Proud of Our Graduates: Jesse McMullen

Posted on February 20th, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

Actors and directors who have graduated from Film and TV school dream of walking the red carpet at prestigious events like the Cannes Film Festival – however, not everyone gets the chance. This week, we’d like to introduce Entertainment Management school grad Jesse McMullen, who has ventured the business world of Toronto and also the red carpet at Cannes as a Distribution and Acquisition Assistant. While nearing graduation at Trebas, Jesse went on a once-in-a-lifetime journey to France to work with Breakthrough Entertainment and gain experience in the business world of film and television.

Jesse McMullen

His Experience at Trebas

Jesse graduated from Trebas’ Entertainment Management program in 2014. During his time at Trebas, Jesse learned the ins and outs of copywriting and international licencing. The Contracts class he took with Trevor Shelton gave him the knowledge he needed to navigate industry and legal terms. The grant writing skills he learned at Trebas have also helped him submit grants for upcoming movies at his current internship. It was through Trebas that Jesse also got wind of the opportunity to intern at the Cannes Film Festival.

At Cannes

In 2013, Jesse attended a talk at Trebas by Michael Brener, about an opportunity to attend Cannes as a business intern. Of course, Jesse applied right away, and was accepted only a few weeks later along with two other students from Trebas.

At Cannes, Jesse was assigned to work with Toronto-based production/distribution company Breakthrough Entertainment. There, he walked the red carpet for premieres such as David Cronenberg’s Maps to The Stars, and Grace of Monaco starring Nicole Kidman. On his second day in France, he was introduced to VP of Breakthrough Entertainment, Tim Brown. After a successful week of meetings, sales pitches and screenings, Jesse’s Cannes trip was coming to a promising end. He asked Tim Brown about the prospects of continuing to work for the company back in Toronto, and Tim put Jesse in contact with Nat Abraham, President of Breakthrough. Arriving back in Toronto, Jesse lined up an interview with Nat Abraham, and eventually secured himself an internship with the company.

Jesse McMullen2

Current Projects

After finishing his internship through Trebas, Jesse continued his work at Breakthrough, earning a contract position. A thriving company, Breakthrough is currently working on releasing several television and film productions. While there, Jesse has the opportunity to read scripts, watch screeners (advanced copies of finished films) and give his input on titles that Breakthrough may possibly choose to pick up to sell or produce. Lately, Jesse has been busy with things like TIFF, AFM (American Film Market), EFM (European Film Market) and NATPE (National Association of Television Program Executives). When his contract ended in December of 2014, he was granted an extension that lasts until June 2015. He’s hoping that at this end of this contract, he’ll be picked up as a full-time employee at Breakthrough Entertainment.

We at Trebas are proud of Jesse and his achievements in the entertainment business world—and wish him good luck in his long future ahead!

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Grammy Awards: Production and Sound Behind the Scenes

Posted on February 13th, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

Grammy awards music business administration training

Did you catch the Grammys last Sunday? If so, what did you notice and what do you remember? Was it a particular performance? Price presenting? Kanye being Kanye? One thing you may have not actively noticed but you most certainly did see and hear was the hard work put in by a team of sound and TV production professionals behind the scenes.

The Grammy Awards are an annual event where some of the industry’s best and brightest really put their audio engineering classes and film and TV school experience to good use. Seeing as the Grammys have been at the Staples Center in Los Angeles since 2004, the team knows the terrain. As a group, they know what it takes to make this show work.

Sound is King

Seeing as the Grammys are all about music and live musical performances, it’s important that “Music’s Biggest Night” sounds great. To ensure this happens, the Grammy team has two 5.1 channel sound production trucks parked right behind the Staples Centre for live mixing and a third Pro Tools truck that adds pre-recorded tracks into the mix.

While music business administration training usually gets you a spot at a fancy networking event, at the Grammys it can also get you a spot in a sound truck. During rehearsals, artist reps sit in the first mixing truck and listen. When the next act is on stage, they move to the second truck and help the engineers tweak the levels which will be used in the live show.

The Grammy sound production is thorough to the point where the team includes people who aren’t even close to the Staples Centre or even in California. While the sound that gets sent directly to the satellite may be perfect, there’s always a chance that something will go wrong as it gets bounced around from broadcast centers to local CBS affiliates to people’s homes. That’s why there are people across the US watching and more importantly listening to the broadcast through top notch home theatre sound systems and reporting any issues the end user experiences back to the sound team instantly.

Production Tailored to the Performers

Musicians pride themselves on the uniqueness of their performances. The Grammys is set up to allow that uniqueness to shine. Here’s how:

  • Unique Mics: Whether they bring their mics in themselves or have them provided by the awards, each performer uses a unique microphone, which means each mic has a unique frequency that production people need to include in the mix when necessary. So that there aren’t hundreds of signals bouncing around at the same time, mics are kept in metal containers when not being used.
  • Unique Risers: Performers and bands each have a riser where all of their equipment (drum kits, other instruments, etc.) is stored. When it’s time for their performance, crew members wheel their riser up to one of two stages which are hidden from audience view when not being used.
  • Unique Backup Gear: There is an office in the Staples Center that gets converted every year into  a storage area for replacement gear like instruments. Each artist has personalized replacement gear so they won’t have to use something different if something goes wrong.


Could you see yourself working on the Grammys?

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Winter 2015: Trebas Institute’s Career Services Workshop Calendar

Posted on February 12th, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Institute

école de film Trebas MontréalTrebas students, mark it down on your calendars: on February 17th, our Career Services workshops are back! After two years of presenting practical workshops, we are pleased that our graduates and students are reporting greater success in entering the labor market. The positions these students fill are of higher quality and greater relevance to their career aspirations.

As Canada’s leading sound school, Trebas Institute is committed to supporting student success from the very first day of class. Whether you’re pursuing music business administration training or honing your DJ skills, Trebas Career Services will help you develop the self-presentation, job search, and interview techniques needed to land that dream job. Check out some the topics our workshops will cover during the winter semester:

Networking and the Hidden Market

On February 17, we’ll delve into the undeniable importance of networking for breaking into the industry and growing in your chosen field. During this workshop students will learn how to build a network and leverage contacts to find rewarding positions in the field of entertainment.
To be held on March 12, the Hidden Market workshop continues to explore the theme of networking to discuss how students can find links to jobs via “unofficial” channels – like through friends, acquaintances, fellow graduates of recording school, and other members of their extended networks. The workshops will help students understand how the Hidden Market operates, and provide strategies for seeking out job opportunities.
Other important topics we’ll focus on include leveraging LinkedIn during the job search, and industry best practices in resume and cover letter writing. And to really seal the deal, a mock-interview workshop will help students develop the confidence they need to present themselves persuasively in the marketplace.

Freelancing and Contracts: Guidance for the Entrepreneur

After graduation, securing a job with a particular employer is not the only way to find success on the labor market. Although self-employment can be rewarding on both a professional and personal level, few graduates recognize the many advantages of becoming a freelancer in the entertainment business.
With this is mind, Trebas has included a “Freelancing and Contracting” workshop in our calendar for the upcoming semester. The workshop will be held on April 23 and will provide a range of information and advice to help students understand the concept of freelancing, and the technical details of taxation, billing and contracts.

Here are all the dates and workshops planned for this semester:

Calendar of workshops presented in English

Winter 2015 english presentations calendar

Calendar of workshops presented in French

Hiver 2015 ateliers en francais

Have a Question? Contact Josée

JoseeAlways there to help and support Trebas students and graduates, Josée Daigneault is your point of contact at Career Services.

If you have questions or need clarification regarding the workshops, Josée can be reached by phone at 514-845-4141 (ext. 27) or by email:

Do not hesitate to contact her if you have questions or need help. She also offers workshops on request, if your schedule can not accommodate the official calendar. Just gather a minimum of three Trebas friends to join you, and contact Josée with your request.


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How to Use the Web to Market a Band You Manage

Posted on January 2nd, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

We live in a post-myspace world.  The internet has advanced so drastically and so abruptly that as of press time, this very article might well be irrelevant!  Facebook, Twitter and other trending social media outlets have made marketing a band to music-crazed audiences more accessible than ever.  Gone are the days of the lowly band manager hocking cassette tapes and CDs in the back of a van outside of a club show.


Your band has the ultimate platform readily available – now you’re responsible for making them look good.  There are no photo shoot bookings, instead a decent Instagram shot can broadcast your band’s brand to millions worldwide.  Here are some ways to help market the boys or girls as well as a few pitfalls to avoid.

Make it Personal

If you’re in charge of marketing a band, be sure to get to know them beyond what instruments they play or what they like for lunch.  If this is your first gig after graduating from music producer school, it’s likely you already know the members pretty well.  Allowing each relationship to flourish accordingly will not only help create a killer website, the bands under your roster will appreciate the extra effort.

Making it somewhat personal to you will also aide you in developing a marketing strategy.  If you have special musical knowledge from an audio production college or a DJ school, be sure and apply it.  It will help foster trust, confidence and a personal relationship with each band you manage.

Keep It Simple

Part of the rugged charm that permeated the old days of rock legends like Hendrix and The Who, and carried on well past Springsteen, still exists in the DIY nature of the internet.  The same kind of irritation fans once called “selling out” or “going corporate” can be ascribed to a shot of your band that looks too perfect, too airbrushed, or too polished to be pure.  For if the soul of rock and roll has taught us anything, it’s that The Man controls the fancier features of photoshop. Imperfections are what adds soul.

Or perhaps the band has a softer indie tone to their music.  One doesn’t have to go too far to get a black and white photo of an acoustic guitar, though the trick may be finding a truly unique image in the same familiar backdrop.  Either way, one thing internet fans have taught marketers is to abandon such former website staples as Flash.   No one wants to deal with swoopy animations that stand in the way of content.  Let the music be the message.

Build a Strong Front Page

Simplicity is key.  Being artful has no place in website page navigation.  A small but arresting bio of the band, as well as a decent picture is all that is required here.  Do not overload visitors with more than one concept per page.  Suddenly being lost in a maze of photo galleries, tour dates and track listings will no doubt result in a diminished rate of return viewers.

Keep it Updated

Nothing dissuades a visitor from returning to your band’s page more than outdated information.  Facebook will also prove handy here, as each update can be linked accordingly.  The updates don’t have to be limited to earth-shattering news.  Merely a new photo, tour date, blog post or acoustic demo release calls for reason to spread the news.

These are just a few ways to help market a band online.

What would you add to this list?       

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Proud of our Students: EVM Student Jessica Robyn Getting Wrapped Up in Her Internship!

Posted on December 5th, 2014 - Written by: Trebas Toronto


Event and Venue Management student Jessica Robyn is getting all wrapped up in her Internship at the CNIB (Canadian National Institute for the Blind). The passionate student has been busier than most elves these days contributing to getting the CNIB Holiday Wrapping stations set up at Fairview Mall and Pickering Town Centre. This year over 100 volunteers will be lending a hand to wrap gifts for shoppers. Volunteers are provided with a full orientation, including an overview of the CNIB, the people the organization helps, and important background information about vision loss. We are so proud of this Trebas student go-getter and we believe all her work experience with non-profit organizations has gotten her this far and will continue to provide her with success in the future!

An added touch to the wrapping station is a gift tag that shows the person’s name in Braille. Jessica notes, “This added feature enhances awareness for people about the CNIB.” While gift wrapping takes place, most shoppers will stand by to watch the volunteers’ impressive wrapping abilities, but also to ask questions about the CNIB programs and services. “It’s amazing to see so many people really interested in the CNIB.”

Changing lives, one gift-wrap at a time

Trebas1234555This year’s gift-wrap campaign is just one of several initiatives the CNIB pursues each year to generate funds and raise awareness for their programs. Committed to helping families and communties “see beyond vision loss,” the CNIB’s mission is to provide Canadians who are blind or partially sighted with the confidence, skills and opportunities to fully participate in life. The organization provides a full range of support, including rehabilitation programs, assistive technologies, and Canada’s largest library of accessible materials for people with print disabilities.

Their website also offeres education on common eye conditions so individuals and families can better understand the real facts of vision loss – and find empowering ways to push past barriers to full participation. The CNIB welcomes volunteers from all backgrounds, and Trebas encourages all students to get involved! So whether you’re taking audio courses, music business administration training, or event management training like Jessica – visit the CNIB website to find out how you can help.

The CNIB would like to extend their deepest thanks to the folks at Fairview Mall for donating their space and resources for our 2014 gift-wrap campaign – proceeds from which will help us provide much-needed support to people who are living with blindness and vision loss in Ontario.


Fairview Mall location – Upper Level – next to Aritzia ; nearest to TD entrance #5

Dates and Times:

December 1st through December 23rd

Monday through Saturday 10:30am – 9:30pm

Sunday’s 11am – 7:00pm

Christmas Eve December 24th 10:30am – 5:30pm

More information on the CNIB and their ‘How to wrap a present training video’ can be found on their Facebook site

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