Is further education necessary for lighting and sound work?

Charlie is wondering if he should stay in school and study.

My name is Charlie and I am 15 and I am looking into doing an apprentice in theatre doing light and sound.

At the moment, I do sound at my school and I help present in my school radio and my local radio.

I’m in my last year at high school. Should I stay on into further education or should I continue into education? If education, what course is better – lighting or sound?

— Charlie Creese


Expert answers

Emrys Green's reply:

​Hi Charlie,

Different routes are better for different people.  It sounds like you’re more interested in sound but you could certainly take a course or apprenticeship that gives you a bit of a mix.  

As an employer of technicians I would be looking for your practical capabilities and experience.  So if you were to go for a college route then I would recommend going for a practical course with plenty of vocational opportunities.

If you are thinking about progressing to a university level qualification then it might help to consider this article available from Drama UK (a site where you can also search for relevant courses): 

Drama UK - Expectations of students starting a university lighting course

For a perspective from a technical theatre apprentice you could also try reading this article on the Arts Award Voice website: 

Arts Award Voice - Apprenticeship overview: Technical theatre

Have a look at both options and definitely have a look at apprenticeships, but you could be limited to what you have around you.

Best of luck!


Stay updated

Sign up for our weekly careers newsletter

View our privacy policy.

Other recent questions