Set The Stage: 7 of our favorite Stage Design Ideas
It's the center of your event, the focus of your production design - your stage. It must be remarkable, grand, and original. And yet, it cannot be so overwhelming that it detracts from whomever or whatever it is that will be presented there. There is so much to consider: size, scale, lighting, colors, design, set-up - finding that visual balance is essential.
We've gathered some of our favorite stage design ideas to inspire your next event. We hope you like them as much as we do.
Use your company brand or theme to guide your color choices. Keep it simple--restrict yourself to two or three colors, tops. Think about the mood you are trying to convey. Note above, the stage in blue gives a feeling of glacial, icy cold and the stage to the right, though it incorporates some aqua blue, feels bright and warm. Whether you go with a monochromatic palette, contrast, or complimentary hues, having color as the focus of your stage, is an easy way to create a set that really pops.
There are so many stunning ways to use light at your event (we've even detailed some of our favorite ways in another blog entry right HERE) but making light the focus of your stage design is a beautiful way to provide illumination and stunning design elements. Essentially, when you use light as your stage design focus, you solve two problems at once. 3-D stage lighting is particularly cool and recent innovations in LED technology give installations more control for color, brightness and movement effects.
Fabric is almost infinitely malleable and can be used in many inventive ways. You're probably familiar with fabric swags and various types of curtains, but in recent years fabrics have begun to be used in new and unique ways. Pictured above is a sculptural fabric installation at the MTV awards in 2009. White fabric absorbed changing colors from lighting gels and so the stage was infinitely changeable but with a striking, funky shape that gave the stage a feeling of musical movement.
Many types of stage design use projections to create image backdrops on curtains, flat panels, or other stage backgrounds. Especially with such a proliferation now of digital technology, the possibilities are truly limitless for creating textured or dynamic stage elements. It's possible, too, to create some visual curiosity for your audience by engineering unique stage designs like this one pictured above made for an electronica band called Flying Lotus. Using rear and front projection, the stage design here was based on a tesseract (a four-dimensional analog of a cube shape) and the structure was lined with LED tubes along a steel structure with panels to absorb the projections designed for almost-infinite geometric variations mixed with dynamic light imagery.
Cardboard boxes, chicken wire, rolled paper, paper and styrofoam cups, coffee filters, wood shingles, pvc pipes, blocking tape--we've seen amazing examples of all of these seemingly ordinary yet unique materials put to use in stage design. As pictured above, different sizes of styrofoam cups, when lit from different directions, create a textural backdrop of varying light and shadow. Especially when your budget is a concern, thinking outside of the norm for your set design can be a way to save money and create something unexpected.
Sometimes the center stage is the entrance, the exterior or the stage itself. Living elements, like this living building, show off the "green" focus of this Dior event. Plants, trees, and flowers give a lush, sculptural, and unique flair. In the interior of your event, carry the garden or forest details throughout your production and stage design.
Mirrors are one of the most dynamic stage design components out there. Depending on their size, shape and angle, mirrors give a kaleidoscopic effect to set and stage design. Light and color are reflected and the mirrors create moving images of the performers and the audience. If mirrors are prohibitive for any reason, consider mimicking the effect with sheet metal or foils.
ALL OF THIS IS POSSIBLE, AND MORE. RECYCLED PALLETS, FOAM, NEON, SCULPTURES, GIANT BOOKS, A WATERFALL OF YARN--YOU NAME IT--WHATEVER IT IS THAT YOU CAN IMAGINE WE CAN HELP YOU DO IT.