August 9, 2018

Nathan Passafume: Graduate Story – Recording Arts & Show Production

Nathan Passafume: Graduate Spotlight – Recording Arts & Show Production

Meet Nathan Passafume, a graduate of the Recording Arts & Show Production program at F.I.R.S.T Institute. Nathan actually moved to Florida to pursue Forensics, but soon realized that it did not meet his interests. After countless hours of chemistry and math, he decided to go back to his family roots and pursue an education in music. F.I.R.S.T. Institute drew him in with its comfortable feel, and from there he started on a career path that he enjoyed. Let’s check to this Student Spotlight.




From Forensics to F.I.R.S.T.

Nathan moved to Florida from Indiana to study Forensics at UCF. After putting in work that he realized he was no longer interested in, he decided to back away from science and dive into his family roots. Nathan grew up in a family of music. His parents were heavily into musical theater and showtunes. From a young age, Nathan could be found helping his parents in arts programs handing people tools, running up scaffold, handing people gel frames, running cables, and even running spotlight. Nathan decided to take this background and create a career that he enjoyed. Nathan turned to F.I.R.S.T. Institute.

A “Home-y” Environment

When Mr. Nathan Passafume first walked into F.I.R.S.T. Institute, he really enjoyed the small class size and the personal, hands-on relationship that you have with your instructor. Nathan credits John LaRosa, a Recording Arts & Show Production instructor at F.I.R.S.T. Institute Nathan explains that this particular instructor took Nathan’s talents and molded him into something he didn’t even know was possible. John pushed Nathan to thrive in his strongpoints and become the best version of himself.

Nathan mentions that he fell in love with the people at F.I.R.S.T. Institute with its friendly staff, faculty, and students. Nathan was drawn to the professional, yet “home-y” and secluded learning environment at F.I.R.S.T. that he says he couldn’t really find anywhere else.

Nathan Credits the Recording Project

Nathan mentions that his favorite project at F.I.R.S.T. Institute was a recording project where an actual band came in to record an original song. His group members were split up into assignments such as Studio Manager, A1, Playback, Pro Tools, etc. They worked as a team to contribute small individual pieces to a bigger puzzle and learn from the band along the way. Nathan appreciated being introduced to different kinds of music during this project that he had never heard before, but now has grown to love.

Making It A Career

After graduation, Nathan worked a couple of internships and freelance work before stumbling upon American Audio-Visual. Through his network, he began as a freelance hand for the company and eventually was brought on as a full-time employee. 

Why Nathan Loves the Work Environment

Nathan loves that the audio industry is an exciting place to work where he is always learning new things. The jobs are constantly different as he never is working the same gigs. Nathan has the opportunity to travel across the country and even internationally with this job doing what he loves. He credits the people he has met in the industry and how they have such a close bond sharing the same passions.


Future Goals

Nathan’s future goals include working his way up in the company, working with new hires, doing bigger shows with bigger crew, and more.

Advice from a F.I.R.S.T. Institute Graduate in Recording Arts

Nathan advises those trying to take the first step in the industry to be prepared to put in the work. You have to put in the time, you have to hustle hard. Once others start to recognize that, then you’ll experience the joy of “family” in the industry. Putting in the time and the effort will all pay off in the end.