Our People - Liam Bremer on the latest event trends
“Being Head of Production and leading a department is very different to my previous role as a Production Manager. A big part of my role is acting as a bridge between departments, and ensuring the production department is works cohesively with, and supports other departments effectively.
The best thing about my job is being able to help people in my team develop their skills and work towards their goals. This can be identifying areas that they find challenging and working on them together or looking at where they want to be in their career and building a plan to achieve that. Seeing the results of this part of my work is very rewarding.
Most of my favourite career moments have been with Broadsword, and it has always been the fantastic team on a project that has made it enjoyable. Prior to the pandemic I really enjoyed the challenge of delivering large scale, complex work in Asia and the US.
I feel like the biggest achievement, both personally, and for us as an organisation, has been taking our existing skills and knowledge and finding way to apply them to virtual and hybrid events during the pandemic. I’ve very proud of the way we dealt with such uncertainty as well as huge technical challenges in this period; some of the work we delivered was, and continues to be, exceptional.
How did you get into the industry?
As a young man I was very into music and technology. I spent a number of years doing a mix of badly paid bar work, and sound engineering for bands for which the pay was even worse! I moved to London in 2008 with the aim of one last push to be a professional sound engineer, but soon fell into corporate audio-visual. I quickly progressed to managing production at some prestigious venues and haven’t really looked back.
What trends should we be looking out for in 2023?
My feeling is that we will continue to live with economic and political uncertainty for a period, which will impact the industry. Event organisers will value agile, flexible partners who help them find solutions to difficult problems. Production focused companies will need to continue to be able to react to changing circumstances and should invest in building knowledge of technology in their teams to allow them to offer the fullest range of solutions to clients when needed.
What is an important aspect of producing a successful event?
More often than not the information that is communicated at an event is not hugely complex. We are seeking to maximise the impact of that information, so it can be absorbed and used by the audience. A big part of this is removing barriers, making sure the message is clear to everyone in the audience, but we really get to shine when we use the spectacular to grab the audience’s attention and hammer the message home. I love watching the reaction of the audience when something they have never seen before is revealed!
What drives your creativity?
Most of my best ideas are shamelessly stolen from somewhere! I look at production for music, theatre, and television and if I see something interesting think about how it could be applied to our work. I’ve borrowed ideas for lighting from Glastonbury, and stage sets from Beyonce. Lately I’ve been thinking about whether the TV show Dance Monsters, which uses CGI avatars, has any useful applications for our hybrid events.
My very rare original ideas usually pop into my head while running or cycling. A change of scene is usually a good place to start if you need to come up with an idea. I’m also very keen on Brian Eno’s oblique strategies as a method for sparking creative thought.”