Toby Alington is a finalist in the Studio – Engineer of the Year and Broadcast Audio – Team of the Year categories of the first Pro Sound Awards, which will take place on 19 September at the Ministry of Sound.
“I am hugely honoured to be nominated in two categories, and along with my team we have all our fingers crossed that somehow we can slip past the other fiercely talented finalists to pick up a gong or two,” he said. “My sincere thanks to those who lobbied for me, and congratulations to everyone involved for making this inaugural event a success already with its industry support and high profile.”
Alington’s 30 years’ experience in live music soundtracks is second to none. He has recorded many of the world’s finest performers in every corner of the globe, and has been responsible for the BRIT Awards soundtrack for the last 19 years, the annual MTV Europe Music Awards for 12 years and the Classic BRIT Awards since its inception in 2000.
“I was working at Hyde Park on the BST festival when I got a tweet saying that I was a Studio – Engineer of the Year finalist for the Pro Sound Awards,” said Alington. “In my excitement I didn’t scroll down until later that morning to discover that my 2013 BRIT Awards audio team was also a finalist for Broadcast Audio – Team of the Year. Some members of that BRITs team were working with me at Hyde Park to celebrate the news, and we were delighted considering what a challenge and success this year’s show had been, with the show receiving its largest TV audience since 2003.”
Since September 2012, Alington has been responsible for the live and/or post-produced soundtracks of a collection of releases. “The Studio – Engineer of the Year category is very exciting for me, because it isn’t just about one project but more a reflection of a year of dedication to many wonderful projects,” he said. “The 2012/13 nomination period includes the Classic BRIT Awards, the MTV Europe Music Awards from Frankfurt with over 350 inputs live to air, Emeli Sandé’s much acclaimed Live At the Royal Albert Hall, the James Bond 50th Anniversary Gala Concert from the Royal Festival Hall, my 19th BRIT Awards, Give it Up for Comic Relief for the BBC, and producing and engineering the studio single recording of Dionne Warwick and Joe McElderry’s One World One Song single in support of the The Hunger Project. Some of these were live to air; others involved the luxury of mixing in the safe confines of the studio.
“Whether recorded in a mobile studio, or a studio made of bricks and mortar, these were all amazing projects to work on. The BRITs, Classic BRITs and MTV EMAs let me to work with over twenty of the best artists in the world across different genres, and it’s fair to say those artists have an expectation of sounding perfect, not least with the BRITs mixes going live to iTunes. Having started my career at Olympic Studios under Keith Grant (RIP), where we had an eclectic mix of film and TV scores and rock‘n’roll albums, recording and mixing all 27 Bond themes was simply an engineer’s dream.”
Alington is delighted that DiGiCo and Sennheiser are supporting the Pro Sound Awards. “I have used the DiGiCo D4-equipped Alfacam mobile recording unit on the MTV EMAs for twelve years, and this November’s EMAs in Amsterdam will see me behind this touchscreen DiGiCo once again, a tried-and-tested solution for this complex live-to-air multi-artist show,” he said. “Sennheiser’s radio mics, stage mics and audience mics are always deployed on these big events, and Sennheiser’s Chief Engineer, Andrew Lillywhite, is always on hand at the EMAs, BRITs and others to ensure everything goes smoothly. I also use Sennheiser noise-cancelling headphones in the cockpit of my little plane – simply the best in class.”
Finalists Simon Rhodes, Mark Winterburn and Al O’Connell complete the Studio – Engineer of the Year category, while finalists Conrad Fletcher and the Mixbus audio team, The X Factor sound team and Red TX complete the Broadcast Audio – Team of the Year category.
The Pro Sound Awards ticket price is just £45.00. Contact Sarah Harris for further information.