Meet the team | Kate Parry
What is your role at IMG and how long have you been at the company?
What does your role entail?
My main job role as a Junior Director is to direct a great looking programme for the viewer at home, from all over the world from our golf OBs. This means ensuring all cameras are positioned correctly, directing over 15 live cameras at a time, and covering as much golf as possible.
What drew you to work at IMG and specifically within production?
I had always heard great things about working for IMG, and had a keen interest in the company after reading “What they don’t teach you at Harvard business school”. I always knew I would love to work in broadcast in some capacity, and after completing my NCTJ in journalism, it was clear to me that broadcast journalism was the way I wanted my career to go.
Share a bit about your journey from starting as a European Tour Productions commercial executive at 19 to becoming the first female director of the European Tour Productions World Feed at 26?
I’ve always been a fan of all kinds of sports. Growing up, we were a really sporty family, watching mainly Liverpool FC play or the major golf tournaments with my dad. I’ve always known I’d love to work in TV in some capacity, but never really knew which career path to take until I started working as an Intern with ETP’s executive team at IMG. For two months, I experienced all the different parts of ETP, from non-live production, to the commercial team, live production and even tried a screen test audition for Season Pass (safe to say my career in presenting did not take off!).
As much as I enjoyed learning the role of a commercial exec, after experiencing some elements of live production, I knew that was a role I was more suited to and excited to be a part of. One week after my internship finished, a job in the live production team became available, which I was successful in, and I was then the newest AP to join the team.
For the last 7 years, I have worked my way up the live production ladder, from Stats, to PA’ing, Graphics Producing, VT producing and sub mix directing. Learning and absorbing all elements on site from week to week has been extremely key in my progression, and in the last couple of months I was offered the opportunity to become the first female director of the world feed at the ISPS Handa.
What motivated you along the way?
We have a great team of people around us at Tour Productions, as we are away from home working for many weeks of the year, we all help each other from week to week to achieve our best. Knowing that no female had ever directed the feed was a big motivation for me – it was one of my main career goals for the last couple of years, working in such a male dominated sport. When I first joined, I never imagined I would be the first, but after years of hard work and commitment to the job, I’m so pleased that I can say that I was.
Stepping into the role of the first female director in the European Tour Productions World Feed, how do you approach this opportunity, and what positive influence do you hope to leave for the women who come after you in your field?
This was an opportunity I was ready to grab with both hands and put all the years of work into practice. Being in a male dominated industry, it has been a privilege to be the first female directors voice that our camera operators at ETP have heard. Live sport can be very tough and intense at times, but I would pride myself on having the ability to keep calm in situations that come my way, which on talkback is key to those on the ground and will in turn lead to a better programme. I have always been a big believer in if you work hard, you will get rewarded, and I’m very proud of what I have achieved so far at ETP and hope this encourages any woman after me to achieve their best in any production role.
Looking ahead, you are set to direct two more DP Tour events in 2023, which is a remarkable achievement. Could you tell us about the significance of these events and what they mean to you professionally?
For me, directing two of the biggest golfing events in South Africa is a personal milestone of achievement for me. Firstly, because they are the start of the 2024 season, in which I am extremely happy to set the tone for the rest of the year going forward, and secondly, these events in SA were some of my very first when I joined ETP, so it is a personal achievement to look at where I started and how far I have come in those 7 years.
The media and production industry are constantly evolving, are there any trends or advancements in your field that you find particularly exciting or impactful?
Over the last couple of years, there have been so many advancements in golf that have been great. One of my personal favourites being that we have mixed gender live golf events in the DP World Tour schedule, which I love to watch or be a part of the live production. Another trend that I think is great is the collaboration between a couple of different sports, such as golf and formula one. I think it’s great to see sportsmen who are the best in their fields try their hand at other sports and provide a new, exciting way of encouraging fans to engage in other sports they wouldn’t necessarily watch.
What is your biggest achievement at IMG?
There have been many personal achievements for me at IMG, but becoming the first female director of the world feed definitely tops that list!
What advice would you give to someone trying to enter the production industry?
I was extremely green to TV and sports broadcasting when I started at ETP, so you don’t necessarily need lots of experience – just have an open mind, and an eagerness to learn and absorb as much as you can!
What song do you have on repeat? Charlie Brown – Coldplay
What’s your favourite sporting event in the calendar? Golf aside – It has to be the Grand National- we go every year!
Favourite Movie? Pretty Woman – Can’t beat a classic!