Love York Awards

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The Love York Awards (until 2016 the YUSU Awards) are an annual awards ceremony put on by YUSU to recognize the achievements of students and societies.

YUSU Awards 2010

Apparently this was the first one, according to Steven Perring's wiki page.

Love York Awards 2017

Love York Awards 2017
Genre: Live/Awards
Broadcast: 2nd June 2017
Producer(s): Raquel Bartra
Exec Producer(s): Edwin Barnes

The 2017 Awards were held in a semi-renovated Central Hall on 2nd June. Sam Willcocks won "Highly Commended" in the "Extra Mile" award for his work at YSTV, which he will frame and put on the wall in his toilet in lieu of a degree.

Pre-Production

VTs

YUSU were quite organised with this element and came to YSTV quite early on, asking for a 'Year in the Life' and 'Outstanding Contribution to Student Life' video, in the style of those made for last year's awards. Edwin began work on these quite early, attempting to delegate the editing where possible. Liam Blake edited the first cut of the 'Year in the Life' VT after Edwin dug out various horrendously disorganised dumps of footage and live recordings, including YUSU Elections, Campus Takeover and of course Roses 2017.

Despite the good quality of Liam's edit, Edwin and Sam W set to work improving and tightening up the edit, with Sam particularly focusing on the audio. By this point Edwin had access to the list of winners (which incluced Sam W as Highly Commended for the Extra Mile Award, so secrecy was paramount), and so was able to supplement the edit with sneaky bits of winning things including CHMS Presents: Anything Goes, Anna Spowage from UoY Memes and Nightsafe. These worked well when the VT was played, as most attracted a cheer from their respective group.

The other VT was - as per tradition - a video interviewing the friends and colleagues of the winner of the 'Outstanding Contribution to Student Life' Award, which this year was Jaz Millar. Edwin was contacted by Alex Lusty (the then Activities Officer at YUSU) to start production on this which consisted of filming interviews with around 10 people over the course of several days, with editing beginning before filming ended so as to see the gaps that needed to be filled by the remaining interviews. This was one of the first outings of the then very new Canon C100 with the even newer 50mm f1.8 lens.

The use of the new camera meant everything looked rather nice - and very depth of fieldy - and was also a useful way to justify to YUSU the large amount of money spent on it. Many of the interviews were shot outdoors on some extremely hot days and the camera coped well with the large dynamic range of these shots - although the internal ND filters were not quite enough to shoot at f1.8 without a filter thread mounted one as well. Audio was slightly problematic - the Rode shotgun mic usually used on the AC-90s was used - sometimes held and sometimes on a boom pole kindly operated by Alex Lusty, and was not always free of wind noise, plus seemed to struggle with some unexpected background hum, particularly on the interview with Marcus Crabb outside the Drama Barn. Some of this was fixed in Premiere but unfortunately some was somewhat obvious through the speakers in Central Hall.

Overall the VTs were a success - they went down excellently with the audience (both eliciting applause) and the work with YUSU needed for them improved YSTV's reputation with them and helped justify the expenditure of the new camera - and our appliciations for more grant money!

Production

The director and vision mixer roles were going to be joint, with the wireless camera operator swapping half-way through. Raquel Bartra as producer, felt it was better we switched between director and vision mixer with someone, solely focussed on wireless camera. Thus, the first half had Katherine Bell directing and Sam Hance vision mixing with Dan Maher on wireless camera.

On the whole, the broadcast went smoothly from the director/vision mixer's point of view. It took a few awards to get into the flow of cuts to make, as we went from the award's announcement to the graphic with the winner's photo; to Dan's camera when he got a good shot of the winner coming down; then to Jack Train's shot of them coming up the stairs; and then to either a wide or a mid-shot at the lectern from Anna Trotman. As it was hard to know where the winner was going to come from, the pace of this was variable but a good job nonetheless.

There was also a 'mild' panic early on when the graphic overlay of the winner's name was not previewing after a certain number. This was resolved, as it was just the machine, not the actual files. However, the first graphic overlay came out as transparent to which Sam Willcocks jumped to change
a transparency settingUnverified or incomplete information
so the rest were fine. These were cued by Emily Friend using Caspar. The sound mix for the livestream was mixed by Fanny Kerekes.

Live Edit(win)

Edwin Barnes had the idea of doing live highlights for playout as soon as the event ended - a nice way to add to our production values and get our credits/logo out at the end of the show. This should have been simple - just a PC with Premiere and the Intensity Shuttle, however it was far from such.

For a start, the Intensity Shuttle did not play nicely with Premiere - but once this was fixed a far greater issue became apparent: whatever we tried, Premiere would not output audio. This continued for the whole first half of the show by which point Edwin had given up. Once the interval started, Sam gave Edwin the full Hyperdeck recording of the first half on an SSD, which after a sprint to the studio was docked in a drive toaster connected to Edwin's laptop. This worked for a couple of minutes, until the drive toaster emitted a loud pop and promptly started smoking.

Sensing defeat (and fire risk) - but still determined - Edwin tried a last ditch attempt to get the now reinstalled Premiere to work - using the Roses 2017 user account on his PC. Strangely, this fixed the issue, and after connecting the SSD internally, Edwin was able to put together a passable highlights reel with credits - better than nothing!

Tech

Although perhaps a mild cliche at this point, tech went "surprisingly well". It was a fairly standard Kenobi OB, with 3 wired cameras (including the shiny new Canon C100) for two sides of the stage and a wide shot, and a wireless AC90 for following winners and misc other shots. The newly built OB Graphics PC worked flawlessly after playing up slightly at Ask Look North, and even tally, which for a while has been a "would be nice" extra when it came to OBs was in and working.

There was a certain amount of fun getting YUSU's Front of House slideshow/videos into the Vision Mixer, which was eventually solved by AV providing a Blackmagic Teranex 3D standards converter (known to Sam as "The Blackmagic box with the most buttons on the front of it". The rack flight case that said Teranex came in also happened to contain a Blackmagic Hyperdeck SSD recorder, which we appropriated for the evening to record the event to.

Comms was achieved using Mumble again, as is becoming more common... Sam Willcocks might even finish writing the software for it one day. The two YSTV Laptops were used at the camera ends, connected to umbilical Ethernet, and a hodgepodge of phones and laptops in the gallery.

Behind The Streams

Following Sam Hance's impromptu creation of the Behind The Streams show during and after Ask Look North, he was asked to cover this event upon arrival. With a DSLR and a Rode Videomic Pro on hand, he got to filming the different jobs going on. Particularly in Central Hall, the low lighting hindered this footage but let's say the grain adds 'authenticity'.


YSTV Productions
YSTV Programmes • Events Coverage • One-offs