50 years working in Film & Television industry 1960 - 2010
Stagesound London King St WC1 this was the original Covent Garden
Recording on EMI TR 90 tape machines - film dubbing and voice over for BBC Schools Programmes.
Shepperton Film Studios 1962
British Lion Films - Preview Theatre
British Lion Films Post Sync
British Lion Films Film Dubbing.
BBC TV Ealing Studios 1963 BBC TV TRAINEE SCHEME
Working in nearly all London BBC TV Bases.
BBC TV News Alexandre Palace 1963
16mm film rushes viewed on 16mm Bell & Howell Projectors.
BBC TV Lime Grove Studios 24 Hour Programme.
BBC Television Centre Wood Lane
BBC Television Kensington House
Working on Desmond Wilcox Manalive BBC 2 Docummentary - Bradens Week - Thats Life Esther Rantzen.
BBC TV Centre TV News Spur
Copying Sound MAG Tracks so BBC 1 NEWS & BBC 2 News started with same material and then edited to suit their own channel editors.
Keller Rock & Roll Dubbing 16mm film
Laying effects, mixing for news bulletins BBC1 & 2
ITN News at Ten Studio Sound Crew 1973
ITN Studio 2 Hire of Services.
Pop Promos for Mike Mansfield.
Optical Recording for Thames Television series
Sweeney & Minder series.
The first recordings of hearing our MP's in Parliament recording onto tape and editing for News Clips.
ITN News Outside Broadcast 3 Camera Unit in a Range Rover - then Bedford Truck.
This included Yvonne Fletcher shooting & Iranian Embassy Seige plus so many other news stories, live and recorded.
ITN News Location Film Sound Recordist 1979
Film Camera Crew 21- CP16 - Auricon Amplifier.
Extensive news coverage on film in Northern Ireland.
ITN Volvo Camera Cars fitted with PYE 2 way radios, to the first large brick telephones and pagers.
RCA Eng Camera - the first Camera you could see the actual pictures on playback, after film where it had to be processed in ITN News Laboratory for 40mins, this included playing out live into the news transmission from a playback machine connected to a local BT station and at Crystal Palace transmitter.
Sony 330 Eng Camera - and Umatic Video Recorder.
Extensive coverage in the Middle East Beiruit.
UK Golf Championships coverage
ITN News ENG Location Sound Recordist
ITN News at Ten Assignments Advisor when the first ENG camera came out with its own video recorder in the camera, enabling 1-2 or 3 person crew-to single operation.
Sony Betacam SP.
Worldwide News coverage including the Total Eclipse, Royal Tours, to Westminster-Downing St coverage to NATO exercises,
Assigning crews and personnel at Political Party Conferences, including for ITN Channel Four.
ITN News at Ten Cameraman /Sound - 1 person crew
Panasonic DVC Pro Camera
ITN contracts including working for many foreign broadcasters whilst in UK -
ITN News becomes ITV News.
Terresterial Links to SNG links to SAT phones.
Royal Rota coverage.
GMTV overnight - & 6am programme live news coverage.
Channel Four News
Channel Five News early days under ITN Contract.
Worked for ITN - 1973 - 2005 for many years i was the only location sound recordist and equipped with wireless true diversity, lights, communication kits, earpieces and mixers and full range of microphones.
Procam TV Broadcast Hire. 2005
Working as location Sound Recordist to setting up a Sound Dept with testing and maintenance and line up procedures, teaching warehouse staff and testing them on location sound to ensure the management team were happy to hire out these staff for location shoots.Working as Head of Sound
and teaching self shooters and producers to get the best sound on their shoots to lining up cameras and wireless microphones with multi-frequency coverage for Big Brother and Wife Swap etc.
With a hire company all the equipment is the very latest technology.
Moving into Education in 2007 with my hands on teaching ability and experience.
Principal Technical Officer Film & Television,managing students on 3yr Film & Television Production Course running High Defintion 1080i-50 4 Camera TV Studio, teaching all aspects of television production, racks cameras vision sound grips lighting, to teaching location sound from SQN mixers and Sound Devices wireless microphones setting up and the UK laws to maintaining 16 broadcast location camera kits, and overseeing studio upgrades to webcasts to wall box and comms.
Including working on University external projects, Life of Stanley Kubrick filming on location for St Albans Museum and Elstree Studios, overseeing students and shoots on location.
This was a tapeless studio with Panasonic P2 full size broadcast cameras on vinten studio pedestals and recorded onto Xsan 16 terrabyte server with Final Cut Pro editing.
Visiting Tutor with enhanced CRB issued by Devon County Council to students at Exmouth Community College Media Dept, teaching students from many Devon Schools whom were all brought by coach to Exmouth College to receive my training course on camera sound lights health and safety, camera techniques and technical training.
Training Courses for other media students on
University Students on BA - MA media film & television production courses,from technical training to running a television studio to location filming and technical training. Community Colleges teaching students filming techniques and technical training.
To teaching self shooters and producers the use of camera sound light and technical training including staff at Broadcast Hire Co facilities, and setting up equipment and line up.
Location Sound Recording,teaching camera sound lights grips wireless microphones set-up rigging fault finding going live comms camera line up.
Television Studio HD racks cameras teleprompt studio sound rigging vision lighting cables connectors all aspects of television training.
Location Sound Training for News & Docummentary Students whom want to work in the Television Industry
Safe Working and Risk Assessment.
Designed for SELF SHOOTERS - students to become LOCATION SOUND RECORDISTS
Setting up the HD Camera
Working on cable - or wireless link
Location Mixers- Microphones - Wireless Microphones -Setting Levels- Clean Feed- IFB
Wallbox Going Live - Fault Finding - Interface with Camcorders
Going Live - Location set -ups - rigging - sound balancing - multi - wireless microphone set-up - boom operation - line feeds to studio - taking feeds at location - boom microphones -
The following interview "A SOUND LIFE of Michael Parkin" by Guy Peters is an extract from the Sidmouth Magazine which is produced here in Sidmouth Devon by Hedgehog Media, publication Sidmouth & East Devon Life.
photograph was taken on location the day after Helen Mac Arther
returned from her round the world trip and with Mark Austin ITN-ITV
reporter now host of News at Ten with the camera crew and producer with
Mike Parkin- Michael Leonard Parkin Sound Recordist with ITN from 1973
till 2005, before that Michael was with BBC TV NEWS,and BBC film Dept
1963-1973.andbefore this was at Shepperton Film Studios - Copyright
Parkin-Michael Parkin-Michael Leonard Parkin the originator of the official Sidmouth Website by name of its domain http:// www.sidmouth.com Sidmouth Website.
The town website helping to promote Sidmouth in Devon England for small business and commerce The Sidmouth Area District Directory with its unique multi-listings to locate the Business Name and link and show its Domain.
The image-photograph is Michael Parkin ITN Sound Recordist, just another normal day on the road with ITN-ITV NEWS, this was the day in 2006 when Michael Parkinson signed up with ITV to do his SATURDAY NIGHT chat show, we had not met face to face untill this interview, we had so much to talk about as Michael Parkinson new all colleagues that i had closely worked alongside when i Michael Parkin worked for the BBC back in 1963-1973 working closely with DESMOND WILCOX Manalive Documentary fame and Bradens Week which became the Saturday Nights Thats Life where Esther Rantzen became the celebratity of the show.So this is the image-photograph of us the two PARKY,s together.This photograph was taken on the rooftop of a london hotel after the PRESS RELEASE Michael Parkinson leaves BBC to join ITV.
photograph image was taken at the ITN News Studios at 48 Wells Street
London circa 1980 showing the NEWS AT TEN newscaster ANNA FORD putting
on her final make up for the live broadcast in the background DIANA
EDWARD JONES the Director showing the QUEEN around the set, with
MICHAEL PARKIN checking the comms and audio with the SOUND CONTROL this
was just a few months before MICHAEL PARKIN went on the road for ITN as
a SOUND RECORDIST on film camera crew 21. Well before the days of
websites and the internet, when the SOUND RECORDIST would have to
unload the film camera on the bonnet of the film crew car inside a
black bag, then the film would be sent back by dispatch rider to be
processed in the film lab for 45 minutes then edited for NEW AT TEN.At
this time Reginald Bosenquet, Andrew Gardner,Gordon Honeycombe Alastair
Burnet were also popular NEWS AT TEN newscasters. Photo image Circa
Michael Parkin BBC TELEVISION 1963 to 1973.
Alexandre Palace-Television Centre-Lime Grove Studios- Television Film Studios Ealing-Kensington House.
BBC TV News BBC 2 Manalive Bradens Beat- That?s Life Desmond Wilcox my boss for many yrs, and Esther Rantzen ITN 1973 ITN 48 WELLS ST LONDON W1 Sound Tecnician- ITN OB- ITN Studio Sound Optical Recording
1981 Film Sound Recordist ?ENG Sound Recordist until Sept 2005 working permanetely on the road around the globe for ITN-ITV News Gathering.
ITN-ITV 200 GRAYS INN ROAD LONDON Sept 2005.
2005 Michael Parkin Head of Sound Procam TV.
Local Website Co-ordinator putting the Devon Towns on the internet to help preserve the local shopping communities, save our High Streets becoming the same as the copycat high streets.Helping the local Devon traders and shopkeepers in EAST DEVON.
[ www.honiton.com ]
[ www.sidmouth.com ]
Michael Parkin the local resident in East Devon not only having
travelled the world from Royal Tours to Major conflicts to London
Bombings the first hunger striker in Northen Ireland to standing on
street corners outside all the major Courts covering the major news
stories of the day, and seen history in the making now is dedicated in
helping the local shopping high streets, in villages and communities to
get there business seen by others, this in turn helps the local
residents economy brings customers and visitors to these sometimes
forgotton areas, where the effects of the large corporate names are
dominating the area,if you feel that a advert to spread your wings,
even if you have your own expensive website, linking through our
websites and information pages, will inprove the position of your
website and customer base, give me a call, toghether with the expertise
and back-up of our team of web designers and IT consultants in COSMIC
in OTTERY ST MARY DEVON you can rest assured in a one to one CUSTOMER
SERVICE.Iam happy walking the local Devon Streets seeing for myself the
local trades and craftsmen whom weclome me with open arms to assist in
putting them on the web.
Call me, i can help you and the full support of our LOCAL DEVON IT expertise.
Updating the LOCAL DEVON BUSINESS INFORMATION DATABASE.
Tel 07803 22 9 416
Email [ firstname.lastname@example.org ]
few more photographs of Michael Parkin shown here from doing long hours
of Camera Coverage during the Libyan Embassy siege from early tours
to Royal Tours on board the royal flight with the Queen touring Kenya to interview with Barry Humphries ,in Spain with Nigel Mansell, Jubilee Celebrations outside Buckingham Palace with Nicholas Owen presenting the live coverage doing better than he did appearing in Strictly Come Dancing onboard with Sir Richard Branson on his Virgin Challenger which we filmed the sea trials, very hard on my back with being thrown around the boat.Then I was assigning crews and facilities at a Liberal Conference in Scarborough to being in full NBC suit in Germany on a NATO exercise me being on the right of frame, Brent Sadler then at ITN since been with CNN news network and one of my Cameramen Sebastian Rich his published book
with a few lines about us in Nothern Ireland and the death of the first hunger striker Bobby Sands, to covering golf for the sports desk with Bernhard Langer to me at very young age at ITN film department transferring the audio tracks of the Thames TV programmes of the Sweeney.and more studio shots of Royals and Anna Ford and Alastair Burnet and myself Studio Sound Technician to being in full recovery red kit during a helicopter disaster and so many thousands of lifetime memories and pictures and press cuttings of being arrested and near misses around the world chartering aircraft and facilities to conflicts to May Day marches and Court coverage and live broadcasts to losing a great work colleague and friend Terry Lloyd a true gentlemen whom was shot by American troops in Basra. Life in the TV news profession is so different as you are assigned a job by the news desk and finish being with colleagues and work mates 24-7 sometimes for months in very difficult working environments having to make the best of it.
A few months ago another old colleague gave me a very early photograph with the then well known boxer Cassius Clay whom changed his name, photograph taken with me appearing from left of frame, there must be so many more photographs and Cuttings that I have not seen,one funny story outside the London High Court covering a major news item, pushing and shoving in the crowd iam trying to get my boom microphone in to hear the release of the Lady, not until I saw the front page headlines and photograph on the well known daily paper my long boom was pushing the Police mans helmet off, so he was holding on tight, but from my position some 18 feet away I was un aware of this situation but it made a great picture image. So being a webmaster helping and talking with local business in Devon to encourage them to join the business Database that I started from scratch many years ago you can see iam the man for the job well used to meeting and talking with clients and a very good organiser and hoping to improve the plight of the small business against the dominance of the retail giants in Devon and improve the economic development and regeneration of local shopping in Devon communities and towns and villages in Devon and the South West.
being very keen on sound at my parents home in Eltham with making my
own DJ desk and early tape recorders to joining Stage Sound in King
Street Covent Garden to working at Shepperton Film Studios to joining
the BBC film Department at TFS Ealing to Alexandre Palace, working on
Man alive my boss Desmond Wilcox, Bernard Braden Esther Rantzen,
joining ITN in 1973, and my late cousin Dennis Main Wilson being
responsible creating Till Death Do us Part, Rag Trade, Sammy Davis
Junior shows, 6 five special Hancocks Half Hour putting many on tv, as
when he originally joined the BBC after the war he started off as a
talent spotter with Willian G Stewart and was given the nickname Dame
May Witty by Sammy Davis when he visited the UK and Dennis would
organise the production of his shows,to following my dad around all the
London theatres working for Stoll Moss Empire and H.M Tennent the
production companies making the sets,I used to find it fasinating on
his weekend Saturday Sundays following him and helping out to my life
now of teaching and training the new comers to the Television Industry
in Sound Training and techniques making them proficient to become Sound
Recordists and Sound Supervising and answering the everyday technical
issues associated with Broadcast Audio Equipment and looking at new
So you can see I still lead a very busy hectic lifestyle.
Michael Parkin started life training to be an architect, but soon followed his lifes ambition by joining Stagesound Recording Company in King Street Covent Garden in 1960 on quarter inch tape recording and film dubbing on 16 & 35 mm film for BBC Schools programmes. From here he joined Shepperton Film Studios with British Lion Films in the post sync theatre, then he joined the BBC TV on the training scheme in 1963 at Television film studios at Ealing from here he was quickly posted to Alexandria Palace for BBC TV NEWS, like most jobs at the BBC you are posted to all operational areas including Lime Grove Studios, Television Centre, then a position came up with Desmond Wilcox on the BBC television documentary Manalive as his personal film assistant where Esther Rantzen was a researcher, Bernard Braden came back to TV after a break from radio and Desmond was asked to take control of a new Saturday series called Bradens Week, where Esther and other researchers would read out consumer stories, soon Esther and Desmond became a couple and the new programme That’s Life took off.
Michael after a few years moved on when the BBC TV News moved into the Television Centre where Michael was a dubbing editor laying tracks for the news and mixing the audio commentary and effects tracks of the BBC news items ITN in 1973 was looking for Sound Technicians and Michael joined doing hire of services commercials,optical recordings for the Sweeney TV series and was Sound assistant on the studio floor for the flagship ITN news bulletins lunchtime, early evening news, and the well known News at Ten, working alongside many well known newscasters and presenters Reginald Bosenquet Andrew Gardener Alastair Burnet Robert Key Leonard Parkin John Suchet Anna Ford Selina Scott and Trevor Mac Donald around 1980 Michael was promoted to a location film sound recordist where the Sound Recordist solely working on the road newsgathering where you would have to change the film stock in a black bag on the bonnet of the crew car with rubber bullits and petrol bombs thrown inplacesBelfastBelfastandLondonderry,soon the first Electronic News Gathering cameras were taking over for instant pictures and sound the RCA camera and Sony 330 cameras with the Sound Recordist would carry the video umatic tape machine in war zones like Beiruit middle east crisis,during the death of Northern Irelands first hunger striker Bobby Sands Michael recalls being there for the funeral where he was welcomed by the family, have tea and cakes, if you film us putting on our masks when the courtage starts we will shoot you, have more tea and cakes with Bobby, there he was in the next room with in an open coffin.
Michael stories, press cuttings and photo library are endless as he has worked with so
Casssius Clay, Parkinson so many Royals as Royal Rota Press Crew with Charles and Diana, from Politicians, pop stars Michael has had access to so many buildings and places of great interest, worked with so many well known names like Alastair Stewart Jon Snow Peter Snow Kate Derham Mary NightingaleLeonard Parkin Trevor MacDonald Martyn Lewis Norman Rees James Mates Sandy Gall Brent Sadler Michael Brunson Michael Nicholason Mark Webster he has been to so many priveliged locations and seen history in the making travelling on the same Royal Flight as the Queen to Kenya Bangladdesh Pakistan, been arrested in Nigera followed by the secret service agents arrested in Prague,worked on Channel Four News Channel Five News, GMTV breakfast show lives around the UK, travelled on high speed ribs at sea, travelled in the cockpit of Concord, flown on Nato exercise combatHelicopter visual flying,flown in the RAF Nimrod, filmed disasters,winched off by helicopter from royal naval ships after interviewing H.R.H Prince of Wales.
On the first inaugural flight from London City Airport filmed the London Eye being winched into place when the huge German cranes cable slipped and it was another two weeks before it was then ready to be lifted vertically into place, sometime later Michael worked on the live GMTV breakfast show live broadcast with it moving and Eammon Holmes presented it from the capsule, been down seeing the channel tunnel excavated, in underground war command bunkers. Nato exercise wearing NBC suit being in gas chamber filmed in F1 racing cars round a test circuit so Michael has lead an interesting life for 32 years with ITN Michael has also lost great working colleagues like Terry Lloyd whom was shot in Basra, Michaels last major stories were the announcement of the Olympic Bid in Trafalger Square with Mark Austin whom now is the presenter of the flagship news at Ten to the next day covering again with Mark Austin the London Bombings. Michael knows about the changes in Technology from film to umatic tape, to the first one piece Camera the Sony Betacam,where the recording tape is in the camera, from film stripe sound, from 405 lines Black and White Television to 625 Colour to stereo, and surround sound to hard drives and digital audio, Michaels knowledge and training is now being given to the new hopefuls joining the broadcast media across the uk.
Michaels love of Sidmouth in Devon started from Holidays in the area then finally settling here in 1991, but owned property here since the early 1983 with a great interest in local business and websites Michael has created with full IT support of Cosmic in Ottery the towns favourite Sidmouth Comprehensive Guide,this has greatly attracted tourism and visitors to the town where most of the towns business has realised this is the way forward and created by local business joining the huge database, including Honiton, Seaton Axminster Ottery.Its great that the town is seen in a different perspective than the officials, that have not travelled the world ,and Michael experiences give him a great platform view of knowing what others want to see on the town website.
Michael is an active member of his local chamber of Commerce and gets a great deal of pleasure helping small individual retailers the chance of a web presence for very little cost.
Some of the areas most sought after business with their own websites have realised that Michaels professional databases do help others find their expensive websites
Stage Sound Recodrding Company 1960
Shepperton Film Studios, British Lion
BBC TV Film Dept
BBC TV NEWS Alexandria Palace London
BBC TV Manalive
BBC Bradens Beat- to That’s Life
ITN NEWS-1973-ITV NEWS to SEPT 2005, before the legislation of AGEISM.
Procam Television- Broadcast Television Crews-Broadcast Kit Hire-London-Manchester-Dubai. Head of Sound.
Dennis Main Wilson was born to a working-class family in Dulwich on May 1 1924, and educated at Colfe's Grammar School, where he became fluent in German.
At 17 he joined the BBC European Service and was soon given the job of writing satirical anti-Nazi propaganda for broadcast to occupied Europe. At this stage of his career he worked for Hugh Carleton Greene, later to become Director-General of the BBC.
In 1943 Wilson was sent to Sandhurst and joined the Inns of Court Armoured Cavalry. He was among the first British troops ashore at Juno on D-Day. Half his regiment were wiped out within 48 hours.
Later Wilson - still only 20 - was given the job of "liberating" the German radio station in Hamburg, replacing Nazi-style broadcasting with his own brand of humour.
After the war he rejoined the BBC and was made its talent spotter as Head of Auditioning. The first of many discoveries was Bob Monkhouse. A year later he came across Peter Sellers, then providing comedy interludes at the Windmill theatre, and Tony Hancock.
With Spike Milligan, Harry Secombe, Peter Sellers and Michael Bentine, Wilson put together The Goon Show. It ran for seven years.
Till Death do us part- Hancocks Half Hour-Rag Trade & many more.
Michaels relation "Dennis Main Wilson" known as Dane May Whitty that name was given to Dennis by Sammy Davis Junior on his visits to the UK and the BBC shows
Dennis would oversee as well as producing "Hancocks Half Hour" "Rag Trade" and the well known "Till Death Do us Part".
Dennis was bought up in Eltham Well Hall area then he married and moved to Blackheath untill his retirement from BBC Television.
Dennis Main Wilson 1924 till 1997.
Desmond Wilcox Michael's boss for many happy years whilst Michael worked for the BBC TV on the BBC documentary series "Man Alive" and continued till the revival of Bernard Braden on Bradens Beat where Esther would read out the consumer stories with John Pitman, then Esther and Desmond married and the show becamethe Saturday Night favourite "Thats Life"
Michaels BBC Television career 1963-1973 BBC Television and BBC Television News then Michael moved to ITN in 1973.
Desmond Wilcox, died at the age of 69, was one of the UK's most innovative documentary makers.
His ground-breaking programmes introduced millions of people to moving stories of human lives in extraordinary circumstances.
His talent lay in the passion he brought to the subject matter and his unfussy presentation.
The story of David captivated millions of people He believed that real life provided enough drama without "beefing up" a story, and rejected the "fly on the wall" approach as being fundamentally flawed.
In an interview in 1986 he said: "Real life honestly portrayed is sufficiently dramatic in itself.
"The idea that might lurk in some people's minds that you somehow have to beef it up, or pump it up or invent the circumstances to make it more colourful, is an idea born of Fleet Street and ignorance."
Among his most memorable programmes was the series following the story of David Jackson, a badly-deformed Peruvian boy whose face was rebuilt by a Scottish surgeon who adopted him.
Real life honestly portrayed is sufficiently dramatic in itself
Desmond Wilcox in 1986
Millions of TV viewers were captivated by the story of the baby rescued in the Amazonian jungle by a charity worker.
The series won six international awards and Desmond Wilcox recently returned to the story of David's life.
He began his career in journalism as a reporter on a weekly newspaper in 1949, after a brief time working as a deckhand in the merchant marine.
He moved to Fleet Street after two years of National Service.
He worked for the Daily Mirror, becoming a foreign correspondent in the New York bureau.
1960 he moved to television as a reporter on ITV's This Week current
affairs programme, where he stayed for five years until joining the BBC.
Desmond Wilcox formed the Man Alive documentary unit It was with the BBC that he was to make many of his award-winning documentaries.
He was co-editor and presenter of the landmark Man Alive series in 1965, pioneering some innovative documentary techniques.
His instinct for exploring the strength and frailty of human relationships produced a wealth of fascinating documentaries.
He later formed the Man Alive Unit.
From 1972 to 1980 he was head of general features at the BBC and went on to make series such as Americans, The Visit, Black in Blue and A Day in the Life.
He was married to television presenter Esther Rantzen for 22 years, with whom he had three children.
When Bernard Braden came back to tv with Bradens Week Esther joined reading the consumer stories,later the programme was re-vamped into Thats Life where Esthers career took off on this Saturday Night TV Show.
Michael joined the Manalive team from there viewing rooms were at Lime Grove Studios later moving Michael to the Manalive Unit offices at BBC Kensington House just behind Sheperds Bush Green London.After this Michael re-joined BBC TV News when Alexabdre Palace was closed opening up in the BBC TELEVISION STUIOS at White City London,moving to ITN in 1973.More BBC Television Memories.
Whilst Michael worked for the BBC on the "Manalive* documentary programme many names come back to my memories Angela Huth now a well known author Jean La Chard Jim Douglas Henry Bernard Braden and his wife Barbara Kelly John Pitman Esther Rantzen Trevor Philpot another was a young secretary Doris Dwight she had a well known brother Elton John we were all based in the Kensington House building of the BBC just behind Sheperds Bush Green all these programmes were shot on 16mm film.These were early days for BBC 2. "Thats Life" programme was the centre of attraction for Saturday Nights.I was very young and had just managed to afford to buy a new Austin Healey Sprite where occasionally Desmond would borrow it leaving me his Jaguar 3.4 so he could get around not being recognised with Esther in the early days of there relationship.At that time a very large gentleman called Aubrey Singer whom was the head of the new BBC2 used to live just behind Olympia and i used to give him a lift to Kensington House some mornings on my drive in from Old Bexley Village my parents home to Kensington House you can imagine it was a tight squeeze in my sports car.
My days at Shepperton Films Studios
Squires Bridge Road Shepperton was a long drive across county from
Bexley to Shepperton no M25 then was in my new Fiat 500 which was
?399-00 brand new as i could not afford the extra ?70-00 to buy a
Austin Mini.Shepperton was a main film production studio but a long way
each day from my parents home so when the BBB TV offered me a job which
first started at TFS Television Film Studios Ealing i was delighted
then to be placed at the Alexandria Palace The main BBC TV NEWS centre
was a great privalige.Loading up the Bell & Howell 16mm film
projectors with the reversal film stock.
To the complete transformation here in 2007 with hard drives and flash memory cards and technology changing everyday high definition cameras Sound Devices Hard Disc timecode recorders and the latest Sony Digital equipment my life has seen so many changes and the training courses i now give to new recruits in film making and broadcasting in Sound Recording on SQN mixers from video producers now doing the whole thing and using wireless technology my life as Head of Sound is constantly changing in keeping others up to speed with technology and offering clients the best procedures and equipment and technical backup for the new world of television
With such an extensive career in broadcasting from 1960 to date, from film and optical sound tracks from the SWEENEY Thames Tv programmes that ITN would transfer the optical sound recordings when Michael first joined ITN in 1973 and being the Sound Technician on the studio floor for the flag ship News at Ten Michael worked closely alongside many well established names from Cameramen Sound Recordists Directors Floor Managers to Newscasters to Presenters to Journalists to reporters it is hard to mention all but a few names come to mind from Studio Sound to location crew on the frontline of news gathering worldwide.
Mark Austin-Nicholas Owen-Tony Carthew-Robert Hall-Mark Webster-Brent Sadler-Keith Hatfield-John Suchet-Martin Lewis-Rory Mc pherson-PeterFairley-Graham Miller-Anna Ford-Gordon Honeycombe-Trevor Mc Donald-Reginald Bosenquet-Andrew Gardener-John Parker-Leonard Parkin-Norman Rees-Ken Reece-Richard Lindley-Robert Key-Ray Maloney-Peter Snow-Peter Scissons-Jon Snow-Katie Derham-Terry Lloyd-Mary Nightingale-Alastair Stewart- CarolineKerr- and so many Satelite truck engineers-technical co-ordinators- field editors-video producers.
Leaving all that behind in 2005 sept due to age,before the law changed to greener pastures in becoming Head of Sound & Broadcast Trainer at a major broadcast hire facilities company,setting up a department,purchasing and updating technical facilities,liaising with production companies and sorting out technical queries over the phone with distant clients.Writing up technical procedures for staff handbooks,ensuring that Sound Equipment is up to full specification its still a very busy Michael Parkin that thrives on the buzz of Broadcasting.Its a great life.
We must not forget more well known ITN reporters,newscasters and journalists Carol Barnes whom i share my birth date with and Selina Scott- Pamela Armstong- Anne Lucas- Ann Diamond whom years ago would do weekend shifts from Central News Birmingham for ITN news i well remember a long door step wait for Elizabeth Taylor with Ann whom was over whelmed working as a reporter for the national news coverage for ITN- David Rose was another Giles Smith whom was an industrial correspondent, whom looked very similar to me,and one day we were at Dennis Healeys beautiful Sussex home, we the crew had arrived early, setting up for the interview, Dennis asked me what questions are you going to ask me,i looked in amazment,he thought i was Giles Smith, whom then arrived by taxi from Brighton station.
Moving on with the times and changing world of Broadcast Facilities Hire Companies having trained so many new company recruits into being Professional Sound Recordist?s the digital age of Sound Devices 744T hard drive recording device and Digital Wireless Microphone?s from Sony Broadcast distributed by Total Audio Solutions where I have spent hours purchasing new equipment and dealing with SQN in the Isle of Man and putting ideas forward for better facilities on ENG Electronic News Gathering Audio Mixers from years working in the field I hope they will put my suggestions into the next new model SQN mixer with its excellent PPM Meters which I prefer to others flashing LED?s on Sound Mixers.
With my love and enthusiasm of training students after such an extensive Broadcast career dating back to 1960 it was with delight to be invited to train students and become a Principal Technical Officer in a new 9 million pound development for a university where they have HD High Definition TV Studio with Panasonic P2 Camera?s on Vinten Tripod Pedestals with PortaPrompt and Kinoflow Parabeam Studio Lights on dimmers with studio talkback audio mixing console and wireless microphones.
Tape less production studio on P2 Cards and Server Based Technology with High Speed Data Links to an online editing facility with Avid and Final Cut Pro is offering the students excellent training facilities for the future in television production. I have seen dramatic changes in technology from quarter inch tape and film recording for TV News Bulletin?s and optical tracks to U-matic VT recordings to the first RCA ENG Camera and Sony 330 camera?s with a large BVU recorder that the sound man carried around the war zones like a brick on your shoulder to the Sony Betacam with tape in the camera to Panasonic DVC Pro at ITV News on Camera and Sound to Panasonic P2 tape less system with Stereo Sound and Surround Sound in 5.1 & 7.1
The High Definition TV Broadcasts are stunning since 405 lines to 625 lines from Black and White TV to Colour TV and the start of BBC 2 and my happy days of Alexandre Palace in North London with the BBC News Television Service for 10 years to 31 years at ITN now part of ITV and the overnight shifts driving round the countryside as hire of service crew from ITN working for GMTV setting up audio rigs and wireless microphones for the GMTV Breakfast News.To meeting Michael Parkinson the day he signed for ITV Chat Show now he?s moving on from the photo seen above.
Every job seems to require more use on Wireless Microphones and the crew carrying more equipment with lots of programmes being created on tighter shooting budgets with a Camera Operator Producer doing the sound with wireless microphones strapped to the camera. The more channels of television and the world wide web internet and TV news online more stations less budgets. So many ex colleagues from ITN ITV news have changed channels some to Algerzeera in Doha.
Multi-skiller?s as Camera/Director Shoot and Edit for TV News with satellite links and satellite phones and rigging the IFB and lights on your own with constant hops on/off planes around the globe they seem to run out of the annual hours working agreement and finish in October leaving the base crews to sweep up the rest of the years work that?s what they call a Senior Camera Person sitting at home with the firms Camera Car. Whatever?s next I wonder.
Well known anchor on all ITN news bulletins. Carol joined as a reporter in
1976 in ITN Wells Street London News Studio. She went on to anchor all ITN's main news bulletins including News at Ten, and was named Newscaster of the Year in 1984. Carol rejoined the news team for the war in Iraq as one of the main presenters on the 24-hour ITV News Channel. Carol had a long relationship with former Foreign and Commonwealth Office minister Denis MacShane . Carol then married Nigel Thompson an ITN cameraman but they separated in 1999 after 17 years together. Michael Parkin staff Sound Recordist for ITN worked with and alongside Carol in the TV studio and on location including with her husband Nigel Thompson Cameraman and Nigels father also was an ITN news cameraman living in Brighton. I remember sitting at an evening meal in Brighton whilst covering one of the Political Party Conferences and evey one was celebrating Carols birthday in fact we share the exact birth date and year. Carol recently in 2008 was filming a documentary about the fallen TV reporter Ed Mitchell found living homeless in Brighton
HIGH DEFINITION TELEVISION 1080/50i
Training BA & MA students at University in FILM & TV Production - Tapeless Workflow onto Server.
Control Room with 50 inch plasma multi-image monitor.
Control Room Record/Replay/Final Cut Pro and Graphics/ Adjacent room 32 seat Final Cut Pro Fibre Channel on 5 of machines.
High Definition 4 Camera TV Studio with Portaprompt - Wireless Microphones - Boom - Vision Mixing - Green Screen - Final Cut Pro editing - Kinoflow Studio Lighting-Broadcast PPM Sound Desk- Location Broadcasts Camera Kits 1080i HD Cameras - Location Stereo Mixers - Wireless Microphones - Dedo and Diva Light Kits -Tracks - Dollies -Jibs - Glidecam all under the supervision of Broadcast Professionals.
BENTLEY & MORGAN
Bentley our 4 year old Newfoundland with our baby girl Newfoundland MORGAN approaching 6 months old sitting in Michael's favourite spot on the Esplanade on SIDMOUTH DEVON seafront OCTOBER 2008.