Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Church Stage Design Made Easy

Being a church that does both blended and modern worship, our stage needs to have two very distinct looks and feels every Sunday.  The problem is that we don't have a theatrical type stage which allows us to move items on and off to the wings or behind a drop.  I had some ideas, but I wasn't sure how they would work or if they were even possible.  My idea was to have a series of panels about 12 feet off the back wall of the stage that would create dead space for us to store stage pieces such as risers and chairs out of site for our modern service but make them easily accesible for our blended service which utilized full choir and orchestra.

I needed a program that would allow me to create a 3D stage designs that I could visualize the ideas I had in my head.  So I started doing some searching on the web.  Sure enough!  I found a free 3D software by Google called SKETCHUP.  This program is amazing!  It offers video tutorials online that make it easy to learn.  I was able to create the sketch below within about three hours after downloading the program.

In addition to the drawing function, there are also downloadable images such as drum sets, pianos, etc.   It's not complete, but as you can see, it creates a very nice 3D model that is completely rotatable in all directions.

We made some modifications during the actual building, but here is a picture of the final product.

I can't wait to start using it with lighting design as well.

The ability to help my pastor visualize my ideas is invaluable.  I had discussed my ideas with him before, but when he finally saw it, he immediately got excited and gave me the "go ahead" to make it happen.

Let me know if this is helpful to you or what program you use for stage design at your church.


  1. Fabulous use of technology Cliff! You are doing an amazing job taking the worship services to the next level (or maybe a few levels at a time).

  2. Thanks, Jeff! I really appreciate the encouragement. It means a lot. Love that you're a part of the team and look forward to getting to know you better.

  3. Beautiful design...love it! Can you tell me what the measurements are?

    1. Hi Letitia! Thanks! Our stage measures approximately 48' across and 35' deep.

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