Sound design and music production facility, String and Tins, has announced the launch of the second iteration of its female-led programme No Fixed Mix.

Aiming to improve the gender balance in technical sound roles, the music company will conduct a series of workshops, arming participants with tips, tools and resources to help them pursue a career in sound.

The inaugural programme of No Fixed Mix, held in 2019, welcomed five aspiring sound engineers into String and Tins’ studios. Created by String and Tins’ Audio Post Production Manager Eimear Ní Ghuaire, the programme included three workshops that focused on the audio industry – production, sound design and music – and was aimed at any woman seeking a career in sound design.

This year, String and Tins is expanding the programme to reflect the growing variety of projects that the studio is working on, incorporating foley, field recording and longform into the updated course curriculum. In addition to this, an extended list of assignments will be available, in order to help participants develop their showreels, as well as a wider variety of lecturers/hosts.

Mike Bamford, Co-Founder of String and Tins says: “No Fixed Mix’s inaugural programme was a bigger success than we could have hoped for and the response to our call out for applicants was huge – it just shows that it’s not just men who want to apply for these roles and pursue these careers. We held three workshops on the industry, sound design and music which helped candidates develop pieces for their showreel. Since then many of these women have gone on to find jobs in their preferred sound-related fields. This can be accredited purely to their own efforts, but we hope that our programme has given them some insights which have been useful in getting their foot in the door in the industry.”

Eimear Ní Ghuaire, Audio Post Production Manager, String and Tins comments: “As far as I’m concerned, 2021 will be the embodiment of ‘onwards and upwards’ and we’re hoping that No Fixed Mix will help bring a little extra light in the coming months as we move into brighter times. I have no intention of being a programme in ‘unprecedented times’, we come as we are, Zoom or no Zoom, pandemic or none, we must strive for equality across all platforms, under all circumstances.”

In order to apply for this year’s programme, interested female or non-binary applicants must be of at least 18 years of age and are required to email their single-page CV along with a single piece of sound work that they have created to the email, nfm@stringandtins.com. The work submitted can consist of audio only sound design, a collage of interesting field recordings, sound design to a picture, or a piece of music with unusual instrumentation that should last between 10 seconds to 1 minute in duration.

Backed by Avid, HHB and iZotope, successful participants will be provided with a free 12 months subscription licence to Pro Tools, the industry standard DAW (worth £299) and iZotope Stutteredit 2 (worth £171) so that they can continue to develop their audio post-production skills.

The deadline for applications for No Fixed Mix is midnight on March 21st, 2021.

Jon Creamer