Show Power

How we use Electricity to Power Audio and Lighting for Live Music

Join Show Power

As a professional touring FOH audio engineer, I've had a nice career and have been lucky enough to work with a bunch of Grammy-winning and -nominated artists. But that’s not how I learned about electrical distribution!

All of this knowledge comes from years of working in production, getting hands-on training from some really great electricians.

BUT — just like learning audio or lighting on the job — the fast workflow of live music production makes the stage a poor classroom.

Getting a clear explanation about WHY we set up our electrical distribution system the way we do, and (very importantly) HOW it affects us in live music production, is really tough.

And that’s exactly what this course offers.


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To successfully manage electricity for live music, we need to know WHY we do it like we do.

Who's this course for?

Here’s a quick test to see if Show Power is right for you:

*Do you know the answers to all the questions below?
If so, maybe you need a more involved technical manual. If not, proceed to the next question.

*Do you want to add this knowledge to your skill-set?
Well, then, this is the perfect way to do it!

Some of the questions this course answers:

  • How, exactly, do I calculate how much power I need for a show?
  • Why do we see 208 VAC on 120 VAC distros, and how is it wired?
  • How do we step-up or -down Voltage?
  • Where do electrons naturally want to flow, and how do we utilize this?
  • What's the main difference in Power Distros between the USA and Europe (besides normal operating Voltage)?
  • What size Generator do we need to power a small (or large) production?
  • How much current does a 100 Amp Three-Phase service deliver (hint: it's more than 100 Amps)?
  • How many degrees separate the legs in Three-Phase power?
  • How do Power Plants generate Three-Phase power?
  • What happens to the voltage with a long power run, and how does it affect our current draw?
  • What kind of current CAN'T pass through a transformer (and why does this matter to audio engineers)?
  • How do we measure voltage in an outlet?
  • How much Voltage should measure across Ground and Neutral on our PDs?
  • When making any electrical connection, what's the first conductor to make contact?
  • What type of device uses a slo-blo fuse?
  • How does Electromagnetic Induction most affect live music production?

Use these tools to check your knowledge

*Math Worksheet

Use the Math Worksheet to review the equations we solve throughout the course.

*Practical Exercise

Calculate the full power needs for a small production, including audio and lighting systems.


Each video in this course has a corresponding quiz — it’s great way to check your knowledge!

Course Curriculum

Available in days
days after you enroll

"This training was absolutely incredible. I spent about an hour a day for 10 days and learned more from [Live Sound Essentials] than I did in 2 years of college in audio."

- Ethan Helling, North Dakota, USA

"The Production Academy is an awesome online resource that provides clear and reliable information on all the technical things your need to know to work in Live Sound or the Touring industry."

- Karrie Keyes, Monitor Engineer for Pearl Jam and Executive Director for

"Scott, I have been mixing live sound since 1998 and I have never seen such a well-done educational platform as you have created. I audited this course to determine if it was right for our church sound technicians and it passed with flying colors."

- Lloyd Richardson, Charleston, South Carolina, USA

"Scott is able to capture the nuances of what we do in the studio and scale it up arena size."

- Ariel Rechtshaid, Grammy award-winning producer for Haim, Madonna, Usher, Vampire Weekend, Adele, and more

Your Instructor

Scott Adamson
Scott Adamson

I'm Scott, founder of The Production Academy and a longtime audio engineer.

Frequently Asked Questions

When does the course start and finish?
It is a completely self-paced online course - you decide when you start and when you finish.
How long do I have access to the course?
How does lifetime access sound? After enrolling, you have unlimited access to this course for as long as you like - across any and all devices you own.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

Ready to get started?