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Swiss students get a helping hand from Yamaha

Mar, 2011

The Swiss government has an excellent record of investment in the future of its population, being possibly the most ‘pro-training’ administration on the European continent. Promoting a wide range of training initiatives for young people, one example of these is the biennial Federal Diploma exam for Sound Technician, which Yamaha supports by providing equipment.

Organised by the Swiss Section of the AES, summer 2011 will see the latest exams take place at the HKB centre in Bern, with Yamaha consoles again much in evidence.

The training courses for the 2009 exams took place at the Centre De Formation Aux Metiers Du Son (CFMS) in Lausanne, for French-speaking students, and at the Schönenwerd-based TTS Tontechnikschule for those speaking German. For the 2011 exams, which are now in preparation, it is likely that candidates will also come from an additional school, Freie Fachschule für Tontechnikin (FFTON) in Zürich.

Yamaha Commercial Audio’s central European office provides mixing consoles for both the courses and exams, including PM5Ds, M7CLs and LS9s.

“We have had an arrangement with Yamaha for several years,” says CFMS director Patrick Roe. “It really helps to get the students up to speed with current technical standards. Yamaha consoles have around a 50% market share of the Swiss pro audio industry, and they will come across them in their professional lives, so we are very grateful for the company’s ongoing support.”

“We always try to offer optimal training conditions for our students,“ adds Beat Gruber from TTS Tontechnikschule. “For each sesson we organise several consoles for a small group. The product range of Yamaha consoles and their being the de-facto standard for so long makes them indispensible.”

The courses cover both live music and theatre, the latter sessions at the CFMS being run by Terry Nelson. These cover all types of theatre, including straight plays, musicals and comedies.

“The main difference that I point out between live music and theatre is that, for the former, the sound system can be considered part of the scenery. It is accepted as a part of the performance by the audience,” says Terry.

“For theatre, unless the action onstage is a concert, the audio system should be unobtrusive and the mix give the impression that there is no sound reinforcement (even when there obviously is). In other words, theatre is more about 'creating the illusion'.”

The versatility of Yamaha digital consoles means that they are ideally suited for all the scenarios that are presented to the students. They are also, as Terry says, good for teaching on in terms of how quickly the students can pick up what they are being shown. Proof of this is provided by many students going on to get jobs in the industry.

“The courses and exams have proved to be a very welcome training for all potential employers in the Swiss audio industry,” says Patrick. “We have 40-50 experts at the exams and lot of students actually get hired when they do the exam. It’s a realistic situation and they see how the students deal with the pressure. I have seen people hired during the coffee breaks, which is great to see.”

“Yamaha’s Jean-Pierre Decollogny here in Switzerland is both a friend and a true professional, with the technical backup being excellent,” adds Terry. “We also have regular contact with the team at Yamaha Central Europe in Germany. The company’s support is much appreciated.”


Products PM5D , M7CL-48ES , LS9-32

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