Archive for the
‘People’ Category

We are fast approaching this year’s Kartfest, the annual karting day in aid of Backup Tech, The Technical Entertainment Charity.

 

Meet our karting team, Neg Earth, Wind and Fire. A team with grit and determination that plan to put us at the top of the leader board on 7th July.

 

Photo left to right: Fadil Abanur Rigging Technician, Zin Vaitiekunas Warehouse Operative, Josie Richardson HR Advisor, Ciaran Markey Senior Consoles Technician, Abi Roberts Digital Marketing Executive, Jake Williams IT Manager.

 

Join us in cheering for Neg Earth, Wind and Fire!

 

We feel privileged to raise money for such a fabulous charity that supports our industry. Find out more about Kartfest: Kartfest 2022 — Backup (backuptech.uk)

 

Let’s race.

Breaking the bias with Pip Ridgway, Stephanie Smyth, Jasmine Williams and Bernice Roust.

International Women’s Day 2022 challenges us to identify gender bias in all warps of life, from the workplace to schools, communities, colleges, universities and more.

We asked women at Neg Earth their thoughts on working in the live events industry. Touching on their favourite thing about the industry, their biggest challenges and asking for their suggestions on how the industry should improve for women.

 

 

‘We need more male allies,’ meet Pip Ridgway, Managing Director at Neg Earth Lights.

What’s your favourite thing about working in the industry?
Seeing the final result. After months of planning, you’re finally at the show, the house lights go down, you look around and you feel the intoxicating anticipation, excitement, and joy of the crowd.

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve overcome?
Many might assume it would be rebuilding a company after a fire or leading a company through a pandemic. I believe working to be accepted as more than just ‘the girlfriend’ gave me the resilience and sense of purpose needed to overcome fires and pandemics.

What needs to change to improve for women in live music?
We need more male allies; we need the workplace to be more welcoming and we need more women who can give a helping hand to those starting out.

 

 

‘There needs to be more representation,’ meet Jasmine Williams, Project Coordinator at Neg Earth Lights.

What’s your favourite thing about working in the industry?
My favourite thing about working in the industry is the level of creativity involved in designing, planning, and executing a live event. It’s great to be around the interesting people that make it happen and I love seeing an event we’ve done knowing that I helped in some way.

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve overcome?
I think being a young woman especially, it’s difficult to be taken seriously and you do have to end up working twice as hard at times to receive the same recognition. Luckily people are becoming more aware of this, and I have noticed improvements in some environments.

What needs to improve for women in live music?
There needs to be more representation including women of colour and for men to seek out a wider knowledge of how to interact appropriately with women on the job, assuming they know what they’re doing unless asked otherwise for example. I’ve seen women in higher roles recruit other women which is great, and I hope that continues.

 

 

‘More women!’ Meet Bernice Roust, Technician at Neg Earth Lights.

What’s your favourite thing about working in the industry?
It’s Rock and Roll we have a long tradition of work hard play hard.

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve overcome?
There are always challenges, the engineering ones are often difficult, but we always will succeed, other ones will be dealt with as is best possible, someone will provide the support needed.

What needs to improve for women in live music?
More women! We are a little underrepresented, but here at least we are respected. We need women technicians, women crew and more women in the industry all together.

 

 

‘We are not groupies!’ Meet Stephanie Smyth, Inventory Coordinator at Neg Earth Lights.

1) What’s your favourite thing about working in the industry?
Not doing the same thing as everyone else. Being in a niche industry that’s sole purpose is to wow and delight fans.

2) What’s the biggest challenge you’ve overcome?
Realizing that women have a place here and that the men DO want us here as well! Many roles in this industry are manual labour based so it is important to let our teams/ crew know what we are capable of and not confuse intended chivalry with machismo. While calling out machismo-isms when we see them too! When you are pulling your own weight and are a part of the team, this really doesn’t take long.

3) What needs to improve for women in live music?
The perception that a woman backstage is a groupie. (Cue the I time I once caught a group of girls look at me and say, “OMG, look at her, honestly, who brings a spanner to a gig?”)

 

End.

Introducing, Oliver Barker, Technical Solutions Engineer for Neg Earth Lights. Ollie has been with the Neg Earth team for 2 and a half years; we conducted a short interview to find out more.

 

What is your role at Neg Earth Lights?

[Ollie] I assist our business improvement team in researching and adapting technical solutions to improve procedures and workflows throughout our departments. I still get my hands dirty in our lighting department though!

 

What did you do for a job before working at Neg Earth?

[Ollie] I was a senior technician for the Edinburgh University Students’ Association whilst studying and occasionally freelanced in and around Edinburgh.

 

How did you first learn about Neg Earth?

[Ollie] I came across Neg Earth when I was researching who the key players in the lighting industry are and I saw that they were advertising their technical trainee scheme.

 

What is your favourite part about working for Neg Earth?

[Ollie] To know that I am contributing to iconic events that eventually become cherished memories for people around the world is eternally rewarding.

 

What 3 words best describe Neg Earth?

[Ollie] Quality, Consistency, Reliability.

 

How has Neg Earth helped you in career development?

[Ollie] Through the training scheme I’ve been able to gain a wealth of knowledge on sections of the industry that I was yet to encounter. I’m lucky that Neg Earth fosters a culture of continuous learning and mutual support.

 

If you could switch your job with anyone else at Neg Earth, whose job would you want?

[Ollie] Probably a CAD technician – I was pretty good with a drawing board at school!

 

If you had to eat one meal, every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

[Ollie] Tiramisu. A dessert still counts, right?

 

Would you rather be a tiny elephant or a giant hamster and why?

[Ollie] A tiny elephant, despite being tiny they’re still clever, have a trunk and unlike hamsters they don’t have a habit of dying from stress.

 

Which cartoon character would you most like to switch lives with?

[Ollie] Montgomery Burns. Release the hounds.

 

What is your favourite TV series?

[Ollie] Peep Show, followed closely by It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

 

If you were an animal, what would it be?

[Ollie] A Chameleon

 

Name a cause that is close to your heart.

[Ollie] There are many, but I feel ‘Kill The Bill’ is paramount right now. Drastically increasing stop & search powers whilst effectively outlawing public protest is nothing short of a threat to democracy.

 

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self?

[Ollie] Practice your instruments!

 

What is your proudest moment at Neg Earth?

[Ollie] Operating the lights for Sleaford Mods’ support at the Eventim Apollo. It was a great feeling to be back behind a desk in such a well-known venue!

 

What advice do you have for prospective Neg Earth candidates?

[Ollie] Attitude is everything and take every opportunity that you can!

Introducing, Stephanie Smyth, Inventory Coordinator for Neg Earth Lights. Steph has been with the Neg Earth team for 4 years; we conducted a short interview to find out more.

 

What is your role at Neg Earth Lights?

[Steph] As an Inventory Coordinator, it is my role to make sure the inventory system reflects the equipment that Neg Earth owns and the insure it can be easily recorded in and out of the building by the operational departments, keeping availability accurate and everyone happy.

 

What did you do for a job before working at Neg Earth?

[Steph] I worked for Delicate Productions in Southern California for 18 years, from a Moving Light tech to Equipment Sales Rep for new and used lights, sound, and video installations.

 

How did you first learn about Neg Earth?

[Steph] It’s a small industry, people I worked with before toured with previous Neg staff decades ago and kept good working relationships.

 

What is your favourite part about working for Neg Earth?

[Steph] The people. It’s a great team! I have made life-long friends.

 

What 3 words best describe Neg Earth?

[Steph] Quality over corporate.

 

How has Neg Earth helped you in career development?

 [Steph] Neg Earth gave me a home across the Atlantic and the space to keep working in the industry I love and grew up in. From one Rock n’ Roll family to another.

 

If you could switch your job with anyone else at Neg Earth, whose job would you want?

[Steph] The second-floor guard – Eric the dog.

 

If you had to eat one meal, every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

[Steph] Sushi.

 

Would you rather be a tiny elephant or a giant hamster and why?

[Steph] A giant hamster, I would show the rats of Park Royal who is boss!  

 

Which cartoon character would you most like to switch lives with?

[Steph] Tina Belcher – oh to be a teen again…

 

What is your favourite TV series?

[Steph] Ghost Adventures, bro! Also got to love Ancient Aliens, Ancient civilizations + conspiracy theories = perfection.

 

If you were an animal, what would it be?

[Steph] A Manatee, floating around in warm water, just eating all day. Waistline be damned.

 

Name a cause that is close to your heart.

[Steph] I have been a donor on Kiva.org for years and years. Microloans to people all over the world. They pay the money back and it gets turned over to the next person in the next corner of the world. My only requirement is the recipient has a happy smile in their profile.  

 

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self?

[Steph] Save your allowance, get in the property market early.

 

What is your proudest moment at Neg Earth?

[Steph] The Muppets Live. Hearing them rehearse “Mais Non Mais Non,” in the studio, with the warehouse staff involuntarily singing along, was magic! I knew I was with my people.  

 

What advice do you have for prospective Neg Earth candidates?

[Steph] Get ready to get your hands dirty and have fun – and no, you are not allowed anywhere near the band’s dressing rooms! Ever!

 

Meet Fiorenza Fillarini, CAD Technician for Neg Earth Lights. Fiorenza has been with the Neg Earth team for a little under 2 years; we conducted a short interview to find out more.

 

What is your role at Neg Earth Lights?

[Fiorenza] I am a CAD Technician, I make rigging plots, lighting plots and 3D drawings for assembly and bespoke fabrication elements.

 

What did you do for a job before working at Neg Earth?

[Fiorenza] I was working for an architect in central London, where I created projects and managed building sites within the retail sector. Prior to this, I worked for a manufacturing company based in Italy for 3 years, where I worked on projects and quotes and within in a team that developed a software for it.

 

How did you first learn about Neg Earth?

[Fiorenza] Whilst looking for a new role to develop my 3D modelling and problem-solving skills, I fell across Neg Earth on LinkedIn, the job description covered the areas I wanted to develop.   

 

What is your favourite part about working for Neg Earth?

[Fiorenza] I really enjoy interpreting the designer’s ideas and making them a reality; I also like to see my drawings come to life in less than a week (whereas in architecture it would take much longer).

 

What 3 words best describe Neg Earth?

[Fiorenza] Fast, Clean, Cool.

 

How has Neg Earth helped you in career development?

 [Fiorenza] Neg Earth offered a lot of training when I first joined which consisted of learning every department. If I ever need to ask something, everyone is very patient and happy to take the time to explain.

 

If you could switch your job with anyone else at Neg Earth, whose job would you want?

[Fiorenza] A role in Network & Control as they are closer to the result of a production.

 

If you had to eat one meal, every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

[Fiorenza] Pumpkin gnocchi.

 

Would you rather be a tiny elephant or a giant hamster and why?

[Fiorenza] A tiny elephant because it would be handy having proboscis. 

 

Which cartoon character would you most like to switch lives with?

[Fiorenza] Princess Tiabeanie.

 

What is your favourite TV series?

[Fiorenza] At the moment, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.

 

If you were an animal, what would it be?

[Fiorenza] A Cow.

 

Name a cause that is close to your heart.

[Fiorenza] Human Rights. 

 

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self?

[Fiorenza] It’s ok to make mistakes.

 

What is your proudest moment at Neg Earth?

[Fiorenza] When I make a project that makes other people’s work easier.

 

What advice do you have for prospective Neg Earth candidates?

[Fiorenza] Be honest.

 

 

Introducing, Lewis Coles, Moving Lights Technician for Neg Earth Lights. Lewis has been with the Neg Earth team for 3 months; we conducted a short interview to find out more.

What is your role at Neg Earth Lights?

[Lewis] I am a moving lights technician, my responsibilities include preparing and repairing moving light fixtures for jobs, to a high standard.

 

What did you do for a job before working at Neg Earth?

[Lewis] I worked as a crew member for Cancer Research Events, as well as a theatre technician at the University I attended.  

 

How did you first learn about Neg Earth?

[Lewis] I found out about Neg Earth on LinkedIn, I applied for the role not really knowing anything about the company. Since being here, I am so glad I applied!  

 

What is your favourite part about working for Neg Earth?

[Lewis] The people provide a great working environment. I take a lot of pride in my work so understanding the level of detail that our clients expect encourages me to thrive; especially being conscious of the fact I am part of providing such a high level of service.

 

What 3 words best describe Neg Earth?

[Lewis] Proud, Perfectionists, Talented.

 

How has Neg Earth helped you in career development?

[Lewis] Since being part of the team, I realise there are many avenues I can take at Neg Earth. Knowing this has encouraged me to strive for a career within the company.

 

If you could switch your job with anyone else at Neg Earth, whose job would you want?

[Lewis] I love my job. In the future, I would like to become a senior technician so I can teach others all the things I have learnt since starting my role.

 

If you had to eat one meal, every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

[Lewis] That’s tough! Either a nice rich lasagne or a curry.

 

Would you rather be a tiny elephant or a giant hamster and why?

[Lewis] A tiny elephant, I’m a loud and outgoing person and I think it would be funny to imagine the noise that an elephant makes coming out of such a tiny animal. 

 

Which cartoon character would you most like to switch lives with?

[Lewis] Bart Simpson; misbehaving brings a thrill to life.

 

What is your favourite TV series?

[Lewis] The Office US, I can’t count how many times I have seen it.

 

If you were an animal, what would it be?

[Lewis] A Tiger.

 

Name a cause that is close to your heart.

[Lewis] Maybe not a cause as such, but I like to see people happy and bring happiness to others. If I can make someone laugh or smile, I always have a good day. 

 

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self?

[Lewis] Things will get tough, but no matter what, keep going and keep smiling.

 

What is your proudest moment at Neg Earth?

[Lewis] I managed a team of 3 that sorted through the lights returned from Silverstone Lap of Lights. The team and I, in just 3 days, sorted more than 500 fixtures, this was a real achievement for me.

 

What advice do you have for prospective Neg Earth candidates?

[Lewis] Don’t worry about your level of experience, Neg Earth is very accepting of people from all different backgrounds. Never be afraid to ask questions and never give up trying.

 

 

Are you looking for a new challenge in 2022? Do you want to work on the largest events in the UK & Europe?  Neg Earth Lights currently have a plethora of opportunities available to people of all abilities. Kick start your 2022 and apply for a role here.

It was with shock and deep sadness that we heard of the loss of industry legend, Nuri Waheishi. Always a welcome face at Neg Earth Lights over decades supporting the industry, Nuri was a true one-off – always ready to help and to pull out all the stops for a show, he was full of kindness and humour. Nuri, it was an honour, we will miss you.

For the fourth edition of Employee Spotlight we focus on Gillian Rendulic, one of our Crew Coordinators for Neg Earth Lights.

Gillian began her journey at Neg 3 years ago after being convinced by a friend known to the team to apply for a Crew Coordinator role. We conducted a short interview with Gillian to find out more.

 

What is your role at Neg Earth Lights?

[Gillian] Crew Coordinator, I sort out all things crew from assigning technicians to tours, to finding new talent and making sure they have all the paperwork necessary.

 

What did you do for a job before working at Neg Earth?

[Gillian] I worked at a Live Music Agency as an agent assistant.

 

How did you first learn about Neg Earth?

[Gillian] I was looking for a role on the touring side of the industry and I saw Neg was recruiting. I didn’t know much about this side of the industry. A friend of mine worked with Neg and she convinced me to apply. The role was a perfect fit.

 

What is your favourite part about working for Neg Earth?

[Gillian] Everyday can bring new challenges and its all about problem solving. I love music, especially live music. Its so exciting being a small part of the most exciting shows in the world and working with like-minded people. We do some amazing stuff.

 

What 3 words best describe Neg Earth?

[Gillian] Moxie, Fun and Passionate.  

 

How has Neg Earth helped you in your career development?

[Gillian] Neg has helped in all sorts of ways; we are always encouraged to learn and evolve. They’ve provided support through a variety of training, from courses which have helped me to apply my initiative and develop my problem solving, to the abundance of knowledge throughout the team (which they are always willing to share) about live events and what it takes to deliver them.

 

If you could switch your job with anyone else at Neg Earth, whose job would you want?

[Gillian] Anyone in the warehouse! They make things happen and have the technical skills I don’t possess.

 

What has been your favourite project at Neg Earth Lights?

[Gillian] That’s not hard for me. Rammstein, the stage and crew are mind blowing. It was even more incredible to see the show, it’s very special to me. The Rolling Stones started my love for music, so working on their productions is also a highlight and WWE Crown Jewel because of the sheer planning that goes into that event to make it happen.

 

 

If you had to eat one meal, every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

[Gillian] Anything pasta related, or my mom’s apple pie – it’s amazing.

 

Would you rather be a tiny elephant or a giant hamster and why?

[Jasmine] Definitely a tiny elephant. Maybe it’s because I am from South Africa, they are just incredible animals.

 

Which cartoon character would you most like to switch lives with?

[Gillian] Batman from the original Batman series, or Naruto.  

 

What is your favourite TV series?

[Gillian] At the moment, Ted Lasso, but X-Files for an all-time favourite.  

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If you were an animal, what would it be?

[Gillian] My Dog Reaper, I know how spoilt he is.

 

Name a cause that is close to your heart.

[Gillian] Human Rights; we need to be more compassionate towards each other. Also, Music rights ownership.

 

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self?

[Gillian] To stay true to yourself.

 

What is your proudest moment at Neg Earth?

[Gillian] Pretty sure I signed an NDA for that.

 

What advice do you have for prospective Neg Earth candidates?

[Gillian] We work as a team and want to do the very best for our clients. We work hard, but it’s rewarding.  

 

 

 

 

Introducing, Jasmine Williams, the focus of the third edition of Employee Spotlight. Learn about Jasmine and what makes her an integral part of the Neg Earth Lights team.

 

Starting her journey with Neg Earth 2 years ago after volunteering in lighting departments for festivals, Jasmine is now a Project Coordinator for the company. We conducted a short interview with Jasmine to find out more.

 

What is your role at Neg Earth Lights?

[Jasmine] Since starting in the projects office I’m now arranging dry and sub hires as well as supporting the team with interpreting technical drawings, and inputting equipment data as lists onto the system.

 

What did you do for a job before working at Neg Earth?

[Jasmine] Before Neg Earth, I was volunteering in the lighting departments of a few festivals and working in a smaller lighting warehouse.  

 

How did you first learn about Neg Earth Lights?

[Jasmine] One of my peers at university joined as a CAD Technician and advised me to get work experience at Neg Earth, which I did, and I never left!

 

What is your favourite part about working for Neg Earth?

[Jasmine] The little relationships you make with people here, I feel like I am part of something big and exciting.

 

What 3 words best describe Neg Earth Lights?

[Jasmine] Ambitious, innovative, and exciting.

 

How has Neg Earth Helped you in career development?

[Jasmine] Neg has taught me about the whole process of an event which really helps to identify where I am at within a project and what I need to keep an eye out for. This has enabled me to push forward and after starting on the NELL Scheme, I am now working in the projects office where I feel positively challenged and invested in my career. 

 

If you could switch your job with anyone else at Neg Earth, whose job would you want?

[Jasmine] Good question! I would like to try life as a CAD Technician if it meant swapping came with all that knowledge too!

 

What has been your favourite project at Neg Earth Lights?

[Jasmine] It was before I joined, but I am a huge fan of Beyoncé and Neg Earth supplied the lights for her tour. I haven’t been involved in too many projects due to Covid, but I hope I can one day work on Beyoncé’s lighting…  

 

If you had to eat one meal, every day for the rest of your life, what would it be?

[Jasmine] Curry goat or spaghetti bolognaise, I can’t choose!

 

Would you rather be a tiny elephant or a giant hamster and why?

[Jasmine] A tiny elephant because that’s much cuter!

 

Which cartoon character would you most like to switch lives with?

[Jasmine] Moana, what a location!

 

What is your favourite TV series?

[Jasmine] Misfits

 

If you were an animal, what would it be?

[Jasmine] A cat.

 

Name a cause that is close to your heart.

[Jasmine] Black Lives Matter and the eradication of systemic racism (huge mission I know).

 

What advice would you give your 10-year-old self?

[Jasmine] You belong in every space you choose to enter.

 

What is your proudest moment at Neg Earth?

[Jasmine] Working on Coldplay’s Graham Norton appearance, it felt current and creative, plus it felt great to contribute to the performance of such a well known and loved band.

 

What advice do you have for prospective Neg Earth candidates?

[Jasmine] Be yourself, be honest and make the most of every bit of knowledge Neg Earth offers (don’t forget to take notes because it’s a hell of a lot).