Category Archives: Special Events

Competition A/V AV for Robotics VEX

VEX Robotics State Competition

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.

VEX Robotics Competition Fields lit by stage lighting

Robot Competition Fields lit by stage lighting

VEX Robotics

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.

Lighting Equipment

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

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.

 

Main Street Station Event Lighting

Main Street Station Event Lighting, AV

Main Street Station, Richmond, Virginia.

The Lighting & Sound Company can meet all of your Main Street Station Event Lighting and AV needs. 

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!

Main Street Station Event Lighting

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.

 

Richmond Weddings Fashion Show

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 lighting main street station

Rigging in Main Street Station is made easy by the multiple on-site lifts.

 

Wedding custom gobo

Gobos (Monogram Projection) for Weddings and Events

Event lighting doesn’t just have to be a column or circle of light. The skilled designers and technicians at The Lighting & Sound Co can customize the output of some lighting fixtures to project a pattern of light. This element is often referred to as a “gobo,” though it’s also called a template, light pattern, or texture. Gobos can be created from nearly any design, and most flat surfaces are a great place to display a gobo.

Monogram Gobos

Perhaps our most popular gobo service is a custom wedding gobo, often including a monogram. These designs can be chosen from our catalog of custom layouts and fonts, or provided from client artwork. A typical wedding gobo might have the bride and groom’s names in a stylized font, and the wedding date.

Custom Monogram Gobo

Custom Monogram Gobo

Pattern Gobos

A common corporate event service, but also seen at many high-end weddings, is a pattern or design displayed on the walls or ceilings around the venue. The design might be a scenic element, or an abstract projection that creates texture on the wall.

Pattern Gobos projected on the ceiling of a venue

Pattern Gobos projected on the ceiling of The Hotel John Marshall

Logo Gobos

Many events need to display the logo of the event sponsor(s) or the company holding the event. A custom logo gobo makes it easy to project the logo. Most corporate events need a logo flanking the stage, or at the building entrance.

Custom Logo Gobo Projected on Building

Custom Logo Gobo Projected on Building

Aerial Gobos

Most concert lighting will include a haze or other atmospheric effect, which allows the beams of light to show up in the air. We can slot a pattern into the light path, and consequently make fantastic aerial effects possible. Our powerful moving head fixtures have numerous pattern choices that, when combined with prisms and rotation available from the fixture, have the ability to take a show to the next level.

Aerial Gobos in use at a concert

Aerial Gobos in use at a concert

Contact Us Today!

If you would like more information about any of our custom gobo services, feel free to get in touch with us via email at events@lightingandsoundco.com or by phone at (804) 893-5066.

 

Draping for Weddings & Events

Draping for weddings and events is an extremely useful tool to structure and customize your event to exactly the way you want it. Use it to create a unique backdrop for your dessert table or divide a room in half to separate the ceremony and reception. Use it to be a great backdrop for a concert or to make a grand entrance through a doorway. Let The Lighting & Sound Co. come up with a great design for your event.

 

Draping in Motion

At this wedding at the John Marshall Hotel, we used draping to direct the room to the ceremony, then removed it before the reception to open up the room again. Resizing the room and using uplighting helped make the ceremony feel intimate and shifted focus to the bride as she walked through the drape doorway. Finally, after we removed the drape, we redesigned the room for the reception and highlighted the floral centerpieces with pinspots. Because of the easy set up and take down, draping is an effective way to build a temporary, yet elegant barrier in the event space.

Versatility in Draping

 

Independence Golf Club Wedding Drape

Independence Golf Club Wedding Drape

Try combining draping with bistro lighting or uplighting to add a dramatic and unique feeling to your event. Remember that drape can be hung anywhere, so it can look great anywhere. Want to see it on the roof of a tent with string lighting or uplit along the walls? Head over to our gallery to see examples and ideas.

 

Wedding string lighting drape

Drape complimented by a string lighting curtain.

 

A drape & bistro look in a clear tent for a wedding at Tuckahoe Plantation.

Work with the designers at The Lighting & Sound Co. to come up with a special look that fits your event.

 

 

 

Event & Wedding Lighting at the John Marshall Ballrooms

Lighting the John Marshall Ballrooms

The beautiful historic ballrooms at the Hotel John Marshall are a Richmond, Virginia institution. They make for a very lovely venue for wedding ceremonies & receptions, corporate parties, and other special occasions. With two stunning ballrooms, a pre-function lobby space, bridal suites, and a hip-looking lounge, there’s plenty of room to fit most events. The Hotel John Marshall provides plenty of space for any event and the authentic look of the historic building brings a next-level amount of class not found elsewhere in Richmond.

As a selection for a venue, you can’t get much better than the John Marshall. However, as is the case with almost all venues, the ambiance can be improved dramatically simply by adding a few lighting features. Check out the details of the most popular services below.

Uplighting

An especially popular technique to use in this space is uplighting. Using LED lighting, you are able to set the mood using the colors of your choosing. In addition, uplighting has the power to make a large room feel intimate. Beyond that, choosing your uplighting colors can be fun! Try out our powerful Color Picker tool and explore the many different possibilities uplighting can provide.

Custom Gobo

Custom gobos are also relevant in the world of wedding lighting. They are a fantastic way to make your event personalized and memorable. Frequently, a monogram gobo is projected on to the curtain on stage. This location is desirable as the gobo is centered and presented in a way the entire room can see it. Gobos can also be aimed on the dance floor or even in the lobby so guests may see it as they enter.

Pin Spotting

If you are planning on spending a great deal of money on beautiful centerpieces, you don’t want to have them washed out by keeping the work lights on full in the ballroom, and you definitely don’t want them to be overlooked if the lights are a little dimmer. With pin spots, you are able to keep the lights at romantic level while having your magnificent centerpieces pop out of the background and create an eye catching effect. Consequently, pin spotting will allow your guests to admire the centerpieces all night and have them stand out in photos for years to come.

Bistro Lighting

Bistro lighting has the potential to have the biggest “wow” factor. When done correctly (and safely), bistro lighting creates an unparalleled experience. Working with the large ceilings and beautiful chandeliers, bistro lighting hanging from the balconies in the John Marshall produces a very intimate feel. Many popular Pinterest posts also feature bistro lighting.

Draping

The large space provided by the Virginia and Marshall ballrooms can sometimes feel massive. Custom drape features be can added to the space to reduce the expanse or transform the space. Furthermore, drape for weddings are completely customizable and many colors are available. Drape can have bunches and gathers, door arches, complement existing pieces, or create pieces of their own.

You can visit the website for The Historic John Marshall Ballrooms here. See the pictures from this post and many more in our galleries here.

Speaking Lighting

At The Lighting & Sound Co, we have provided event lighting and sound reinforcement for many years. Our start came from the concert and stage production world, which involves plenty of jargon and unique terms. Clients in that world typically have an idea of what their needs are and usually specify (often with a rider) exactly what equipment their production requires.

Weddings and special events, however, bring clients who have a vision but might be unfamiliar with the terms that describe what they want to see and hear.  It’s our job to explain the services we can provide that will accentuate and exemplify a vision that is given to us. We “speak lighting” and translate for our clients.

From Vision to Reality

Our design and sales team consults with clients every day who tell us where they are having an event, how many people are attending, and might share a picture that they saw and would like to replicate. We take this information and translate it into a complete event design, making it easy for our clients to have a perfect event. If the venue is a spot we haven’t worked at,  we’ll do a site survey to get measurements of a space, evaluate the feasibility of different lighting products, plan electrical usage and loading access, and find any limitations of the event site. Many times it is useful to meet the client on site to demo some lighting products or get a feel for what colors will look good in an event space. Of course, we also provide our clients with a virtual color picker, to choose colors in advance of an event.

There are thousands of different styles of lighting fixtures and ways to add light or leave an area dark, as may be required. We might “wash” a wall or ceiling with a single color, or, accent just the columns of a room with sleek, narrow uplighting. We can shoot a client’s logo as a”gobo” on a wall of drape or put narrow spots on the centerpieces of tables. If a large projector screen is needed right on the edge of a seating area, we’ll be sure to use a rear-projection screen so the image isn’t blocked by people walking in front of it.

Once we have an idea of a client’s vision, and have taken a look at the venue, we’ll offer lighting, sound, AV, and decor options that align with the theme of the event, look sleek and classy without having unsightly components, and, most importantly, provide for a safe event. A portfolio of lighting options is available to examine a selection of choices. The client selects the style they prefer and we set it up at the event. In the background, our technical teams are taking the equipment specified by the sales team and determining the safest and most efficient way to set it up. Very occasionally we’ll find that we need to add a component to safely do a job or provide the best experience for the client. If we lose money doing the job right but the client is happy, we are also happy.

How can we make your event perfect?

We specialize in delivering perfection, even with difficult or unusual requests. If you were told that a certain service couldn’t be done, give us a call. We imagine new ways to provide solutions that used to require significant expense or unsafe methods. Clients and venues often say to us, “Nobody ever did that here before!”

It pays to know people. If there’s a task we can’t handle, chances are we know someone who can. Our network of event partners spans numerous industries, hundreds of people, and multiple states.

Let us handle the complex or technical aspects of your event, so you can concentrate on other details. Tell us what you want to happen, and we’ll transform your vision into reality. Our promise is “Event Perfection” and we won’t stop until we achieve it.

Bistro Lighting

Bistro Lighting Styles for Weddings, Corporate Events & More

Bistro lighting is one of the most popular wedding lighting options, and The Lighting & Sound Co provides every style of bistro lighting you may need!

Also known as string lighting, festoon lighting, or cafe lighting, what we refer to as bistro lighting, is an individual strand with bare lightbulbs dangling down at even intervals.  Bistro lights provide a classic, timeless look with a warm glow. The lights are often hung over a reception area, but can also go over a dance floor, patio, or entrance area. Typically, our technicians will install multiple strings of bistro at an event site, arranged in a particular pattern.

One of the best features of bistro lighting is that it can be used nearly anywhere. We commonly install bistro light strings in tents, but have hung them in barns, over open fields and courtyards, in hotel ballrooms, on top of swimming pools, and around food courts and skating rinks. It also neatly complements other types of lighting including uplighting and chandeliers.

Styles of Bistro Lighting

Following are several styles of  lighting installations. This is by no means an exhaustive list but includes our most commonly-provided services:

Tracing Bistro

Typically installed in a frame tent or other space with exposed rafters, this style follows the roof supports. This style uses simple bistro which, while not as bright as classic bistro, offers a great look when used for tracing, and is great for shorter tents.

 

Tracing bistro wedding Lighting

Tracing bistro lighting on a tent for a wedding at Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens.

Fanning (or festooning) Bistro

Often used outside, all of the strands of lights fan out from one point, on a building or other support structure.

Festooning bistro lights wedding

Festooning Bistro Lighting for an Event at Tredegar Ironworks in Richmond, VA.

Traditional (or Zig-zag) Bistro

Our most common service which provides a classic glow in any space, be it a ballroom, tent, or open field. If there is no place to hang the bistro from, we will bring appropriate support structures that don’t distract from your event.

Gathered Bistro

Commonly used to gather all the strands together over a key spot like a dance floor.

Gathered bistro cafe lights outdoor

Gatherered Bistro Lighting for an outdoor event. 

Parallel Bistro

Effective where there are balconies, buildings, or roof structures that create a long rectangular area.

Bistro lighting paper lanterns dance floor

Parallel bistro lighting with paper lanterns over a dance floor. 

Crossing Bistro

An excellent style for tents, because some tents are shorter than others. A stylish way of hanging bistro lighting, great for frame tents and long but thin indoor or outdoor areas.

Crossing bistro lights chandeliers

Crossing Bistro Lighting with chandeliers at a networking event for Richmond Weddings.

 

Bistro Arch

Also good for shorter tents, but works in any tent; bistro strings follow the angles of the roof to leave plenty of headroom for guest.

 

Bistro event lighting

Bistro Arch inside a tent for an event at Tredegar Ironworks.

 

 

Confetti Cannons Now Available For Your Event!

If your event needs to go off with a bang, we’ve got you covered (literally!) with our new Confetti Cannons! Streamers or confetti can be blasted from these compressed air cannons. Whether you need a concert confetti effect or bridal confetti for a wedding, we’ll ensure each money shot is right on target. The double-barrel Big Shots Cannon by Artistry In Motion is used at New Years events, Las Vegas nightclubs, and marathons across the country, and we are the first in the Richmond area to own this top-of-the-line confetti cannon.

Here are a couple clips of two cannons in use at a time:

View post on imgur.com

We recommend streamers for the farthest distance shot or confetti for covering a smaller area such as a dance floor. If the ceiling is low, positioning the confetti cannons as high as possible will give the best hangtime.

Having a confetti effect for your event, combined with lighting and sound support is sure to provide maximum audience enjoyment and excellent pictures.

Selected Applications:

Club Effect,Wedding Sendoff, Concert Special Effect, Film and Video Production, Theatrical Shows, Sporting Events, New Year’s Eve Celebration

Tech Specs:

Model
Big Shots Cannon
Weight
50 Lbs.
Size
8” L X 16 ” W X 24” H
Lighting Board Connectivity
Yes
Cannon Barrel Size
2-inch Diameter
Actuation
Remote
Flame Resistant Yes
Attendant Required
No
Duration of Effect
Single Shot
Confetti Height
40-50 Feet
Streamer Height
65-80 Feet
Effects
Single Shot- Multiple Looks
Truss Mountable
Yes

Under Armor Brothers In Arms Classic

The Lighting & Sound Co headed out to the Hampton Roads area to set up some TV lighting for the Under Armor Brothers In Arms Classic football game between two top-tier football teams. Bleacher Report was televising the game live via webcast between no. 2 in the country IMG Academy of Sarasota, Florida and Bishop Sullivan Catholic High School of Virginia Beach. Both schools are high school football powerhouses; the IMG Ascenders have 30 players committed to college teams while the Bishop Sullivan Crusaders have 7 commits.

 

Under armor football tunnel bleacher report

Gear for the tunnel unloaded and ready to be set up.

Working at the Virginia Beach Sportsplex, we provided a truss goalpost structure with an extensive moving head and LED strip lighting package so that the teams would have a tunnel-like archway filled with smoke and haze effects as well as effect lighting to run out of onto the field at the start of the game. Numerous TV cameras captured captured the entire scene, as local news stations and Bleacher Report’s photojournalists filmed from all angles.

Completed structure stood in the corner of the field for both teams to run through as they entered the field

Completed truss structure stood in the corner for both teams to run through as they entered the field

Lighting effects consisted of moving head beam units (Elation Beam 5R), moving head wash units (Chauvet Rogue R2 Wash), and LED striplights (Elation ELED QA Strip). Our lighting designer operated the rig live as the run out occurred for maximum visual effect and excellent looks for TV viewers. The colors were coordinated to match with the team uniform color.

Meanwhile, a powerful QSC KW153 active loudspeaker played upbeat music to pump up the players as they ran out through the tunnel.

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The necessary electrical power for all of this professional stage lighting was not available nearby where it would be needed on the football field. Fortunately, our friends at Temp-Power had just the right size of quiet-run portable generators to provide the needed electricity while being quiet enough to not interrupt the event.

Gear List:

  • 8x Elation Lighting Platinum Beam 5R
  • 8x Elation Lighting ELED QA Strip
  • 8x Chauvet Rogue R2 Wash
  • 2x Martin JEM ZR44 High Mass Fog Machine
  • Martin M-PC lighting console with M-Touch control surface
  • 8x Applied Electronics 12″ x 12″x 10′ HD Box Truss
  • 4x Applied Electronics 12″ x 12″ 5-way corner block
  • 4x Applied Electronics Truss Baseplate
  • 2x Applied Electronics Truss Grapple
  • QSC KW153 3-way Active Speaker
  • 6x Yellow Jacket Cable Ramp
  • 2x Honda EU6500IS 6.5kw Quiet-Run Inverter Generator

 

 

UNLV Presidential Debates TV Lighting Politics

The Third Presidential Debate

The final debate of the 2016 United States presidential election debates sent the team at The Lighting & Sound Co to Las Vegas, Nevada, to set up stage lighting for TV interviews. The final presidential debate took place at the University of Nevada Las Vegas’s Thomas and Mack Center.  This arena holds nearly 17,000 people, and we saw close to that many lighting technicians, stagehands, and riggers working on setup for the debate in the days beforehand.

Detroit Sunrise

Sunrise from ~30,000 feet

Lighting the interview stage went very similar to the TV stage lighting we did for the Vice Presidential Debates in Farmville, VA. However, we needed to source as much of the equipment as possible locally in Las Vegas rather than shipping it from our home base in Richmond, VA.  Our friends at 4Wall Entertainment Lighting were great at helping us with this. Still, the Kino Flo Celeb TV stage lights required were unavailable in Las Vegas, so some came from 4Wall’s Los Angeles office, where they have plenty of film lighting gear, while we did send a pallet of equipment and stage lighting from Richmond VA as well.

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Again we used Kino Flo Celeb 400Q film lighting fixtures for key lighting, with ETC Source Four Lekos as fill lighting. Control was the Martin Professional Maxxyz software running on M-PC with M-Touch for physical control