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Yamaha M7CL helps Kendal students to graduate in mint condition

Mar, 2010

For further education colleges which offer courses covering the technical production aspects of live music and theatre, it’s crucial that student training is done on industry standard equipment which graduates will find in the ‘real world’ after their studies. For this reason, Kendal College has just invested in a Yamaha M7CL digital mixing console.

More famed for its mint cake and being the eastern gateway to England’s popular Lake District, over the past few decades the Cumbrian town of Kendal has rapidly become a hotbed for the performing arts, thanks to its further education college.

Kendal College’s Music, Performing Arts and Technical Theatre programmes work closely together to provide an unparalleled resource for students who are seeking careers both on stage and behind the scenes. Combining academic tuition with real productions in real venues, the provision of up-to-date equipment makes the courses as relevant as possible.

“I’m familiar with the Yamaha 01V and 02R so, when we were looking for a new console, Yamaha came immediately to mind,” says lecturer Paul Satterthwaite. “I did look at other manufacturers, but I kept coming back to Yamaha’s track record and the legendary reliability of their consoles.

“I then went to a training day at their Milton Keynes HQ, tried the M7CL, and knew it was exactly what we needed. As soon as I tried it, that was it - there was no other choice.”

The M7CL’s combination of cutting-edge facilities and friendly user-interface were prime factors in Paul’s decision, but there were also other factors which made it the ideal solution. Education is well known for having continual budgetary restraints, so the console’s cost-effective price meant that it came at a cost where there would be no need to sacrifice other technical purchases.

“Another advantage was the large screen,” says Paul. “It’s easily visible to a group of students stood round the desk, but we also blow the display up on to a big screen so a room full of people can see it.”

Using Yamaha Studio Manager software students also programme the console offline, and the analogue-friendly interface of both console and software means that everyone can set it up quickly.

“The students are more familiar with digital technology, for the younger ones it’s all they’ve ever really known,” says Paul. “But the way the M7CL’s operating surface is arranged, the older members of staff more used to analogue consoles can also programme it quickly and easily.”

Regularly taken to work on shows outwith the college, the M7CL has made many new friends very quickly.

“We use it as commercial piece of kit, it will get flightcased up several times per year and taken out to do productions in 400-500 capacity venues, where we charge £5-£6 per ticket. It’s genuine, real-world training,” says Paul. “I could never be certain about the reliability of other consoles, but I knew I could rely on Yamaha. It’s been absolutely rock solid.”

“The sound is fantastic and the students have taken to it like ducks to water - everybody’s in love with it. I can’t recommend it highly enough.”


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