Engine No.4 is a new events production company with an already impressive portfolio.
The Manchester-based company has already confirmed live projects across both the UK and Europe including Parklife, bluedot, Snowbombing and Depot at Mayfield.
The core team consists of four equal partners including Jon Drape (formerly of Ground Control Productions), Jim Gee (N4 Productions), Will McHugh (CC Events)and Tommy Sheals-Barrett (Back on Your Heads).
Drape felt there was an opportunity to create Engine No.4 following Global’s purchase of Ground Control Productions and Broadwick Live and later withdrawal from the festival market earlier this year. Drape planned to create a new production company with the industry knowledge and experience to fit the demands of the evolving event and festival landscape.
Drape said: “It was the ideal time for a rethink – it’s not just a rebadged version of Ground Control. We came to realise that a more streamlined business was the only sustainable option. With a desire to focus on quality events and festivals, I thought the best move forwards would be to form a new partnership of four equal shareholders and directors together, covering all elements of the industry and able to deliver more bespoke and considered solutions.”
Drape has over 30 years of experience within the live entertainment industry and has helped launch and develop many festivals in the UK. Drape is an active member of the live events community and commonly attends local authority table-tops. He is also a patron of Attitude is Everything, an Arts Council England Sector Support Organisation that works with audiences, artists and the industry to improve deaf and disabled people’s access to live music, and The Loop, a not for-profit organisation which provides harm reduction services.
Head of technical production Tommy Sheals-Barrett joins Drape as a director with over 25 years of experience, having toured the world with several artists as well as managing full technical production on shows such as the Olympic Torch Relay 2012, Parklife, Festival No.6, and bluedot.
Will McHugh is to handle sponsorship, as he already has existing relationships with clients such as Nintendo, Lynx, EE, and Carling among many others. McHugh will also be contining in his roles as Operations Director for Parklife Festival and Kendal Calling where his responsibilities include licensing, policing, planning transport infrastructure, and security.
Jim Gee joins the team as the director and head of site management. Now focused on site design and project management, recent projects have included Festival No.6, Hull City of Culture, Kendal Calling and many more. Gee also has almost 30 years of experience working in the theatre and arts industries. Gee’s most recent responsibility has been the full site management and reopening of Depot at Mayfield, Manchester’s latest 10,000 capacity arts and culture hub.
Gee said: “We’re immensely proud of what we have achieved so far at the Depot. Our remit was to transition The Warehouse Project from Store Street without losing the spirit and the vibe in a much larger venue. Working closely with our friend from DbnAudile we developed a world class production that can accommodate large scale, full production touring acts whilst simultaneously feeling, looking and sounding like the most amazing club that Manchester has ever seen. Somewhat of a challenge but something we have delivered!”
Operating from September 2019, Engine No.4 already has an impressive list of clients including Parklife, Kendal Calling, bluedot, Lost Village, Snowbombing Austria and The Warehouse Project with many more projects to be announced.