News / 3 minute read

DRPG’s Sparks Live 2023 inspires the next generation of creatives

Written by Guy Humphrey

29 November 2023

We're celebrating the success of Sparks Live, the first agency-led educational careers event in the region. Held on Thursday 16th November at our studio headquarters in Hartlebury, the event saw 110 young people from colleges and universities come together for networking, insights and advice. Sparks Live, is a Gen-Z led initiative powered by our NextGen board, aimed to inspire and equip young individuals aged 18 to 25 with the tools needed to thrive in the creative industry. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic, the Sparks educational initiative has successfully adapted, building on its achievements since the programme launched in 2019.


The day-long event was attended by students from across the UK, currently pursuing education. The morning opened with a keynote session by our CEO Dale Parmenter, titled 'Creative Industry: The State of Play’. This session delved into our founding inspiration, highlighting the indispensable role played by young creative talent in the company's remarkable growth. Exploring the diverse arms of the business and providing insights into the reasons behind our introduction, the discussion also addressed the critical aspect of sustainability moving forward.

Moreover, it delved into the government's perspective on the industry, with further exploration into what industry peers are observing and, crucially, where opportunities lie in the coming 5, 10, and 15 years. Board members were also called upon for their insight in a myth-busting panel discussion with insights into the industry and creative opportunities going forward.

Sparks Live News Post - 2Sparks Live News Post - 7Students participated in bespoke SPARKS Workshops during the afternoon, covering the science and art of storytelling, the power of creative collaboration, how to ignite creativity through AI, why good design matters, and getting to know your own spark. Additionally, attendees had the opportunity to explore our creative studios with an inspiring tour of the extensive facilities across the 4.2-acre site.

Sparks Live 2023 ended with a closing panel session on ‘Re-imagining your Spark.’ The informal discussion highlighted a wide range of our team members who have pursued varied careers and roles, reassuring delegates that their subject choices don’t define them.

Liz Stratten, a senior lecturer from University College Birmingham said, “To have such access into a creative business like DRPG has been amazing. And, for the event to have been designed by 18-25 year olds is important for our students to be able to see what can be done at this age and the value that’s being put onto their voices, has been brilliant. I think everyone’s going to apply for a job.”

Sparks Live News Post - 3Sparks Live News Post - 6Next Gen Board Member Amara Betts Patel commented, “The goal for Sparks Live was to inspire local young people to be aspirational when thinking about their careers. We wanted to give our attendees a flavour of what it’s like to work in the creative industry, especially as part of DRPG."

“We can definitely say we achieved that goal. It’s been extremely rewarding to see everyone get stuck into our workshops and we hope to see them again for future Sparks Live events."

Head of Learning and Engagement, Elaine Voss commented, “The success of Sparks Live speaks volumes about the power of passion and potential. This event wasn't just a showcase; it was a catalyst for inspiring the next generation of creative minds. Nurturing this talent isn't just a priority; it's a fundamental investment in the future. Sparks Live has created a momentum that will propel these young individuals into the dynamic world of the creative industry, reminding us all of our creative potential.”