(This course is validated by the University of Brighton and delivered by Northbrook College)


UCAS code: WW24

Fees and Finance


Apply via UCAS code: WW24 ( more info )


The Course

The lighting and sound pathways start by providing an introduction to the skills, techniques, and equipment, used in the entertainment industries across live events and theatre.


In the first year the emphasis is on gaining knowledge and experience in order to develop more independent practice and an emphasis on design and leadership in the second year.

Why choose this course at the MET?


● Equipped with the latest digital lighting and sound equipment.
● Etc ION lighting desk
● DiGiCo SD Series Consoles with digital system drive and state of the art WAVES soundgrid systems.
● Large selection of moving lights as well as conventional fixtures.
● 162 seat configurable theatre space with fly tower and scenic flying system.
● Additional large well equipped studio space.
● Selection of truss and chain hoists for rigging for events.
● Roland AV mixer, projectors and video-mapping software available.
● Access to fully equipped workshop for scenery construction.


Work experience/links with employers

Our Theatre department is well known across the Industry. Many of our alumni now offer work experience opportunities as well as employment to students. All students will have the opportunity to undertake a minimum of two weeks of work experience, which will provide invaluable links with local and/or national employers. These include: Chichester Festival Theatre, Royal National Theatre, Royal Opera House, Glyndebourne Festival, Brighton Festival, Kinky Boots, Aladdin, Wicked, Sweeney Todd, Hamilton, Royal Albert Hall, Worthing Theatres and Eastbourne Theatres to name just a few.


See the NBT Backstage Twitter feed


See the MET Techs Instagram feed


See the Northbrook Backstage Facebook page


Course Content

The course aims to take learners from a starting point that assumes no prior knowledge through to a level at which they can function as independent practitioners in their chosen pathway.

This is achieved through lectures and practical exercises which are then applied to specific events and productions. These are student led with supervision kept as minimal as possible so that students learn in a realistic environment and are free to learn from problems that may occur.

The emphasis is on providing a stimulating learning environment with interesting projects and opportunities to collaborate with other students on different pathways including designers, props makers, artists and music students.


Course Units

  • Introduction to Discipline Practice
  • Contextual Studies
  • Discipline based skills
  • Applied Discipline based skills
  • Inter-Discipline Practice
  • Discipline based skills development
  • Specialist based skills development
  • Applied Specialist Discipline skills
  • Collaborative Practice
  • Applied academic practice
  • Industry practice
  • Negotiated project


Programme Specification



● Practical assessment on commercial clients
● Written assignment
● Portfolio



On successful completion of this FdA, you may wish to continue your studies at the MET and move on to the BA (Hons) Theatre Arts.

Over 95% of students go on the further study or employment. Students have achieved positions both nationally & internationally. Recent employers include, The Royal Opera House, The Royal National Theatre, Cameron Macintosh, Glyndebourne Festival Opera & Chichester Festival Theatre. Recent production credits include, 'Dreamgirls', 'Kinky Boots', 'Charlie & the Chocolate Factory', 'One Man, Two Guvnors', 'War Horse' and 'Gypsy'.



Our Alumni is extensive with progression to industry across all areas. Employers of note include: Royal National Theatre, Royal Opera House, Chichester Festival Theatre, Glyndebourne Festival, Queen Mary 2, P&O Azura, Royal Albert Hall.


Productions include: Hamilton, Kinky Boots, Gypsy, Sweeney Todd, Wicked, Sound of Music, Annie (International & National Tour)


Steph Baldwin Steph Baldwin


"As Technical Projects Manager at the Royal Albert Hall, I oversee all the projects that the show department undertakes each year, which ranges from small scale, such as an equipment upgrade, to a large scale install such as a brand new loading lift or staging system.


We will have an idea about what we would like to improve, and along with the team, we start researching and sourcing equipment and contractors. I'll manage the quoting, overall budgets and programme, as well as overseeing the work once people get onsite.


Alongside this, I still undertake duty shifts as per my previous role of Technical Manager'. This involves being assigned to an event, advancing the technical information, as well as facilitating any of the in-house lighting that the promoter would like to use. On the day, operational duties include running all the house motors for rigging, plugging up power, setting up lighting systems, amongst a hundred other things!


The course I undertook at Brighton Met (Northbrook College) was the perfect start to my career, giving me the skills to progress into employment."


Josh Atwood Josh Atwood


During my last year of the FdA, I took it upon myself to gain as much experience as possible working on whatever I could. I managed to get a week's worth of work experience with the Head of Lighting at Billy Elliot the Musical.


At the end of my time there, they offered me a casual position in the Lighting Department to cover holidays etc. Towards the end of my course, I took on more casual roles around the West End from the contacts I made whilst doing work experience on: We Will Rock You, Spring Awakening, Betty Blue Eyes and a few fringe shows.


When my time had finished at Northbrook, I was fortunate enough to be offered the role of Head of Lighting at the Hawth Theatre in Crawley, where I really learnt my craft for three years: fitting up, programming and operating alongside many other tasks. It was so important for the next step in my career to have real world experience under my belt. Northbrook was fantastic for laying down the foundations and was a great platform to springboard into the industry.


From the Hawth, I moved to the Adelphi Theatre, where I worked for a year on 'The Bodyguard', which was my first full time job in the West End. After a year, I moved to another theatre within the same group (Really Useful Theatre Group) where I was promoted.


Next was 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, where I am still based, working on '42nd Street'. During my career I have always freelanced alongside and have been a production electrician on a few touring musicals internationally and in the UK, including Jersey boys, Footloose, Spamamalot and productions such as the BAFTA awards, Michael Mcintyre's Big Show, the PGA golf tour and many more.


I've personally found in this industry that if you work hard and you want it enough, there is no limit to what you can achieve. I am excited to announce that I'll be moving to The Victoria Palace Theatre as Deputy Head of Lighting, working on the fabulous new production of 'Hamilton'.

Thanks to Northbrook for giving me the platform to succeed."


Student Testimonials

James Redford


"I enjoyed studying on the FdA Lighting & Production course, which enabled to fully understand the various different disciplines that are within the theatre industry. I found that Northbrook Theatre's equipment was very up-to-date, which meant that we got the best out of our time within there whilsy producing shows. The best thing about this course to me, was being able to put on a variety of different shows with their own different challenges waiting to be solved, whilst supported by industry professionals"


Danny Cunnett - Lighting Tutor

● Previous experience has included freelance lighting design work.
● Worked as Lighting Technician at the National Theatre
● Worked as Stage Technician at Glyndebourne Opera
● Worked as Lighting Technician at London Palladium and other West End venues
● Qualified Electrician and Carpenter


Jamie Skey - Sound Tutor

● Freelance Live Sound Engineer and System Technician
● BSc (Hons) Audio System Design
● Worked as the Head of Sound at The Hawth Theatre
● System Technician for Billy Ocean
● Worked as Touring Sound no.1 & 2 on various international productions
● Certified on multiple live sound surfaces and systems including (Midas, DiGiCo,Yamaha, Avid) (l'acoustics, d&b Audiotechnik, Martin MLA)


Data from Unistats, the UK's national higher education data comparison website: