It's been a busy few months for us here at Outdoor Stages. With many stage hire bookings temporarily put on pause, we're now back at it gearing up for what is set to be the busiest year on record. Despite the issues caused by COVID-19, we're not an outdoor staging company that likes to sit still.
Rather than feeling sorry for ourselves, we've been looking at how the situation may dictate that we need to stock a broader range of stages to better meet the needs of event organisers who've decided to take their concepts from the indoors to the outdoors.
Through the market research we've undertaken, it became clear that offering bandstand stage hire would be a good idea. So we wasted no time in acquiring the right additional equipment to start offering it as a service.
But in case you're wondering why you might want to hire a bandstand stage as opposed to a conventional festival stage, then it's worth us spending a little time running over the main differences.
Bandstand Stage Hire Vs Festival Stage Hire
When discussing the differences between bandstand hire and more traditional festival stage hire, the best place to start is perhaps with the shape. As opposed to a quadrilateral square or 'box'-style footprint, bandstand stages are usually octagonal or circular in terms of their overall geometry.
Rather than having the viewing experience focused on the front of the stage by having stage drapes on three sides, a bandstand stage has no sides, offering a complete 360-degree viewing experience. Bandstand stages are then covered by a roof supported by a truss system with six to eight poles (more for larger bandstands) bearing the weight.
A bandstand stage is usually elevated, but it may only be a few feet off the ground, compared to the metre-plus of some of the larger festival stages. However, apart from those key differences (principally the open-sidedness and different shape) bandstands are very similar to traditional stages, and can be erected using a lot of the same equipment.
But you might be wondering why choose bandstand stage hire, over a traditional stage?
Which Events Are Suitable for Bandstand Stage Hire?
The significant advantage a bandstand stage has over more traditional counterparts is their increased flexibility. While an outdoor event with a festival stage in the middle of the venue wouldn't work, bandstands are just as at home placed in the middle of a location as they being a focal point in one corner since they offer uninterrupted viewing.
Given that this is the case; bandstands offer an excellent alternative for events that depend on more intimate viewing experience. For example, with theatres closed nationwide, a bandstand stage could provide a perfect outdoor option for a stage production with the roof providing the necessary protection from any wind and rain.
Similarly, with concert halls also closed, there's never been a better time for an outdoor performance of brass bands, orchestras, and other types of musical ensembles. After all, these are the types of groups that bandstands were created for. Their large diameter helps to accommodate plenty of performers on stage at any one time.
But the use for a bandstand stage goes far beyond musical or theatrical performances. Other performers who traditionally make their appearances indoors, may want to use a bandstand to take their act outside with ample protection from the weather. Comedians, performance magicians, poets, dancers, whomever the act may be, the intimacy of a bandstand stage performance can bring performers much closer with their fans and vice versa.
Bandstand Stage Hire Considerations
If you've been convinced by us to hire a bandstand stage (we don't blame you, we're very convincing!) as the perfect outdoor solution to your event, you'll need to take into account several factors before we're able to arrive on-site and construct it.
First of all, you need to think about the stage in relation to your venue. You've got more options when it comes to the positioning of the stage since, as mentioned, bandstand stages are well-suited to being right in the centre of a venue, providing a much wider viewing angle for audiences.
Next, think about the surface proposed for the site of your bandstand. We can easily handle grass or hard surfaces such as concrete, but they do require different load calculations and methods for securing the stage. For grass surfaces, you'll need to get hold of a local authority "Ground Site Services Survey" to ensure that our team aren't going to accidentally drill through any existing pipework beneath the surface.
You've also got to factor in the requirements of the performers. If you're hosting a classical orchestra, then obviously they are going to require a stage with a larger surface area than a local rock band, for example. By contrast, if it's an outdoor Shakespeare play you're thinking about hosting on a bandstand stage, then you may need the use of stage drapes to hide crucial props and provide a space for costume changes in between scenes.
Lastly, you've obviously got to think about the size and scale of your event in order to determine the appropriate size for your stage. For a bandstand, this process will be slightly different from a typical stage size choice. Usually, the number of event attendees would have the most significant influence on the stage size. But when it comes to hiring a bandstand stage, the needs of your performers may have just as much sway as your audience size.
Hire Premium Lighting and Sound Equipment with Your Bandstand Stage
Of course, regardless of your choice of stage, you also need to think about the associated audio visual (AV) equipment that is going to make your bandstand stage hire a success. From stage lighting, to audio equipment that projects crisp sound to your audience, here at Outdoor Stages, we can supply everything you could possibly require offering a complete turn-key solution for your bandstand-based event.
We've reinvested continuously to build an unrivalled stock of associated production equipment, meaning that, unlike some providers, we can provide the complete event production package without having to rely on 'subbing' anything in.
No matter the size or scale of your event, we can provide what you are looking for in terms of PA systems, mixing desks, amplifiers, stage monitors, LED lighting fixtures, backstage areas, viewing platforms, truss structures, special effects, and LED screens to name but a small selection of our sound and lighting equipment capabilities.
Referencing sound and lighting specifically we have over 70 moving head DMX fixtures, LED pixel bar systems, stage blinders, PAR cans, lasers, smoke machines, and the list goes on and on! Our roster of sound equipment is no less impressive. We only stock recognised industry-leading audio equipment brands such as d&b audiotechnik and Shure, to name just a few. PA speakers, amplifiers, stage monitors, outdoor LED video wall screens, mixing desks, and line arrays; you name it, we've got it in our warehouse ready and waiting to go!
As if that wasn't enough, we've also been blessed with some of the best sound engineers and lighting technicians in the business. Need someone to mix the live band you've booked? No problem! Need a complete event production support package, including a choreographed light shows? Yep, we can do that too!
Given recent events, you could also use a bandstand stage to house an outdoor cinema with one of our giant LED screens available for hire. You could either hire one for placement within the structure to create an intimate viewing experience. Or why not affix several smaller screens to the outside of the stage for a full 360-degree performance?
When Can You Hire a Bandstand Stage?
The short answer is now! We have invested in a range of solutions that are currently in stock and ready to be sent out with our trusted stage crews for your event. Perhaps the more pertinent question is when you should book in your bandstand stage hire? As in, how far in advance should you make the call?
Well, it may come as no surprise that the earlier, the better when it comes to booking in any type of stage hire with us. As you probably don't need to be reminded, there are outdoor events taking place throughout the calendar year, but by the time summer rolls around, there's very little slack in the schedule!
While bandstands may not be quite as expansive as some of our bigger festival stages, we still prefer our Outdoor Stages clients to at least reserve the stage and any sound, lighting, and special effects extras they'd like at least three months in advance. In an ideal world, we'd have even longer than that given how intricate balancing a summer festival season can be!
Of course, that's not set in stone, and we can fulfil stage orders at much shorter notice. We're very much aware that COVID-19 restrictions can change at the drop of a hat, and we've already supplied stage hire to companies who've had to respond quickly to the virus. But it's always a good idea to get in touch with us as soon as you know you might require a bandstand stage at your event.
Why Should You Choose Outdoor Stages for Your Bandstand Stage Hire?
There's no question about it; bandstands have that certain je ne sais quoi about them. They are a throwback to a bygone era in many ways. Still, they also offer a great deal of flexibility, which is an attractive quality in an outdoor events industry that is increasingly fluid.
With a panoramic viewing experience, they give a chance for social-distanced audiences to get a better view without being so far away, and they provide an intimate outdoor experience for performers prevented from gaining access to their traditional indoor stages. Here at Outdoor Stages, we've been quick to recognise their potential within the new context in which we find ourselves in.
Concerning why you should choose us for bandstand stage hire, we feel that we provide some of the best, if not THE best all-inclusive stage hire packages across London, Surrey, Hampshire, and the rest of England for that matter. We've taken a fresh approach to the stage hire industry by combining all required aspects of live performance and bundling together as part of all-in-one stage hire packages.
When you also add in our highly-skilled and experienced crews and technicians who love what they do, you'll receive an all-in-one event production package capable of amazing up to 10,000 fans! We're also on hand to help you through every step of the process should you need our consultation. We can assess venues, make recommendations, and provide bespoke quotes that match the specific challenges of either your site or the nature of the event in question.
So if you're putting together an event in the Spring or Summer of 2021, and you feel that a bandstand stage fits the bill, don't hesitate to get in contact with a member of the Outdoor Stages team to arrange an initial consultation.