Julian Jordaan from Urban Edge Church in Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa brings us this great octagonal dot stage design. (Originally posted July 2014)
Their stage has two 45 degree angles on the both sides and the roof is also angled—making stage design a challenge. The design they had before this new design made the stage look and feel smaller than it actually was. They needed to at height and width to the stage with this design. The design that they felt would best suit their application was par can lit blocks.
They first created a mock up of the design in order to get buy-in from Leadership. They were happy with the concept… but not 100% sold. They reworked the placement and came up with something that they felt was elegant, uncluttered, and manageable.
They used 3.2mm hardboard for the blocks. They had them pre-cut to 400x400mm blocks. They needed 92 blocks in total. Then they had 16mm MDF cut into various lengths. They used a nail gun to fix the blocks to the MDF lengths.
The gap between the blocks was important to them as they didn’t want too much color mixing in the event that they wanted each vertical row of blocks to display different colors. The pre-made up rows of blocks were then drilled into the back wall at the 70mm spacing mentioned. In this arrangement, it created 24 vertical lines of blocks.
Then they purchased 24 LED Par 32’s which they fixed above each row and shone it down on the blocks. This created the effect of having them backlit – it was important to have the lights at such an angle that the LED’s aren’t seen directly.
After having the rounded design for 6 months, Julian decided to change it up a little without spending loads of money. He therefore turned the squares into octagon’s by spraying them black over a stencil he made with the off cuts of hardboard. He then used 60w light bulbs and fixed them into the spaces between the blocks. These were wired up to an open space in their dimmer packs and patched it into Light Jockey. The effect was that of a crowd blinder… but for a fraction of the cost.
At low light, the bulbs glowed orange/red and when at full power they glowed white. This gave their lighting designer’s some nice dynamics, especially in slower songs. The rest of the fixtures were already part of their current design.