Proud of Our Graduates: James Fensom

Posted on January 15th, 2016 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

Trebas Institute

This week, as part of our Proud of Our Graduates series, we’re introducing readers to James Fensom. James graduated from Trebas’ Audio Engineering and Production/DJ Arts program in 2015 and earned his own career in the sound production industry. He’s taken risks for his passion, and pursued his dreams of working as a DJ in the highly specialized sound production industry.

How It All Started

In 2010, James found himself fascinated with the world of DJing and DJ culture. His interest was so serious that he invested in his own all-in-one CDJ mixer unit so he could try his hand at sound mixing, himself.

The mixer was “so bad” in quality that James eventually decided to take a new approach to launching his DJ career—moving to London, England, an international club scene hub. It took a lot of saving up but James successfully made the move in 2012, earning himself gigs at industry-leading clubs like London’s Ministry of Sound.

“It was a lot of fun, and I returned to Canada with a matured passion,” says James. That mature passion led him first to a Master’s Degree program, where he chose to research the cultural relationship between DJs and audio-sampling technologies, “but I was excited to leave the academic world and to undertake a more hands-on experience,” James explains.

He found that hands-on DJ training experience at Trebas.

Launching a Career With Trebas Audio + DJ Training

James says Trebas provided him with new skills and knowledge that were essential to his personal career journey. He began with a passion for DJing, but soon expanded his interests to the world of sound effect production.

“The post-production classes at Trebas introduced me to the Sound Ideas database,” says James. “I used their sounds in my school projects. This gave me a good understanding of how sound effects are used in features, commercials, and video games.”

Through Trebas’ music production programs, he also got the hands-on experience he was craving as someone used to the sound-sculpting duties of the DJ. The labs and studio at Trebas taught him how to record sounds and make music at a level of professional quality expected on today’s commercial market.

Life After Audio + DJ School Graduation

Near the end of his studies, James was notified of an interesting opportunity through an email he received from Trebas Career Services.

“The posting was for an unpaid internship, which at first I was hesitant to apply for,” he recalls. After discussions with staff at Trebas about the potential of this unpaid opportunity (at a top sound effects/stock music production company) James decided to apply for the position.

“I have no regrets. It was an amazing experience that has turned into a full-time job!”

Today, James works for the organization—Sound Ideas—which encompasses various stock music, ringtone, and other sound companies. His workload involves everything from audio recording and editing to data entry, cataloguing and customer service.

“I’ve edited over 400 songs of stock music, and I have made and sold ringtones with more to do in 2016,” says James. “I also intend to make a stock music album in the New Year.”

You can hear some of James’ work for yourself on iTunes. And of course, James has kept his original passion for DJing going strong.  He continues to play gigs around the city, some alongside live musicians, and he’s about to become a stand-in live sound technician at Toronto’s popular Coda nightclub.

Congratulations James! We are so proud of all you have achieved, and look forward to hearing about what your future has in store.

Inspired by James Fensom’s story?

Visit Trebas to learn more about our Audio Engineering and DJ school or to speak with an advisor.

Write a Comment

Proud of Our Graduates: Justin Miniaci

Posted on December 25th, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

Trebas graduate Justin Miniaci hard at work.

Trebas graduate Justin Miniaci hard at work.

This week, as part of our Proud of Our Graduates series, we’re excited to introduce you to Justin Miniaci. After excelling in Trebas’ Audio Engineering and Production/DJ Arts program, Justin has earned himself a place in the highly specialized field of location sound production for film and television. His passion for music and strong work ethic have helped him every step along the way.

How it All Started

Justin Miniaci already had a career before coming to Trebas. After attending a large post-secondary institution for career training, he worked in the travel industry for years, earning his living in the thriving travel and tourism field.

But Justin’s lifelong passion for music inspired him to change paths. He decided to follow his career calling to sound production, and enrolled in Trebas’ Audio Engineering and Production/DJ Arts class of 2015.

Launching a Career with Trebas Audio + DJ Training

Changing career paths is a big decision. Justin decided on Trebas because he knew it offers one of Canada’s top audio and DJ training programs, a friendly campus, and a longstanding reputation for success.

“When doing research, I learned Trebas was established in 1979 and it is well known in the industry, so that was a major determining factor,” says Justin. “Also, the fact that the school is relatively small was very appealing. I had already experienced what it’s like to go to school in a large institution and I was looking forward to being a part of a smaller community.”

Along with hands-on training and a family atmosphere, Justin says Trebas gave him and his classmates opportunities for real-world experiences and networking while they studied. For example, they were exposed to experts in the sound-mixing and mastering industry through valuable volunteer placements at major Toronto music events, like Canadian Music Week.

Justin also believes that Trebas’ experienced and dedicated instructors play a huge part in making Trebas’ music production programs some of the best in the country. “You apply theory in class right away – and because the instructors are still in the industry, they give you the most relevant knowledge,” Justin says. “They aren’t so much instructors as they are mentors. They had and continue to have a vested interest in my success and how I am applying what they taught me.”

Life After Graduating From Audio + DJ School

So how is Justin applying his Audio/DJ training in his life today?

After completing the 48-week program in April, Justin promptly earned himself a position as a subcontractor for a company specializing in location sound and post-production audio – a role Justin describes as “the early stages of establishing myself within the world of audio for film and TV.”

Justin looks forward to what the future brings, and says Trebas has been “instrumental” to his current career success.

“Trebas provided me with a foundation on which to build my knowledge,” he explains. “You come out with a solid knowledge of how the industry works.”

Inspired by Justin’s story? Contact us for more information on Trebas’ Audio Engineering and DJ school.

Or, apply online to start your own career in the audio industry today!

Write a Comment

Proud of Our Graduates: Daniel Mansour

Posted on November 27th, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

This week, as part of our Proud of Our Graduates series, we’d like to introduce readers to Daniel Mansour. Through the Audio Engineering program at Trebas, Daniel has found his way into a fulfilling career in sound production. He currently works as music producer, sound designer, audio engineer, and electronic music artist.

Audio college

How it All Started

Music was always a part of Daniel Mansour’s life. A passion he shared with his loving and supportive father, music was what Daniel wanted to devote his future to. But social pressure to pursue stability over passion saw Daniel enrolling in a bachelor’s degree program for philosophy and the humanities after high school.

It didn’t take long for Daniel to realize that path couldn’t fulfill him. And tragically, when Daniel was 20, his father passed away. This difficult time marked a turning point in his life, when Daniel finally decided to pursue his dream of a professional music career.

“I promised myself to honour him with my music,” Daniel explains.

His Experience at Trebas

Daniel heard about Trebas from a friend of a friend who had enrolled, and he knew that it was the right place for him.

“It was a way to stay close to my father and also become more in touch with the person I wanted to be,” he says. “Up until going to Trebas I was self-taught, but Trebas helped me push myself further.”

In audio courses Daniel honed his craft, never losing sight of his goals. He aimed to expand his knowledge and improve his art, while developing his own musical style along the way.

“I began really focusing on designing my own sounds and percussion,” Daniel recalls. “I’d spend full days immersed in sound because it was all I cared about.”

The friends he made and the teachers he encountered helped Daniel find his own sound, and created an environment that encouraged him to learn, grow, and even showcase his projects. Daniel believes this time gave him the skills and confidence he needed to succeed in the sound industry.

“At Trebas the environment, the family, everything was aimed at reaching success.”

Life After Graduation

After graduating from sound school, Daniel worked as a freelance sound designer and audio engineer for a selection of independent, feature-length, and TIFF-premiered films. A professional highlight was the film Something Like This, which (with the help of Daniel’s audio handiwork) earned international critical acclaim and an honourable mention at the 2014 Berlin International Film Awards.

After a year or so in freelance sound production, Daniel decided to take the next step on his career path – producing an album of his own.

“When I felt I was ready, I put out a demo and sent it out to all the indie labels I could,” he explains.

With the help of the Trebas career services and his own networking savvy, a range of offers came back to him. But it was Humanworkshop that responded first and with the most enthusiasm for Daniel’s talent. They were excited to connect with someone who had Daniel’s skills, knowledge, and potential—so Daniel knew they were the right team to help him bring his ideas to life.

Current Audio and Music Projects

Daniel is now releasing his first album with Humanworkshop, under the name Caveone. It features innovative neuro/electronic soundscapes and layers of ambient waveforms that deserve a close listen:

Check out Caveone’s tracks for yourself on, SoundcloudSpotify or Amazon.

The album marks the first of many milestones Daniel has planned.

“It’s the baby sister of a bigger goal I have,” he explains, “to record a full orchestra and manipulate and mix the recordings with electronic sounds and big basses…”

If Daniel’s goal-reaching trend continues, there’s no doubt we’ll be hearing more from him soon. We at Trebas are so proud of the success Daniel has found, and the strong sense of purpose audio college has brought to his life.

“I could not be happy doing anything else,” he says. “This is where I was supposed to be.”

Inspired by Daniel’s story? Contact us for more information about our Audio Engineering program or apply online today!

Write a Comment

EVENT & VENUE MANAGEMENT STUDENT SPOTLIGHT on … Sean Vernon Guptill Silverman -Event Specialist

Posted on June 15th, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

By Marilyn Wasney, Dept. Head, Event & Venue Management Program 

Event and venue management student spotlight

Recently I had the opportunity to meet up with a very busy EVM alumnus. Here is what Sean had to say:

The highlight of my event career so far has been…

Being asked during my internship to be the Event Planner for the Chai-Tikvah/Life and Hope Foundation’s 2nd annual Gala and Silent Auction because of the great success I had planning their first ever fundraiser while on my internship.

My favorite event to attend is…

Events at Yonge-Dundas Square in downtown Toronto. It’s amazing the amount of activities that can go on is such a small area. Although I don’t envy the person who has to do a risk plan for these events, I’d actually love the challenge. 

The strangest thing that has happened to me as an event professional is...

I inadvertently miscalculated the height of a VIP entryway at the Miami Heat’s Player/Family fun day. I didn’t consider the height of the steps that these basketball players would have to climb to get to the VIP section through my entryway. That particular basketball season, Miami had the tallest, biggest foot, backboard-smashing athlete on their team. Needless to say, at the next game this player had a Band-Aid added to his uniform just above his brow.

How my education at Trebas has prepared me for my career…

Trebas gave me the tools and skills needed to be a confident Emerging Event Specialist as well as opening up a comprehensive networking system in the field.

To be a good event professional one has to…

LISTEN, observe, and never be afraid to speak up and ask questions. Oh! And research! Research! Research!

One piece of advice I would pass along to fellow emerging event management students is to…

Listen, and be a sponge that soaks up all the knowledge you get at school and on the job.

Keep an open mind and thrive to be one of a kind… BE YOURSELF!!!



Write a Comment

Proud Of Our Graduates: Mitch dos Santos

Posted on May 22nd, 2015 - Written by: Trebas Toronto

This week as a part of our Proud of Our Graduates series, we’d like to introduce readers to Mitch dos Santos. After graduating from the Audio Engineering and Production program at Trebas in 2014, Mitch found his way into Toronto’s studioZ, where he currently works full time as a producer and sound engineer.

Student Success Story

How it All Started

As far back as he can remember, Mitch has always had a passion for music, and played several instruments since the age of 11. He entered the workforce at age 14, working at various places like Sobey’s and Home Hardware and as time went on he moved into construction and landscaping.

Over the years, Mitch never stopped playing music. He played in several bands as a drummer, where he got to perform live and started recording mixes in impromptu basement studio set-ups. Before attending sound school, Mitch admits that the sound quality on these early recordings was shoddy at best, but a seed was definitely planted.

A major turning point for Mitch was when he got accepted into the University of Toronto’s Life Sciences program in Neuroscience and Psychology. He knew this was a great opportunity for him and had a lot of interest in these subjects, but part of him knew that this wasn’t the most fulfilling path he could take. After some careful consideration, Mitch decided to follow his gut and pursue what had always come naturally to him and made him happiest in life – writing music. He contacted Trebas, and a year and a half later is producing at a major recording studio.

His Experience at Trebas

Since his decision to enroll at an audio college, Mitch hasn’t looked back. Trebas’ multiple classes aimed at studio work helped him hone his passion for music and further develop the skill set that he uses in the industry today. The classes he took covered everything from basic studio etiquette and software set-up, to recording artists and using in-depth editing and mixing processes.

Mitch’s hunger for knowledge and experience led him to soak up as many volunteer and internship opportunities as he could through Trebas’ career services department. During his studies, he was offered a soldering job through one of his teachers, which he took. Their first job was at Iguana Studio where studioZ is located, and after meeting with the engineers and owner, Mitch was offered the chance to go work with them full-time – an opportunity he jumped on.

Current Audio and Music Projects

Mitch is currently working with up and coming hip-hop artist Ghost Rydah as both his producer and manager. They are collaboratively writing an album together that is set for release in early 2016. When he’s not at his full time job, Mitch also solders patch bays and helps wire up studios. On the weekends, he works part time as a sound tech at Toronto nightlife hotspot Coda. His grasp of the studio process and busy schedule reflects just how far Mitch has come after graduating from his audio courses!

Inspired by Mitch’s story? Contact us for more information on our Audio Engineering program or apply online today!

Write a Comment