If you are holding anything more than the smallest gathering, you probably have a few vendors providing event services. As your event increases in scale, you may suddenly be coordinating with tens (or hundreds) of suppliers. If your event has multiple dates or locations, your vendors multiply!
This is where it becomes helpful to get as many services as possible from your suppliers. A single company that provides many related services will be of great help. A company that has contacts with every local event-related business can additionally coordinate other tangentially-related services for you.
Event Coordination is a full-time job!
Imagine an outdoor wedding. You’ve decided who will attend, where to have it and, who will provide catering. But now you have to sort through tent rentals, DJ services, tables and chairs, decor, and lighting. Suppose you handle all of that only to get to your special day and be told that the caterer tripped the only circuit. Now your DJ can’t play and your guest’s can’t see in your tent.
Consider a large concert event. Your band demands a huge stage with a bunch of instruments (backline) and you have 8000 people coming who need to hear the band. The show goes into the evening so the stage needs to be lit up, and the venue has no electrical power. You need fencing to channel the attendees where they need to go, and security staff to make sure there is no trouble. Portable restrooms and parking lot lighting are of course required, as well as illumination for vendor tents…
LSC Production Manager Jonathan Coordinates Generators with Temp-Power
Associated Event Services
Enter The Lighting & Sound Co. After being onsite for thousands of events, we know everyone in town who provides top-quality event services. We also have partners nationwide to assist with rare requests or distance events. It helps that we are often one of the first to arrive and last to leave. We can either provide what you need or know the best providers in the area. Make one call and let us handle your event technology needs, so you can focus on other aspects.
We will be glad to provide lighting, sound, AV, drape, and coordinate the best mobile stages, generators, band backline, tents, security fencing, multi-site logistics, and anything else you would rather not have on your plate. Rest assured that we vet all of our event partners and only work with vendors who offer the same top quality standards and reliability we are known for.
The best event partners make for smooth events
If you need assistance with event technology or other event services, get in touch and we’ll be glad to assist. (804) 893-5066 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Want to learn more about event technology? Check out one the articles below!
A guide for event planners, coordinators, and brides.
It almost goes without saying, but you’d be surprised how many folks don’t lead with the location of their event. Production companies need to know the location of the venue for multiple reasons. The primary reason is knowing what the layout of the venue is. This helps with costing services and knowing what will work in the space. Any kind of custom design needs exact dimensions, so being able to get a look at the venue is often crucial to the success of the design team.
Why your lighting company knowing the exact date is important
Lighting companies also need to know when your event is. It isn’t unusual for a lighting company to book events several months, or even a year in advance. While most lighting companies can service multiple events in a day, every company has its capacity. An exact date is the only way to determine for sure that equipment and labor resources will be available for your event. Try to make sure that this information is included in your initial request for services.
Why you need to get your lighting company an up-to-date schedule.
Lighting equipment can sometimes take longer than anything else to set up. Lighting companies have a pretty good idea of how long a service will take based on past experience. They use this information to get the most out of their equipment and crew during a somewhat lopsided work week. Corporate events and meetings often happen during the week. However, a large majority of events take place on the weekends. Lighting companies service all types of events year-round, but most event companies see a huge boost in activity during the fall season. This leaves them with a large amount of events, all happening at once. Because of this, event companies stick to pretty strict schedules that can get pretty tight. It is important to update all of your vendors with any schedule changes, to prevent any issues.
3. Event Type/Theme
After providing lighting services for thousands of events, we’ve learned a couple things. We like to handle different types of events differently, and with the care they deserve. Because of this, we’ve developed several departments that specialize in different event areas. It’s useful to know early on what type of event we’re dealing with so that we can get it in the hands of the right event expert. Chances are, we’ve dealt with a very similar event, and can call upon that knowledge when designing your event.
4. Total Attendance
Knowing total attendance is important for a few reasons. For a simple wedding in a hotel ballroom, your production company probably doesn’t need to know this information. But for larger events, especially where there’s sound involved, be sure to mention this number. More people not only create more background noise that the system needs to project over, they also obstruct the sound by physically being there. Knowing how many people will be there helps audio technicians bring the correct equipment. This ensures that your event audio will be heard loud and clear.
6. Power Requirements/Availability
Your lighting company needs to know more than just the power available at the venue; they also need to know what other vendors expect to use it. Caterers often require a large amount of power for heaters, and appliances such as coffee makers or food warmers. Many large-scale coffee makers require an entire circuit to themselves. In fact, everyone from the DJ to the photo booth could require power. Insufficient electrical availability could mean an important aspect of your event might go dark or without power.
7. Onsite AV or Lighting Technician
For many events, lighting is basically just a decor item. The lighting team will unload, set up the lighting, and take off. For events with simple uplighting, drape, or string lighting, this is the way to go. Although a technician is not always needed, some event coordinators prefer to have one standing by for the very rare chance that something goes wrong. However, if anything has to change during the event, you will need onsite staff. This includes everything from tying up drape pieces into gathers, to changing the color of the uplighting. The cost of this will depend on the length of time that the tech is needed, but work calls usually have 4 hour minimums.
8. Service Needs
The more you can let your lighting company know about your needs, the better. You can save a lot of time by preparing a list of the exact services you need, and the details of each service. Ultimately, many people don’t have this information in the early stages of even planning. If this is the case, save time by making this clear to all of your vendors, so you can avoid them fishing for the information.
9 . Load In Procedure
More often than not, your lighting company will already be familiar with the venue. But for unusual event spaces or private residences, it’s important that an information sheet with any relevant rules and procedures is generated not only for your lighting company, but for all of your other vendors as well. Ideally, your lighting company won’t be loading in at the same time as other vendors.
Parking is something that many people take for granted. Venues in urban areas can often have parking that is quite limited. Some event setups can take anywhere from four to eight hours, so it’s important to think about where your vendors are going to park during this time. Most lighting companies drive extended vans or box trucks, so keep in mind that there may need to be more room than usual for them to park.
11. Venue Rules
As an event planner, you are often the center of communication between other vendors. The venue is no exception. While many venues are proactive and reach out to all vendors to provide information, every experience varies. It’s important to pass any essential information down the line to your vendors. Often, the venues expect this, and rely on planners and coordinators to pass information along to vendors.
If you want to learn more about lighting, The Lighting & Sound Co. offers tons of resources for people of all knowledge levels. Reach out by phone or email to speak to a pro.
Step up your game with these underrated event lighting design techniques
Do you want your event to stand out among the rest? Of course you do. Event planners are always searching for new ways to spice up their event designs, but these five classics are timeless techniques that you might have underestimated.
A paper lantern is a lantern made of thin, brightly colored or white paper. Paper lanterns come in various shapes and sizes, and in their simplest form, they are simply a paper bag with a candle placed inside, although more complicated lanterns consist of a collapsible bamboo or metal frame of hoops covered with tough paper.
Inexpensive and beautiful, paper lanterns can be added as a complement to bistro lighting, or hung individually without and string lighting accompaniment.
Pin spotting is crucial to a successful lighting design. While it is pretty much standard, it’s important to remember why it became such a popular line item. Without pin spotting, many of the details of an event can be lost.
While they aren’t essential for daytime or brightly-lit events, pin spots should always be considered. Even if it seems like there will be enough ambient light to see, a boost from some well-placed pin spots can help decor stand out . A centerpiece washed with the same amount of light as the rest of the event space isn’t going to “pop”. Like any lighting design, it’s important that the lighting for your event is dynamic, and not just a dull wash.
Dynamic lighting leads to a dynamic event design. A subtle, single-color wash is a nice look. But, adding some pin spots, especially in a low light setting, can help keep the look of your event exciting. Ideally, you’ll want an evenly washed room that includes lighting accents to add dynamics and prevent eye fatigue.
While there are six controllable qualities of light, often in the event industry we focus focus on only four. Color, intensity, direction, and distribution are all given a lot of love. Meanwhile, the other two qualities – texture and movement – take a back seat.
Movement is an incredibly powerful tool to excite and amaze your guests. We cover the importance of movement in another article, so right now we’re focusing on the importance of texture. Texture gobos are an underutilized & affordable way of projecting texture onto any surface.
One of the best things about using gobos is that they are fairly simple for production companies to get manufactured. Along with the thousands of available designs, you can work with your production company to design your very own texture to perfectly suit your event.
There are many different materials and manufacturing processes used to create gobos. However, the two types of gobos that are most commonly used in the modern event industry steel-cut and glass. Plastic gobos are now possible with LED technology, although they are not as widely-used. With steel-cut gobos, single-color simple textures and designs are possible at an affordable price. Even custom gobos are within range for most event budgets. Glass gobos are more expensiveness than their steel counterparts, but well worth it for the range of amazing visuals they can provide for events. Glass gobos can be multiple colors, and often feature high definition images such as nebulas, photo-realistic clouds, beautiful nature scenes, star fields, and more.
Texture gobos can be used both to enhance an already beautiful space, or cover up an otherwise dull or ugly surface. Often, event designers will use texture gobos projected onto the floor from above to create amazing surface looks. That barely even dives beneath the surface of what can be done with textures.
In today’s age of LEDs, uplighting is among the most popular special event service. For your next event, keep in mind how gobos can be used to completely customize your venue, and turn a space into a magical, once-in-a-lifetime scene.
Getting to the good stuff. Special effects is a pretty broad category, so we’ll try to keep this brief. Low fog, haze, confetti, streamers, pyro, cryo, fireworks all belong on the list. These are event elements that you’ll need your venues permission for, but it’ll always be worth it
When the dust has settled and the event is over, these are the types of elements that people will remember. A confetti shot at the end of the night can leave a lasting impression. Low fog is great for reveals, entrances, and more. And a little bit of haze can go a long way.
Haze is often used at concerts to create a 3D space for lighting. Many people confuse haze with theatrical fog, but there are many differences. Both a fog and haze machine will create particulates in the air, but hazers produce a finer particulate. Haze is odorless and because it is water-based, it is not an irritant. Having particles in the air allows for an effect called “air light,” where beams from lighting instruments are visible in the air. Haze, if tastefully done, can be used for more than just concerts.
While some venues do not allow haze, it is water-based and completely harmless. Many professional haze machines are designed to not set off most types of fire alarms.
Custom Design Elements & Fabrication
One thing that event planners often don’t realize is the versatility of their local production companies. Like most event vendors, event production companies work with thousands of different clients from a wide variety of industries. Unlike many other industry companies, production companies provide completely different sets of services to different types of clients
A corporate client might have a fancy gala with uplighting and pin spotting, not unlike a wedding or special event. Or, they might need a video live stream displayed on a video wall the size of a house, and syndicated to live stream outlets such as Twich, Livestream, or Facebook live. Because of this, production companies provide services you might not expect. These might include custom set fabrication, content generation, or graphic design services related to your event.
Looking for an AV Company? We are The Lighting & Sound Company, a national design, production, and AV company based in Richmond, Virginia. We provide lighting, AV, logistical support, and design concepts for upscale events and serve a broad range of industries. Our experienced crew helps major brands and groups of all sizes conceptualize, design, and execute unique visions and successful events.
Like any AV company, we offer more than just lighting, video, and audio services. Our services also include a large range of decor lighting, fabrication and soft goods options. Because of this, we’re able to provide a “one-stop-shop” for most events.
Live Event Audio with your AV Company
Our modern audio inventory has all the elements needed for large-scale events. Most importantly, our live event audio crew has experience working in corporate events and meetings, concerts, broadcast, large-scale sporting & worship events and more.
Full-sized PA systems from multiple high-end brands, such as DB and JBL. Our crew of professional audio engineers will ensure that not a single word or note is missed.
Our audio techs have experience mixing for national and international acts from a wide range of genres. Consequently, they have the skills they need to operate in high-pressure event situations
We can field audio consoles to fit any rider, including favorites like the Venue, and standbys such as the Behringer X32.
Stage Lighting with an AV Company
Our lighting team consists of classically trained designers and experienced lighting technicians.
Turn-Key stage lighting systems including conventional and LED stage lighting, available to fit events of any scope.
Indoor and outdoor stage lighting available, we like to think of ourselves as “weather-friendly”
Conventional and LED TV Lighting available for broadcast and live streaming events. This includes Kino Flo LED lighting with adjustable color temperature for TV Stages.
Range of moving lights to fit most riders and needs. This includes both arc source and LED beam, profile, wash, and hybrid fixtures.
Effect lights for stage decor and effects also available. Strips, bricks, cycs, blinders, whatever you need to make your event outshine the rest.
Event Video and Image Magnification
Our AV team comes full equipped with any video equipment you might need.
Projectors and fast fold projection screens in all standard sizes for corporate events and meetings.
LED Video walls for concerts, corporate events, and high-visibility outdoor image magnification.
High-lumen projectors available for projection mapping and large-format projections. Perfect for corporate parties, meetings, and displays.
TVs up to 70″ for digital signage displays and AV for small breakout rooms.
Live streaming and recording options available, including live image magnification and onsite camera teams. High quality cameras will help to ensure that not even the smallest detail is missed.
We can do a lot more than just stage lighting for your event. For instance, our decor lighting is unrivaled. Along with design services, we offer a huge number of decor lighting options that will blow your event attendees away. Work with our experienced designers to craft a design. Or, come to us design-in-hand and we’ll make your vision a reality. In other words, it’s completely up to you how involved you are in the process.
Powerful wired and wireless uplighting to change the look and feel of your event space.
Bistro lighting for tent and outdoor events. String lighting overhead is the perfect way to light large areas with a warm and intimate charm.
Pin-spots to light centerpieces, or tables in low-light scenarios such as galas or holiday parties.
Custom and Texture Gobo projections are great for making your event look unique. Moreover, we have an enormous inventory of patterns that can completely change the look of the event space, or just accent it a little. For example, if you have a winter theme, you can choose from a long list of frost, snow, and other winter-themed patterns.
Soft Goods and Design Elements
In addition to being an AV Company and decor lighting wizards, we have one of the largest collections of drape in Richmond. As a result, we do a lot of custom event designs. Our creative fabrications team can help design and build a set to support events of all types.
Velour, poly premiere, banjo, and sheer draping in many sizes and colors.
Custom drape backdrops both simple and elaborate.
Custom set pieces.
Textured vacu-form plastic pieces.
Texture tiles, illuminated blocks, and other common elements available.
For party rentals & linens, check out our friends at Party Perfect
One of the best parts of fall is providing outdoor event lighting for events like Garden Glow. The first annual Maymont Garden Glow event just finished up and it was one of the coolest events to see in the city. Running for three weeks during the height of fall colors in Maymont’s Japanese Garden. Attendees were treated to magical views of the landscape bathed in colored light and tall pine trees were illuminated from below while rolling hills stood aglow. Boulders beneath the waterfall sparkled and shimmered with color-changing lighting.
The Japanese Maple in the garden was beautifully lit with a combination of blue uplighting and Spanish moss string lighting.
Environmental Difficulties of Outdoor Event Lighting
The Lighting & Sound Co is always involved early in the planning process for events like Garden Glow. Outdoor event lighting provides a number of challenges, such as weather. We provide consultation to the event organizers about technical feasibility and lighting features. For Garden Glow, the remote outdoor site location of the Japanese Gardens provides additional obstacles to the event design.
It took over 3 miles of extension cable to provide all of our waterproof LED lighting throughout the garden with power.
With many events, our event technology equipment is operating indoors in climate controlled-spaces. However, Garden Glow was quite the opposite with lighting used outdoors exposed to the full elements for more than three weeks. This necessitated the use of waterproof lighting designed to be used outdoors. (IP65) Lighting fixtures, power supply cables, and control enclosures were all weatherproof. The Lighting & Sound Co maintains an extensive stock of suitable weatherproof LED lighting fixtures.
Our event partners, Temp Power, provided power for Maymont Garden Glow
Providing Power for an Outdoor Event
Electrical power is not available in Maymont’s Japanese Garden, so generators were required. Our event partners at Temp-Power were also involved, supplying mega-silent portable generators that kept the lights on while staying quiet to avoid distracting from the tranquil ambiance of the event. Remote monitoring, standard on all Temp-Power units, kept us aware of fuel levels to prevent running out of gas.
This amazing annual event was sold out nearly every evening it was open. We are definitely looking forward to next year’s Garden Glow.
Since our inception, we’ve provided high end lighting for sports events all over the country. We’ve created designs for some pretty unique events. Our crew has crisscrossed the country with Tough Mudder, setting up obstacles made out of entertainment truss. Lighting & Sound Co. Richmond works with VCU Athletics every year on the hype video for the VCU Men’s Basketball team, and works with Bleacher Report to provide production for their Honor Bowl Event in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
An LSC project manager oversees the building of black truss obstacles for Tough Mudder X.
An LSC technician tests the “Mile High Club” in Kentucky for Tough Mudder.
Production for VCU Basketball’s Hype Video shot at The Siegel Center in Richmond, VA.
Lighting Up A Rock Wall
One of the cool clients we get to work with every year is Sports Backers. Sports Backers is a non-profit aimed at getting people more active. They put on all of the large sports events in Richmond. Some of their events include the Anthem Richmond Marathon, Dominion Riverrock, and The Monument Avenue 10k, which is the 4th largest 10k in the country.
An LSC technicians ties up cables on the complex scaffolding structure.
Boulder Bash at Dominion RiverRock involves “the most unique bouldering wall ever constructed” and is over 20 feet high, which is a fitting challenge for the nation’s largest outdoor sports and music festival. 20 men and 20 women, some of the best rock climbers in the nation, compete for cash prizes worth up to $1500. Since the final stages of competition go late into the evening, lighting is needed for climbers to see the routes and spectators to view the action. We use waterproof lighting fixtures, Chauvet Colorado 1 Quad IP and Colordash H12 IP units, to light up the outdoor area. We provide an operator during all competition times, allowing for lighting effects to run during inter-race periods.
Lighting the wall was both aesthetic and functional. High-powered LEDs places strategically out of sight-lines illuminated the path for competitors.
What’s a sporting event without an announcer to let the spectators know who is winning? We provided powered speakers, the venerable QSC K12, flown high up from the top of the structure. This position enabled everyone to hear announcements and music far across the event site.
About The Lighting & Sound Co.
The Lighting & Sound Company provides high-end sports event lighting to the East Coast. We’re here to help make sure it’s perfect. With an extensive portfolio of beautiful events, we serve sports events of all sizes. Our team has worked many high profile projects, and has experience working and integrating with major TV networks.
The Lighting & Sound Co. offers many custom design & AV solutions for events of all sizes. Take a look at our portfolio and give us a call to start designing your sports event. Our knowledgeable and friendly designers will walk you through the process. Our extended office hours mean you can reach us at almost any time of day.
If you’re interested in working with an AV company for your event, there are a couple things you should know before you start the hiring process.
What is the goal of your event?
Before you contact your the company you want to do your event AV, make sure you know what you want your event to be. Will it be a educational presentation? Will it be an engaging activity? Different equipment can drastically change how the event feels.
What are your needs vs. wants for the event?
Your basic needs may be a screen, projector, a few speakers, and a microphone, but adding small details will go a long way to help your audience stay engaged. Lighting, drape, projection mapping, and much more can all help make your event unique and fun. It’s up to you to decide how important everything on your list is, especially when budget is on the line.
How big is your event?
The size of the venue and the amount of people in the room can call for a wide range of equipment needed for the event. The dimensions of the room and the head-count should be enough for a technician to know what is required.
2 screens, face-light, and a PA flying from truss at Main St. Station in Richmond, VA
Choosing an Event AV company
After you know your plan, the next step is to choose an event AV company. The most important job of an audio visual company is to provide solutions, not products. Instead of trying to sell you equipment, they should look at your goals and needs and provide the answers that will result in a successful event. Many companies will use the same equipment, so you should make your choice based on how knowledgeable they are and how their solution fits into your budget.
Event AV can help to make your presentations unique, lighting backdrops are very versatile
You can find beautiful chandeliers in homes all across the world. They represent elegance and class in a way no other fixture can. It’s no wonder that hanging chandeliers for events has become increasingly popular. While event chandeliers are popular among those planning the event, providing chandeliers for events is difficult for many companies due to the expense of acquiring them and the delicacy of transporting them. This, however, is not an issue for The Lighting & Sound Company. We saw the writing on the walls many years ago and have not only acquired the prettiest chandeliers, but have developed ways to transport and hang them to be efficient and safe, allowing us to bring the cost down to the client!
Creating That Extra Spark
Do you feel as if your event is missing that one statement piece? Or the venue you picked is almost perfect but could use a little more spark? Chandeliers can lift your venue into the place of dreams and create memories for you and your guest forever. You will have known you chose correctly when your event is taken into the next level and the warmth and light from your chandelier is spread throughout the event venue.
The Right Style for You
When many people think of chandeliers, they think of the large crystals ones that hang in ballrooms. But the truth is there are several different styles that make picking the correct one for your event an easy task. Are you having a wedding? A rustic event? A gala? There’s a style that is right for your event. From elegant to rustic, the many styles The Lighting & Sound Company can offer will make a statement in any venue or any type of event you may be having. Below are a few examples of the several styles out there:
The Lighting & Sound Company was onsite for the Virginia state competition of VEX Robotics. This event featured challenges and other events from multiple competitors and took place at The Meadow Event Park’s Farm Bureau Center in Doswell, Virginia.
Robot Competition Fields lit by stage lighting
The VEX Robotics Competition aims to challenge students to build a robot which competes in games and engineering tasks. Students who are inspired to solve problems now might consider careers in STEM fields.
The centerpiece of this event involved six competition fields on raised platforms. It was important for the teams and audience to see the action the fields, so the event coordinators requested spotlights on the playing areas. In addition, it was important to not block sightlines with ground-support towers, so we supplied a system that hung from the roof.
Lighting consisted of 120 feet of 12″x 12″ box truss in two 60-foot spans. This supported 24 ETC Source Four Lekos for stage lighting. Also used were Chauvet Colorado 1 Quad units for wall uplighting. Additional stage effect lighting was provided by Chauvet Intimidator 375Z moving head units.
LSC Technicians assemble fixtures and cables on a lighting truss
We raised the lighting safely out of the way of audience view on eight Columbus-McKinnon chain hoists. Our friends at Hanging Concepts LTD provided rigging services. In addition, Main Stage Productions supplied the competition stages.
All in all, we enjoyed being one of the first providers to provide a flown light package in this venue. We have already marked our calendar for next year’s event.
Originally opened more than a century ago in 1901, Main Street Station remains an iconic and historic landmark in Richmond. The train shed has recently been renovated, and is now one of Richmond’s largest and most popular event venues. Main Street Station is a fantastic venue for large corporate events and meetings. Our crew loves working in this beautiful space. MSS is located right down the street from our Richmond Office!
Richmond Magazine held the 2018 Elbys in the renovated train shed.
The new event space is pretty large, seating nearly 2,000. The old shed roof is easy to rig from, and most types of shows can fit between the glass-encased walls. Since it’s re-opening in 2017, the popular venue hosts political events, weddings, awards shows, charity auctions, corporate meetings & parties and more. Many annual and biannual events, such as the Richmond Wedding Expo, are moving from smaller venues to the new space.
The Lighting & Sound Co. provides production for the Richmond Weddings Fashion show and has since 2015.
Because of it’s convenient location down town, MSS is the perfect venue for corporate events. Main street station is walking distance from many hotels, restaurants, and bars. It’s also a train station, which originally worried us because of the noise. Thankfully, the trains aren’t loud enough to be distracting from any event we’d done so far. For a production company like us, ease of load in is very important. The train shed doesn’t have loading docks, but it does have multiple loading entrances that are easy to access, making it easy to load in alongside other vendors.
Rigging in Main Street Station is made easy by the multiple on-site lifts.