The Recording Connection Audio Institute in Los Angeles partnered with Web series Pensado’s Place to offer full-ride scholarships for training in professional recording studios. Winners receive the full benefits of the Recording Connection program: hands-on training by a respected audio engineer or music producer in partnership with a curriculum-backed instruction, along with free tutoring and job assistance services.
To enter, applicants had to send in a short essay explaining why they deserved to win and move forward with their careers. Pensado’s Place hosts Dave Pensado and Herb Trawick announced the contest winners over several episodes of the series in 2014.
Award recipient Brian Zadel, an aspiring EDM producer, says, “I didn't have to pay anything to enter, and one day I was watching the show and they announced my name.” Shortly after receiving the scholarship, Zadel was placed with music composer and engineer Dick Orr at John Wagner Studios, located in Albuquerque, New Mexico. “I know by the end of the program, I'm going to have a vast amount of knowledge that I didn't have, not even a year ago,” Zadel says. “I’m just glad to be a little lucky, and I'm glad I took that chance.”
Scholarship recipient Dani Munoz was placed with Hal Batt of Afterhours Music in Miami. Since then, Munoz has worked as the front-of-house sound engineer for Flo Rida’s European tour, produced Tien, and will work as FOH engineer for the band Magic!. “The fact that you connect with somebody that’s working, the fact that you connect with somebody that’s in it—that, to me, is the way to go,” Munoz says of the scholarship opportunity.
“One of the greatest pleasures Herb and I have is the opportunity to educate,” says Pensado. “The fact that we can partner with organizations like Recording Connection, offer Pensado’s Place Scholarships, and then watch the recipient grow and succeed, makes it all worthwhile.”