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Testing….testing….1, 2, 3: How to Avoid Audio-Visual Mishaps

Amanda Monroe talking on stage

Published on May 27, 2019

Shaw Centre’s Account Manager, Amanda Munroe has been in the business of selling events for several years. She believes if great audio/visual (A/V) services can make a meeting shine, then it’s easy to see why not paying enough attention to A/V might mean your event could fail to achieve its objectives. Based on Amanda’s years of experience playing host to stellar events of all sizes, she is pleased to provide some tips to keep your A/V needs and your event on track:

Find out if your venue has a professional, in-house A/V supplier. If they do, it’s usually most cost-effective and easy to work with them. In our case, Freeman provides A/V services and can expedite many requests because most of our rooms already contain their equipment. In addition, Freeman can offer exclusive access to certain perks, such as the Centre’s digital signage program.

If there is no in-house supplier, it’s still important to go with a professional supplier whom you feel you can trust and work well with. There are many companies that offer A/V services, but they are not all equal. Check references diligently to be sure the one you select comes highly recommended.


Remember that A/V is about more than just sound. Among the many ways you can customize your event at the Shaw Centre is through lighting. Whether you illuminate your sets or banners with energy-efficient LED lights, or choose to implement a bold lighting wall, there are many options geared to every budget.

Timing is everything. It’s crucial to build time into your schedule for equipment setup as well as testing to make sure your A/V system is installed properly and microphone and lighting levels are correct. It’s even better if you can allocate time for run-throughs of presentations, as speakers may have a slide deck or videos to accompany their oral presentation. There’s nothing worse than having to stop partway through to correct a technical glitch that could have been avoided with sufficient testing beforehand.

If your budget allows, it’s a great idea to find out what stunning effects your chosen A/V supplier can offer to make your event unforgettable and inspiring. Scenic design and room décor are services that Freeman provides at Shaw centre, creating eye-catching hardwall sets, acrylic sets and even glass block panel sets with inset logos. Draping is also part of the visual solution; consider different types including spandex sails, custom printed silks and fibre-optic curtains, to tailor a space to your needs.

Don’t forget such essentials as budgeting for WiFi, essential for today’s gatherings. Not only do participants appreciate the chance to stay connected while at an event, they might just give your brand a huge boost by posting inspirational take-aways on social media. Another line item to consider is renting additional space for A/V equipment storage, if necessary (you won’t have this cost with an in-house supplier).

We hope these tips will ensure success with your next event. Amanda knows in our ever-changing technological world, the importance of AV technology is vital.  At the Shaw Centre every event space is a blank canvas which can be customized in many ways to make a gathering truly unique and impactful. Harnessing the power of effective audio/visual services is one of the best ways to help ensure the money you spend on your event is worthwhile.