“We literally do not have a stage to stand on if it’s not for the trades,” says Jason McCoy of The Road Hammers. McCoy, along with many other Canadian musicians, participated in a new video by the Ontario College of Trades (the College) to promote careers in the skilled trades to youth.
Tune In, Trade Up
The College’s Tune In, Trade Up campaign makes the point: Even if you can’t hold a tune, play an instrument or write a song, you can still be part of the music industry by working in the skilled trades that support the festivals and concerts.
According to a 2012 study by PwC, commissioned by Music Canada, the live music industry generates more than $455 million a year in economic activity, much of it in Ontario.
“Live music is a significant contributor to Ontario’s economy, and the skilled trades are essential to the success of the sector,” says Erin Benjamin, Executive Director of Music Canada Live. “Without the tradespeople, the major festivals and concerts wouldn’t be possible.”
There are dozens of skilled trades associated with live music events — heavy equipment operators, general carpenters, electricians, truck and coach technicians, cooks, hairstylists, and many others.
“Once you get out of your apprenticeship you have a ticket to go anywhere in the world and work in many different aspect of the trade,” says certified electrician Shawn Jackson, who worked on the recent Boots and Hearts music festival near Barrie.
“There are many trades in demand and the jobs can be well paying. That’s sweet music for those looking for a solid future,” notes David Tsubouchi, the College’s CEO and Registrar.
Ryan Howes, Festival Producer for Republic Live, explains that “when you produce a music festival, you literally have to build and run a small city. And that means you need a lot of skilled tradespeople working on site.”
Republic Live’s WayHome and Boots and Hearts festivals held this past summer each employed about 250 skilled workers.
Amazing Video and More
The cornerstone of the College’s campaign is an amazing new video. Going behind the scenes at this past summer’s WayHome and Boots and Hearts music festivals, the video showcases the people and the trades who make these events happen. Check it out by clicking here.
Other elements of the campaign include: a webpage — earnwhileyoulearn.ca/tunein — featuring interactive information about the skilled trades through the lens of the music industry, how to get started in the trades and contests to engage young people in learning more.
“We want Ontario’s youth to know there are many opportunities within the skilled trades — whether it’s related to music or other exciting industries. The key is to let them discover the many rewarding career choices that can combine their passion with the chance to earn while they learn,” says Sherri Haigh, Director of Communications and Marketing at the College.
About the Ontario College of Trades
The Ontario College of Trades (the College) is an industry-driven, professional regulatory body with a mandate to protect the public interest by regulating and promoting skilled trades in Ontario.
For further information or to arrange interviews, contact:
Ontario College of Trades