Neve completed her time on the Creative Estuary’s RE:Generation2031 traineeship scheme at The Backstage Centre, and we wanted to take a moment to reflect on the amazing experiences she has had, the range of clients using the building, and where her next steps will take her?
Neve, why did you apply for the RE:Generation2031 traineeship?
After I graduated from University in 2021 I wanted to pursue work within the Film and Tv industry, as it is continuously evolving and seemed to offer many exciting job opportunities. Prior to my degree, I had no production experience, which provided a problem with many entry-level production positions, as you typically needed experience, to gain further experience.
How would this position help you?
When I came across the job posting for Re:Generation 2031 scheme at The Backstage Centre, I was really surprised by all the training opportunities it offered, like counter-weight flying, automated flying and providing the chance to assist with clients involved in productions. The option to learn more about the technical side and equipment also interested me, as I’m always eager to gain further knowledge and learn new skills.
What was your role?
I worked as a Studio and Operations assistant, therefore I, alongside the technical team was responsible for helping with, or handling client requests, while they are hiring the space.
I also have to have a good knowledge of the studios equipment and can confidently answer questions about the studio itself. I think working in a space that caters for so many types of productions, from Film and TV, to theatre and music touring is exciting as you never know what type of production will book the space.
Has there been a particular highlight of your time at The Backstage Centre?
A personal highlight for me was having Sigrid at TBC for her ‘Bad Life’ Music Video. I enjoyed being able to see the progression of the set and the extravagant nature, as it created the illusion of a lake and intermittently included simulated rain. Seeing the actual production to the finished article was amazing, as you realise the tricks and skills that have been put in place to achieve this outcome. With each and every client it’s interesting to see how they transform the space.
Did you have the opportunity to complete work experience or further training?
From the scheme, I received additional funding for training courses I might want to pursue. In University part of my module orientated around documentary filmmaking, where I mainly took on a researcher position, so I wanted to learn more about this role. With the funding, I took a television researcher course run by the Bectu, which I thoroughly enjoyed. It allowed me to learn more about the intricacies of the role and the skills that contribute to it.
Within this traineeship, I have also been lucky enough to be given additional production experience. I acted as a production assistant for a one-day promotional film for Chopp Hair Salon. The position entailed assisting crew and talent, picking up and delivering props and loading out equipment. The experience gave me the opportunity to work on a small set and also made me realise how interchangeable the roles of the crew were, based on the where necessity was at that time.
In the summer months, I was also set up with remote work experience in a research capacity, as a location scout. From my performance during this experience, I also received freelance work. My responsibilities pertained to researching potential filming locations, based on a client brief, mood boards and particular specifications. Before being introduced to this position, I wasn’t aware there was a role specifically for finding filming or campaign locations. This role allowed me to take on more of a challenge and consider additional career opportunities that I might want to pursue.
What next? What are your plans?
This traineeship has helped me consider what my next step in my career is and provided me the opportunity to break into the Film and TV industry. I am looking to pursue new opportunities, within this industry, hopefully in a researcher position or possibly working in a creative department. I believe this traineeship and the additional work experience, set up and strongly encouraged by the director and manager of The Backstage Centre, have helped me tremendously in forming my new career goals while making me very optimistic for the future.
About Re:Generation 2031
Re:Generation 2031 is a Creative Estuary initiative focused on innovative approaches to providing young people in North Kent and South Essex opportunities to gain skills and experience in the creative industries. Our work placement scheme provides the funding and recruitment support for entry-level roles with various cultural and creative organisations, businesses and freelancers based across the Thames Estuary region. These placements are tailored towards young people who have lacked opportunities, who are underrepresented in the sector and who want to explore career opportunities within the creative industries. It is also an opportunity for creative organisations or individuals to increase their capacity and grow their business or practise.