Behind the Scenes

Jean-Paul Brummer, a student in Grade 10 at, GEMS FirstPoint School — The Villa, tells us about his first-hand experience at The Assembly.

Jean-Paul Brummer, a Grade 10 student at GEMS FirstPoint School — The Villa a (FPS), had the opportunity to get hands-on, behind-the-scenes experience in talent management at the recently held The Assembly: A Global Teacher Prize Concert, held by the Varkey Foundation to thank teachers for their unsung work.

Jean-Paul had been working up to the event by developing useful skills in the entertainment industry and building his network. He started by doing sound and lighting at The Courtyard Playhouse, a KHDA-licensed performing arts centre, every Friday with a friend, and the two of them then started to do bigger events and private events.

He was also introduced to some of the team members at Virgin Radio, and he eventually plucked up the courage to approach Kris Fade’s manager and ask her about an internship. They stayed in touch and after a few weeks she started inviting Jean- Paul to private events for Virgin Radio, providing opportunities for him to work with them.

When he found out about GEMS Education’s involvement with The Assembly, Jean-Paul approached Matthew Tompkins, principal at FPS, and asked him about getting involved, which led him to the talent management opportunity.

“I’ve come away with a lot more knowledge and experience than I went in with. I learned a lot about time management; everything must be on time. Nothing can be a few minutes late otherwise the whole show will be delayed,” says Jean-Paul.

The experience has confirmed that he would like to make talent management his career, and although it is something he can study formally, he would prefer to continue growing his contacts, study a business degree, and open his own label in the future. FPS focuses on blending traditional academic education with industry-led learning and qualifications and Jean- Paul’s experience is an example of this in action.

For any students who are thinking about approaching a company in their chosen sector for an internship, Jean-Paul says: “Just do it. My mistake was not asking about opportunities sooner. You need to be confident and ask, because if you don’t then nothing happens.”