21 Feb 2018





21 Feb 2018

SAE Creative Media Institute is pleased to welcome musician and audio engineer Lora Thompson to the SAE audio teaching team.

Lora is excited to begin working with the students at SAE.

‘I have long term plans to work on the live sound component in the SAE offering. I’m looking forward to getting back in a studio environment, and passing on those skills,’ she said.

Lora comes to SAE Auckland with a wealth of knowledge and over 10 years experience as an audio engineer. She has spent the last four years as the Audio-Visual Technician and Crew Leader at the Melbourne Convention Exhibition Centre, which has 38 function spaces and regularly held crowds of over 5,000.

Excited to be home in New Zealand, Lora is looking forward to her new role with SAE, and spending more time on vocals and bass with her alt-rock band, Cheshire Grimm. The band opened for Ladi6, Devilskin and supported Cherie Currie (from Runaways) on her world tour around NZ, toured Australia/New Zealand with Skinny Hobos in 2017 and has released two Eps, Cheshire Grimm, (2015) and Rain or Shine (2017). 

‘SAE is the best audio school in the country and I have wanted to teach here for a long time. Plus, my band was getting booked for more and more gigs in New Zealand so I was flying home so much anyway. Then this role came up so I didn’t hesitate to move back.’

Lora is actively involved in promoting equality for women in the industry. She helped set up the NZ Women’s Music Industry Facebook group and is involved in other initiatives to help promote the audio industry as a viable career for women.

After working in the industry for over a decade she said things had improved, but there was still a long way to go to get more women working in the industry.

SAE Auckland is committed to addressing the gender imbalance and runs a series of initiatives to highlight a career in audio engineering for New Zealand women. One such initiative is ChicMix, which launched in 2016. The popular yearly event is a practical, beginner audio workshop for women, run by women. 

Coming from a musical family, and attending numerous music festivals with her family as a child, Lora has always played in bands, but it wasn’t until she left high school she realised she was serious about a career in audio engineering.

‘When I was 17 a receptionist job came up at a sound company and I took it. Once I was around audio engineering, I realised I wanted to learn more about the technology and it progressed from there. Then I decided to further peruse that through studying for a Bachelor of Media Arts (Hons) through Wintec, and began working in audio for theatre while I was studying. I never looked back.’

SAE Campus Director, Dr Suzette Major, says: ‘It’s fantastic to have Lora join the team. With her experience in audio engineering and live sound experience, as well as her interest in developing her career in tertiary teaching, I am pleased to welcome Lora to SAE.’