SPARS, the Society of Professional Audio Recording Services, has worked diligently during the past few years to heighten its profile as a national networking and educational organization. In addition to our national efforts, we are also constantly working to provide hands-on training, informational events and networking opportunities for our major-market members. Each quarter, it is our goal to be involved in at least one event in each of the three major markets: New York, Los Angeles and Nashville. In the past year, we have hosted (with other industry organizations, manufacturers, service providers and financial providers) luncheons, mixers and other events in each of these cities.
In Los Angeles, SPARS facilitated luncheons with both Solid State Logic regarding the release of the console manufacturer's latest console technology, as well as with All Media Capital regarding the current options for equipment financing. Both proved themselves informative sessions and were much appreciated by that area's membership. We are currently planning a luncheon for later in the year with Dolby regarding its latest technology and demonstrations of such. In addition, SPARS works with the Mix Foundation to support the Mix L.A. Open Golf Tournament and this year co-hosted a team of players, donated a year's membership to the silent auction and a few items for the player's goodie bags. SPARS is also working closely with the executive director of The Producers & Engineer's Wing of The Recording Academy, Maureen Droney, to build a lasting beneficial relationship between the two organizations. In December 2005, a Refreshment Room was jointly sponsored by SPARS and the P&E Wing during the Surround Conference. We hope to plan more events with the P&E Wing this fall at AES in San Francisco.
In Nashville, SPARS has become involved with several local industry organizations to better serve that recording community. In the past months, SPARS hosted a hole at the Nashville Audio Masters Golf Tournament and has plans to co-host a hands-on informative session in late June, which will discuss the benefit of pro recording and the signal flow of audio for recording, with GCPro and several local manufacturers involved, along with NAPRS (Nashville Association of Professional Recording Services). In addition, SPARS will host a luncheon with financial planning experts on equipment financing and budgeting/planning for facility expansion/changes later this fall.
Several events have been hosted in the New York area to showcase the latest gear technology with the following co-hosts: Dale Pro Audio, JBL, Aviom, Tekserve, SSL and GCPro. We also strive to provide networking opportunities for the New York membership via after-hours mixers to get together to discuss the industry in general and sometimes in specific, allowing members to pick each other's brains and bounce ideas off one another and, most importantly, to discuss future goals of the organization on a local and national level.
We are proud of the relationships we have built, maintained and the new relationships and associations we will continue to nurture as an organization dedicated to serving the professionals in our industry. SPARS welcomes all suggestions on how we can continue to grow and perfect our agenda and goals. Please feel free to contact our national office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 800/771-7727, or online at www.spars.com.
Marcia Kautz is SPARS' executive director.
[Eds. note: In the June issue, we inaccurately attributed the story “NARAS Notes” to the opinions of NARAS (The Recording Academy) and its Producers & Engineers Wing. This article was not an official statement from The Recording Academy or its P&E Wing; it is the opinion of an industry veteran who also is a member of the P&E Wing.]