Our Latest Rig – From Conception to Completion

Alastair Harris – 03/10/2015

When I was asked to write a blog post on our new lighting rig, I thought “yeah, why not? Easy”. Turns out, not so much. But here goes nothing.

We premiered our new sanctuary lighting rig on Sunday October 18th. This rig was originally planned for July 4th. SUMMIT. When we started planning SUMMIT back in March this rig was one of the original plans. Of the hundreds of ideas we had, this was one of 7 rigs that made it to concept stage.


(I don’t even know why I still have this)

SUMMIT transformed and went through 3 or 4 other rig plans before we finally settled on the cityscape LED, so this plan got put on a shelf. After SUMMIT we put in the 3 screens – which we pinched from Mt Wellington (it’s a great story, ask me about it some time). We knew we wanted the 3 screens, but didn’t really have much more of a plan past that. This plan resurfaced and got improved on, adding in the wings.

©City Impact Church

This plan then went to the creative team, comprised of key creative leaders in the church. They made a few tweaks including making it more symetrical and then signed it off.

Pre-Rig includes stock-taking, maintenance, scheduling, and anything else that is needed before we get the teams out to install. This process can take up to a month. We load spec the rig, assign channels and measure everything. All before a single spanner has been lifted. Then we start the grunt work. About 3 weeks out from the install date we start putting in motor points and disassembling the current rig. These changes are often unnoticeable, but save us many hours during the install week.

Install week starts with a stage strip on the Sunday night. This usually includes all the instruments as well. The old lighting rig is removed and the stage is left empty.


All the motors get moved Monday during the day ready for the rig build that night. When the team arrives we start assembling and hanging truss. The goal for the evening is to get everything hanging and safetey’d. This usually takes 2-6 hours depending on rig and team size.

Tuesday night is cable night. We run all the data and power cables to all the lights and tape it to the truss. This is also when we put in all the correct colour gels. We ‘idiot check’ everything for safety and test everything (ie: Check all the safety chain are attatched, make sure all the cabels are plugged in correctly, etc). This usually requires a larger team than the previous night. We don’t go home until we prove that everything works.


Wednesday everything gets focused (pointed in the right direction). The lighting console is then set up which involves making each button on the consol corrosponed to the correct lights. This usually takes the entire day, leaving Wednesday Night church as the test (but don’t tell anyone).

After the Wednesday night service we fix anything that didn’t work, and do any training that needs to happen before Sunday.

And that is how a new lighting rig appears on Sunday.

©City Impact Church

The End Result

Next time you are in the Sanctuary look up. It’s a different world up there. If you are interested in the lighting ministry team then get in touch.

Some statistics about the current lighting rig:

·       187 Lighting fixtures, including 14 moving lights

·       70m Truss (big metal bars that the lights are attached to)

·       1500m+ Cable (data + power)

·       100+ Hours labour

·       150m+ Tape

– Alastair Harris, Technician at City Impact Church & Lighting Team 2IC

©City Impact Church


Sunday Services

Learn More


Learn More


Learn More

What are you looking for?