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EDUCATION Making the invisible visible The new University of Portsmouth CCI TV studio by Charlie Watts S eptember 2014 will see a brand new communication and televisual experience unleashed for University of Portsmouth students within the newly opened Eldon Building. Catherine Harper, Professor and Dean of the Creative and Cultural Industries (CCI) Faculty, and Gary Bown, Principal lecturer, have both made it their mission to throw the spotlight onto live broadcasting via plans to install a very visible TV studio. Gary is delighted with this decision and states, “Outside broadcast is an often grueling duty, with lots of cable laying, early starts and long hours. We regularly do this sort of event using a student workforce, and there are some events where audiences have no idea who was involved in delivering the event. Although this invisibility might be standard for outside broadcast crews, I think it good for students that they are seen doing this hugely important work. The decision to place this TV studio in a very prominent place will help change things, and very soon we will create something in an environment that will be very noticeable that shows a wide audience exactly how TV programmes are made, and what these students do!”. Professor Harper is also very excited by this new venture and adds, “We all work in a fantastic environment surrounded by industry and research specialists, educators, brilliant support technicians and last but definitely not least, students who want the very best facilities and experiences. Placing a TV studio in a very busy public space will really give a great insight into what goes on behind the camera, as well as in front. Being in the audience of a TV show recording, and watching the completed show on TV, are two vastly different experiences, and this new studio space will really help demonstrate this. The new studio is to be positioned right at the front of the new Eldon building that was officially opened on May 29th 2014 by University of Portsmouth Chancellor Sandi Toksvig. It will be impossible for anybody entering or walking by the building to not notice the studio, and there are very big plans to make this location a vibrant communication hub where live TV interviews and performances can be transmitted all around this very creative faculty. The seed of the idea was first inspired from a visit to BSkyB. Gary visited the broadcast facilities in Osterley, Isleworth, with colleague and course leader Charlie Watts. Gary adds, “my jaw literally dropped when we were escorted around the newsroom. I couldn’t believe we could walk around and see everything as they were working and transmitting live, and I thought it such a bold bit of planning to have it all so What really sealed open. What really sealed our our determination determination to approach our faculty and suggest such a set- to approach our faculty up was made after a visit to the and suggest such a set-up 2014 BVE show. I thought TV- was made after a visit to Bay’s studio set-up at the event the 2014 BVE show was really great. It looked really inviting and it was impossible not to walk past it without stopping to watch whatever was going on”. “ The studio will be assembled in early September and will consist of a System 35 trio frame supplied via Coker Expo in Hook, Hampshire. This gantry system will give flexibility to the whole venture due to the versatility and lightness of the tubes, especially if there is a need to change venue or location at short notice. 44 | TV-BAY MAGAZINE: ISSUE 92 AUGUST 2014 TV-BAY092AUG14.indd 44 08/08/2014 15:28