As Idris Elba highlighted in his speech to Parliament, finding and nurturing diverse new talent is a continuing problem for the British TV industry. One of the organisations trying to address this issue is the globally respected Edinburgh International Television Festival, through their two talent schemes, The Network and Ones to Watch.
For the ninth year running, Procam was proud to sponsor The Network and support the Festival in championing the next generation of television production talent. Procam is particularly involved with the more junior of the two schemes, The Network, which helps 50 new entrants kick-start their career in TV, regardless of their background; the only major requirements are that they are over 18 and truly passionate about working in TV. Network delegates spend four days hearing from top industry talent and learning practical programme-making skills, as well as attending big-name master classes and glamorous parties.
As suppliers of broadcast kit and crew, Procam provided cameras and sound equipment to each of the workshop groups, which delegates used to produce their own versions of First Dates, Holby City, and a Sky News broadcast package, as well as their final showcase, The Network Live, which is run like a live TV show. The Procam team was also on hand to pass on their extensive technical knowledge to the Networkers, as Luke Szubert explains:
"Getting to work with and teach a group of enthusiastic delegates as part of the Network Program was a really enriching and rewarding experience. The delegates were enthusiastic, eager to learn and implemented camera and filming techniques that they learned over the two days. From my own perspective it was a really pleasant experience being able to pass on knowledge that I have acquired and developed from my time at Procam to a new generation."
After The Network, delegates are eligible to apply for The Network at Work, a job placement scheme which leads to many alumni finding long-term and permanent industry jobs. Having hands-on experience in a filming environment is great for these new starters to have on their CVs, and the skills they learn from the Procam team are invaluable in these early stages of their career.
"It was such a pleasure to be able to work with the Procam team - the equipment was to a top broadcast standard and was extremely easy to use. Luke was an incredible teacher who let us get on with using the equipment, but was immediately on hand should any technical difficulties arise. I worked as a boom operator on two scenes and his quick tutorial on technique has allowed me to have a better understanding of sound in a quality production."
– Yero Timi-Biu, Network delegate 2015
“Procam is a vital part of what makes The Network tick. For many of those on the scheme, it will be their first experience with professional cameras and I can think of no better introduction, than in the expert hands of Procam. The Procam team really believe in nurturing skills and making the TV industry more diverse, making us natural partners.”
– Campbell Glennie, Director, Talent Schemes, Edinburgh International Television Festival
Applications for The Network 2016 are open now, closing on Monday 4 April. Apply here.