In the past two posts of this series we have looked at the best festival location and utilities installed at outdoor events. For this post I am going to focus on the sound, lighting and staging issues. We are going to look at what might be expected of you as the organiser and things you might need to know.
Sound & lighting hire is what Onion Audio specialise in. We also provide staging for smaller events. Its often wise to book your stage be
fore you acquire sound and lighting hire quotes. This way, your sound and lighting hire company will be able to specify a system that uses the structure of your stage. This will give more accurate quotes and could save you money. If your stage is in a marquee structure, the same rule applies. Book your marquee, stage & then sound and lighting.
Both staging and marquee structures take many man hours to erect so make sure you plan plenty of time for these structures to be built. Your hire company will be able to advise on this. The other consideration is that no work can be started by any other companies until the marquee/stage has been built so its not unusual for a stage or marquee to be ready 4 – 5 days before the event and not taken down for 2 – 3 days later. Having enough time on site for all this
construction is essential for the smooth running of your event.
When acquiring sound and lighting quotes its advisable to give as much detail of the event as possible. Audience size, location of the event, style of music & level of bands performing are all essential. Any riders you have received from acts booked should also be included to get the most accurate quotes. If your budget is tight, asking for two price structures is often advisable. This way you can get a quote for a smaller sound system and lighting rig and a larger package. This will help when comparing quotes from different companies. Always include a deadline in quote requests. Doing this guarantees you will be able to sit down at a certain date and look at all options.
Requesting all service providers do a site visit is also an excellent idea. Their experience in events will help them notice things you may have missed. The last thing you want is problems arising that jeopardise the event.
Personal recommendations from friends or business associates that have experience in putting on similar events is always a good idea. Working with a company that has worked on similar events is always reassuring. If you have time, try to go to events they are working at. See the equipment and staff in action and ask yourself if its what you have imagined for your event.
Interested in what the bands at your event might ask for? Check this post on what is a band rider.