate. As we’ve been working on multicam productions as one of our modules this term, it was really interesting to sit back and watch the action unfold while being part of a large filmed event.

It was great to hear from the panel guests which included Nottingham musician Harleighblu, and star of screen and stage, Vicky McClure. The debate itself was a discussion as to why we aren’t seeing as many women in the creative industries, what that’s down to, and what can be done to change that. It was uplifting to hear both Harleighblu and Vicky talk so unapologetically about being themselves, and not changing for anyone, both personally, and throughout their time in the creative industries. They’re amazing role models for young girls and women alike – both are successful, hard-working, and have stayed true to themselves.

Jobs For The Girls Vicky Mcclure

Always persevere

The key message I took away from this week – which seemed to be a recurring theme in many of the Industry Week talks – was that perseverance is key. Whether you’re; an actor wanting to find an agent, a musician looking to get your song played on the radio, or even if you’re looking for entry-level jobs into the industry – you need to persevere, no matter how many knock-backs or rejections you receive!

Overall, it’s been a busy and inspiring week – the industry connections made, the opportunities we’ve had and the experience we’ve gained have definitely made it a worthwhile and enjoyable experience.

If you’re interested and think you could help, find out how you can apply here.

Want to be part of Industry Week next year? Find out more about our creative college courses and degree courses.

International Women’s Day

Today is all about celebrating and honouring influential and inspiring women and where better to start than with our very own Industry Week guests!

This week we’ve gathered the most successful names in the creative industries to inspire our students into their careers. Whilst some may say the creative industries are dominated by males, we’ve got some influential female guests to prove otherwise!

Hollie Bennett

Hollie Bennett was still at university when she got involved with gaming blog Destructoid. She was named EU Community Manager for the website, creating European-specific content. Hollie is now the PlayStation Access Channel Manager at Sony Interactive Entertainment Europe and is a leading lady in the games industry.

Ceri Wade

Ceri Wade is Production Manager at Arcadia Spectacular and the focal point for all logistics, operations and productions. Under Ceri’s stewardship, Arcadia were named Live Production of the Year at the TPI Awards in 2013 and again in 2015 where she was the first ever woman to be recognised as Production Manager of the Year.

Mandy Parnell

Mandy is a world-renowned mastering engineer with her own facility – Black Saloon Studios. Working with an array of artists, Mandy has been nominated and won awards across the globe from Grammy, MPG and Tech Awards. Mandy recently won Mastering Engineer of the Year at the Music Producers Guild – MPG.

Jamz Supernova

As one of the leading next generation DJ’s in the UK, Jamz Supernova has passion for her craft in abundance. BBC Radio 1Xtra provided her a platform when she was asked to be part of their development program, ‘Xtra Talent’ and it wasn’t long before they took the unprecedented bold step of offering Jamz three regular shows.

And our list of inspirational women doesn’t stop there. Take a look at our influential female Industry Week guests below.

Sammy Winward

Roxy Shahidi

Katie Goode

Jo Thomas

Kelly Bennaton

Jess Parry

Frances Finn

Alexandra Turcan

Rhianne Murphy

Eleanor Goodman

Kate Holder


Further to our International Women’s Day celebrations, Nottingham Trent University has created a “Wall of Women” made up of inspirational staff and students as nominated by staff.

We popped along to have a look and were thrilled to see lots of Confetti students – FE and HE, past and present mentioned, as well as lots of members of staff. These included in no particular order: Harleighblu, Holly Taylor-Gamble, Victoria Van Garrett, Jodie Rodgers, Miranda Stewart, Hannah Storm, Kim Horton, Sarah Allen, Astrella Hollingsworth, Esme Bowden, Jodie Jarecki, Rowena Brett, Merryn Peachey and Aimee Stones.

We’ll be following the theme until the end of the week with our Notts TV special – JOBS FOR THE GIRLS.

Frances Finn will host a special “Jobs for the Girls” edition of the Notts TV Debate in front of a live audience, celebrating females working in the creative industries. With special guests – Vicky McClure, Barbara Matthews, Ewan Lamont & Harleighblu

You go girls! #IW17 #InternationalWomensDay

#IW17 Deep Silver Day – Wednesday 8 March

Confetti Industry Week Banner

Industry Week starts on Monday and we’ve planned an exciting day for our Games students on Wednesday 8 March – we’ve invited FIVE professionals from Deep Silver to talk all about their experience in the gaming industry. There are still a couple of spaces left on some of their talks so make sure you book your ticket soon!

Ben Parbury

Ben Parbury is a Senior Programmer at Deep Silver Dambuster Studios. He’s spent the last decade working in the games industry on a variety of titles such as the multi-million selling Crysis Series and triple BAFTA winning Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture. Over the years he’s worked in large teams of hundreds of people spread across multiple countries, worked as a contractor both remotely and internally for various companies, as well as independently released his own title on Steam.

Richard Smith

Richard Smith is an award winning 3D digital artist specialising in realistic character production for videogames. Born and raised in Derby, his 12 years in the games industry has kept him close to the local area. He currently leads the Character Art Team at Dambuster Studios in Nottingham where he’s responsible for the final quality of all character art production. Richard has created game characters for projects ranging from Star Wars to James Bond to Dambuster Studios’ most recent release, Homefront: The Revolution.


Tim Donks

Tim is a Technical Designer at Deep Silver Dambuster Studios. Originally from the Netherlands, he started in games industry in early 2008. Since then he has lived in various countries and games where he has gained experience in both game design and programming. In 2014 he decided to move to sunny Nottingham to work for Dambuster Studios. Over the years he has worked on games like Age of Conan, The Secret World, and more recently Homefront: The Revolution.

Twitter: @TimDonks

Alexandra Țurcan

Alexandra Țurcan is the Deep Silver GamesLab Manager at Dambuster Studios. She has a PhD in the psychology of sarcasm (no, really!) and has only joined the games industry one year ago, starting off as a Data Scientist. She quickly realised that the huge amount of available gameplay data should be leveraged to objectively assess player experience. She threw in the mix a few psychological research methods, like eye-tracking and skin conductance, and that is how GamesLab was born – a research lab that marries the rigour of science with the fun of video games, working towards data-driven game development.

Twitter: @AleTurcan

Ruan Pearce-Authers

Ruan Pearce-Authers is the senior online services engineer at Deep Silver Dambuster Studios, where he architects the highly scalable servers that power modern AAA games, comprising everything from internal data processing pipelines to game servers that connect you with your friends. He’s also in charge of technology for the publisher’s user research lab, Deep Silver GamesLab, integrating player biometrics like skin conductance and eye-tracking into gameplay data. Aside from his main specialisation in online development, he also did a stint as a gameplay programmer, focusing on animation and AI.

Twitter: @returnString

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Want to be part of Industry Week next year? Find out more about our creative college courses and degree courses.