If your band is performing, you need lights to add life to your show. The right lighting does more than just illuminate your act to the audience. It also has the power to add intrigue, heighten audience emotion, and enhance the music. If you've never set up lights for a show before, here are the five basic questions you need to consider:
1. How Many Spotlights Do You Want?
If you just want a simple setup, you may be fine with a single spotlight. That can work perfectly for a singer songwriter, or you can use a single spotlight to highlight the front man in a band. In other cases, you may want spotlights on all the members of the band.
Once you've decided how many spotlights you want, you need to decide where to put them. Typically, they can be placed at the front of the stage or hanging from the ceiling over the stage. These two positions help create different moods.
2. Do You Want Backlighting?
After thinking about spotlights, you need to consider backlighting. As suggested by the name, backlighting comes from the back of the stage. It doesn't illuminate you to the audience in the same way that spotlights or other lights in the front do.
Instead, backlights create depth. They make your band look three dimensional on the stage. They can also create a halo type effect around you.
Finally, if you don't have a background, you may want to consider using backlighting in multiple colours. That creates an interesting effect against a solid-coloured backdrop, while also still adding depth.
3. Do You Want to Involve House Lights?
House lights are lights that shine on the audience, also called the house. These lights aren't totally necessary, but they can create cool effects. In particular, shining floodlights or spotlights on the crowd at various points during your set can help increase engagement and boost excitement. If you're on a budget, even flashing the house lights on and off at various intervals can work.
4. Do You Want a Lighting Manager?
If you want to shine house lights at various points during the show, you may want to hire a lighting manager or director. These professionals can alter spotlights and backlights throughout the show. This allows you to have different lighting effects during different songs, or even during different parts of the same song.
Depending on your setup, the lighting manager may physically move lights around, or they may run the light board during the event. The light board is a series of switches designed to control the lighting setup you've designed for your show.
5. Do You Want to Outsource Your Lighting Needs?
Finally, you need to decide how much help you may need to outsource. If the venue has lights, you may be able to do your own lights or just hire a lighting manager to help you during the show. On the other hand, if the venue doesn't have lights, you may just want to bring a few of your own or hire a few lights.
If you want to create a really professional looking well lit show, you may prefer working with an event lighting professional. These masters can work with the existing fixtures in a venue, or they can bring in their own lighting. They can also help you with lighting design and execution that works with the beat and rhythm of your songs.
For more tips on setting up lights at your first concert, contact an event lighting professional from a company near you. They can guide you in the right direction.