Bethany Church Lights New Campus in New Orleans with Chauvet Professional
United States – Sometimes what is old can become new again. This is the case of the red brick building at 3700 Canal Street in the historic district of Mid-City. Recognized by the New Orleans Historic District Monuments Board, the building had been a church for six decades, until it closed in 2012 following Hurricane Katrina.
Eventually, its owners put the spacious structure up for sale, and in 2019 it was reborn as a place of worship, slated to become the fifth campus of Baton Rouge-based Bethany Church. Led by Pastors Jonathan and Angie Stockstill, Bethany planned to open the new church in 2020 until the COVID pandemic got in the way.
Last August, the building finally began its new church life when it opened its doors to worshipers, after extensive renovations and repairs. Some of the stained glass and wrought iron from the original church were still in place, but the interior has been remodeled to provide a more modern and engaging worship experience. (Bethany uses the term “Experience Time” to identify her service schedule, as in “Experience Time 10am”.)
Key to creating this immersive experience is a collection of new LED lights anchored by eight Rogue R2 Washes, 14 Rogue R1 Washes, nine Rogue R2x Washes, and 15 EPIX Strip Tour lights.
“We purchased the fixtures earlier this year and installed them to have everything ready for our opening on August 15th,” said Brandon Broussard, campus lighting director. “We could never have done it all on time, without our incredible group of volunteers. “
The Bethany team hung the mobile devices on four levels of beams. At the top level, which spans the middle deck, they piloted their Rogue R2 RGBW wash units, relying on the devices’ wide zoom range to change up their look by adjusting areas of coverage. The Rogue R1 Wash units were transported on three rows of beams at increasingly low trims.
This offbeat setup was essential in creating a sense of depth on the relatively narrow church stage. “The biggest challenge in lighting the New Orleans campus is the layout of the room,” Broussard explained. “The room is long and narrow, which means the stage is also narrow, but by using the lighting efficiently, we created that feeling of depth. “
While other Rogue devices add depth to the scene, Rogue R2X units provide key lighting to enhance the viewing experience. The design team positioned five of the units on the front beam for keylighting and four on the top beam with the washes for rear lighting.
To enhance visual appeal and add a contemporary touch to the services, the team positioned the EPIX linear luminaire on the three lower sections of the beam. Using Resolume to create video effects on the stage, Broussard transforms the beam from a utility element to a design element.
“This is a historic building to which we have given a contemporary feel,” said Broussard. “In addition to the limits of the stage, we have eight large bay windows, which let in ambient light. Since the building is part of the Historic District Landmark Commission, we are limited in what we can and cannot do, but we made it work!