Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham with some of last year’s Breakthrough Talent Award winners
UK - Production Futures is an initiative created to provide opportunities for young people to learn, train, network, and develop real careers in production across every area of the Live Event, Music, Touring, Festival, Theatre, TV, Broadcast and Film industries.
At its most recent On Tour roadshow event in Manchester, which was opened by Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham, chief executive Hannah Eakins announced the expansion of the Production Futures Breakthrough Talent Awards to better reflect the wide range of roles and skill sets required across the production industry. These rely heavily on transferable skills such as computer science, architecture, engineering and business management, as well those associated with the traditional event-management, music, TV, film, media and live technical fields. Hannah explains:
“The Production Futures initiative originated as The Breakthrough Talent Awards and they have been a fundamental part of our mission from day one. This expanded format takes us back to the roots of Production Futures and the reasons why we wanted to recognise young talent. We began as a very small awards ceremony in 2016 that sought not only to mark the achievements of young people in the production industries, but to inspire the next generation coming through.
“Since those early days, with the support of key industry partners, we’ve grown to become a community for real opportunity - the last six years have produced 22 winners of the Breakthrough Talent Awards who are now occupying significant roles at a wide range of companies, or have become successful, in-demand freelancers with the skills and confidence to meet any challenge. As our Production Futures ambassadors, they continue to be a huge part of our community and we are proud of all they have gone on to achieve.
“We always wanted to open up the breakthrough talent awards categories across all aspects of entertainment production because transferable skills and employability are the most important focus of our initiative.”
As well as expanding the remit of the awards, Hannah also announced a new format: “When we were developing the idea for expanding this year’s awards with our sponsors, we had the idea of basing the ‘prize’ around ‘opportunity and access for the young nominees rather than the traditional ‘glass-trophy’ way of recognising achievement. This met with a positive response from sponsors who saw the value in taking an active role in forging relationships with emerging industry talent.
“This year’s awards will see not only an expansion of the categories available for nomination but also an exciting new format which sees category sponsors judging the results of tasks or projects to be completed by the nominees. As well as the title of Breakthrough Talent Award winner, the successful nominees will benefit from direct contact with the sponsor of their award. We are excited to be able to offer such a unique opportunity to newcomers and give them access to world leading professionals and brands at the beginning of their careers.”
There are 20 categories in the expanded Production Futures Breakthrough Talent Awards, and the ceremony will take place at Production Park, Wakefield on 28 September, during another On Tour event.
For complete details of the awards and how to put forward nominations, visit:

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