Does Stage Lighting Really Have to Be Tricky?

By January 18, 2017July 7th, 2020Production

Lighting up a stage seems like a straight forward process, but when you get down to it, it can be downright complex! How do you handle lighting up an entire band, a preacher who stands still, a preacher who moves around a lot? Wait! Do you have windows behind the stage? Uh oh! That’s going to mess things up right?

You know, as complex as this may sound to you, with a few key points to keep in mind, you can have a well-lit stage that doesn’t distract and draws attention to the place you want the congregation to look in no time.

  1. Create Zones
    1. This is where you will map out your stage, figure out how the light falls on your stage to ensure everything is lit that is supposed to be lit – from the preacher, to the piano, to the drum set, etc.
  2. Overlap the Zones
    1. Once you have your zones mapped out, you will want to make sure your lighting is set up not only to cover each zone, but that each light overlaps the adjacent zones to ensure there are no dark spots.
  3. Decide on the Number of points you want to shine on your subject
    1. For instance, when the sun is shining straight down on us, that is considered one point lighting. So if you hang a light to shine directly on the preacher, that would be one-point lighting. Hang a light behind the preacher to fully illuminate the speaker, and you have a 2 point lighting set-up. Depending on your equipment, you could go up to a 4 point lighting system if you like.

Those are just a few quick tips for you as you look to properly light your stage. What tips do you have to help others effectively light their stage?

Cory Mansfield

coryheadshot squareCory lives in Richmond, Virginia with his wife and 3 beautiful children. He loves getting to serve local churches and pastors in his role with Salem Church Products.

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