Virgin are running a new series of events called ‘Virgin Disruptors‘ in which a selection of experts come together with an audience to discuss a hot topic particular to their industry. For the first event, hosted by Colin Murray at the Virgin 40th Anniversary Exhibition in Victoria House in London, the topic was ‘Has tech killed the music industry?’, featuring Imogen Heap, Ian Hogarth of Songkick, Trevor Skeet of Spotify, and Nic Jones of Vevo, with Amanda Palmer, Will.I.Am, Zoe Keating and Scooter Braun joining via Google Hangouts video conferencing.

When I’m shooting somewhere new there’s always a part of me that’s a little anxious about the architecture of the room and particularly how it’s lit so I’ll try and get an advance look if I can, but this was to be set up on the night so I had to wait and see. But it turned out great. It was arranged ‘in the round’ with the guests in the centre and audience and screens surrounding them, giving me plenty of great angles on the discussion, lots of fun finding shots everywhere. It was also being filmed for live transmission over Google Hangouts by StreamUK so it was lit already, lovely stuff!

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It was also a great evening to be there for anyway, and you can see the whole trying yourself in the Disruptors video; it stayed civil but there were most definitely differences of opinion. For my own part I think the large record companies have been particularly slow on the uptake with the digital revolution. I see other industries embracing it early and having real success, particularly the software markets, but I think there’s been a reluctance on the part of the big music companies to adjust their pricing strategies to accommodate how people pay for music these days. I look at how people like Trent Reznor and OK Go! have adapted and there’s proof there’s an emerging new way, but the middle ground has yet to be found for most.

Well that was deep! Here’s some more photos from the evening, and be sure to check out my Virgin 40th Anniversary Exhibition gallery too. Thanks for visiting!

You can find out more about my event photography here.