BATON ROUGE, LA – At the start of the COVID-19 lockdown, Bethany Church published three “Quarantine Goals” on its Facebook page. Like the three large white crosses that tower over its spacious grounds, the church’s rock-solid statement left no doubt about its conviction or commitment. It read simply: “CALM DOWN, GET A WORD, STAND FIRM”
The same reassuring tone characterizes the four virtual services Bethany is livestreaming every week. This is reflected in the visuals created for those online services, which are supported by a diverse range of lighting designs, from those featuring variety of colors and movements, to more subtle versions that rely on unique side and back angles. CHAUVET Professional Rogue fixtures in the church’s rig are used to convey this range of powerful looks.
In a time of lockdowns, the church is taking a more basic approach to visuals. This is even reflected in the camera angles used in the livestream. Not shying away from revealing empty spaces in the large church, and with minimal scenic elements, the videos convey a pure, straightforward image. Their overriding message is clear: a church is not a building, but a place within the hearts and souls of its community.
At one recent Sunday service, the comforting glow created by the 10
Rogue R2X Wash and 10 Rogue R2X VW fixtures in the livestream rig engenders this feeling. The R2X Wash units were positioned on mid-stage truss and used to create backlight that fills the space behind the band in the absence of scenic elements.
“The high output and wide zoom range of the R2X Wash help us create some unique backlighting looks,” said Ryan Rider Central Lighting Director at Bethany. “They add depth to the stage and we can also use them for the occasional eye candy effect.”
Rider discussed how the livestreams are enhanced by the rig’s Rogue R2X VW fixtures, which are called upon to light the scrim above the band and to provide a soft key light. “When this campus was built, we elected to go with the R2X VW instead of standard ellipsoidals, because of their versatility,” he said. “For the same price, we not only get a key light, but also a moving wash with a ton of punch. The CRI is excellent. The R2X VW is proving that in these livestreams.
Also being proven during this period is the resiliency of Bethany Church and the cohesiveness of its team members. “I like the saying ‘it takes a village,’” said Rider. “Our Experience Director Dustin West, Camera Director Taylor Coleman, Lead Audio Engineer Brian Edwards and the whole team come together to support the message of Pastor Jonathan. It is like a family here.”
Like all families, the Bethany Church team and the community they serve are standing strong against the storm.