Audio Visual Setup for a Great Show

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My goal is to make sure you have an event that your guests will talk about for months or maybe years to come. Below are some guidelines and requirements. Having the right setup makes a huge difference in the way the audience enjoys the show.  Any setup happens at your convenience, whatever works for the event. Everything is pretty flexible; if you have any questions, give me a call.

Audio Visual and Room Set-up

Lighting: General stage wash. Everything happens center stage. If the program takes place in a banquet room, general lighting will be fine.  Call for details or questions.

Sound: Depending on the size of your group, a sound system may be required. You can provide this, or depending on travel arrangements, I can provide a small sound system with wireless mic. Your group can use it for announcements or awards before the performance to keep it easy for you. Please call for details.

Electrical: Two (2) electrical outlets near the performance space and out of the traffic pattern will be required.

Stage: For audiences over 75 people, a raised platform of at least 8’ x 12’ in size with stairs for audience access will make it easier for everyone to see (prefer 12’ x 16’).  Place the front row within 5’ of the stage. If you have a large group and you are doing a theater set up, make sure to have a center aisle. If other speakers are using a podium or lectern, please place it off to one side so that there is room to walk in front of it.

Performance Area Positioning. If the room is rectangular, position the “stage” in the middle of the long side of the rectangle (the 50-yard line). In that position, as opposed to one end of the room, almost all of the tables in the room are much closer to the stage.

Recommended room setup
30 to 45 minutes is required for set up and sound check. It can be done in a shorter time if needed; please call with questions.


SHOW TIME: After dessert has been served and all service has concluded. Service staff can easily block the view of the program and make it difficult for your audience members to enjoy the opening moments.

The Audience Should Be Seated. People standing, talking, or drinking can quickly change a captive environment into a struggle for the performer to try and hold their attention. There are ways to overcome these problems, but a normal interactive act may not survive the disruptions. An alternative approach to entertainment may be required, such as strolling magic.

Close the Bar During the Show. (If possible) If people get up during the program to get a drink, it sends a psychological message to everyone in the room that they are no longer interested in the show.

Avoid Obstructions to Viewing the Program. Columns, walls, large table decorations, or a large buffet table between the audience and the stage block the view of the program. If they can’t see, they will talk and be unable to enjoy the program.

Avoid a Dance Floor.
Occasionally, a dance floor will be placed in front of the stage, creating a divided room with half the audience on the left side of the room, no one in front of the stage, and half of the audience on the right side of the room. The entertainer is forced to place his back to half of the audience at all times. When the performer addresses the one side of the room, the other side of the room is no longer able to see or be involved in the program. Audience interest is difficult to maintain. A small dance floor that does not divide the room into two separate halves can work, but special care must be taken to position the audience as close to the stage as possible. There must be an audience in front of the stage.

Recommended Layouts
The first 3 layouts will make for a great show. All of the tables are in front of the performance area, and the entrances are at the back of the room, so guests don’t have to walk in front of the stage if they arrive late or have to go to the restroom. The round tables work great for banquets, awards dinners, and galas. The rectangle tables are great for seminars and meetings.

Steve Barcellona Corporate event set up 1Steve Barcellona Corporate event set up 2Steve Barcellona Corporate event set up 3

The following layouts make the performance difficult.  If the stage is surrounded, some tables can’t see the show and lose interest. They will eventually start to talk, ruining the show for everyone. If there is a dance floor between the audience and the performance area, it will act like a barrier, and the audience will feel like they don’t need to participate. You might as well fill it with alligators!  Also, the entrances are by the stage.
Steve Barcellona Corporate event set up 5

Steve Barcellona Corporate event set up 4

Other room set ups are possible please call for details