Crossroads Church, Corona, California

Crossroads Church, Corona, California

November 03, 2005

In the spring of 2005, Crossroads Church in Corona, California celebrated the opening of a state-of-the-art, 3200 seat auditorium. Dubbed Stage1, the auditorium is the largest entertainment venue in Corona and provides top-notch, family entertainment for the community. Internationally recognized artists like Amy Grant, SheDaisy, Olivia Newton John and Lonestar have already played there.

The nearly 60,000 square foot, $14 million venue houses the latest in audio and lighting systems, including a full Martin MAC rig controlled by a Maxxyz lighting console, as well digital media effects from Martin’s Maxedia Digital Media Composer. In addition there are top quality touring conveniences, a full loading dock, warehouse space and more.

Crossroads is a house of worship however and the venue doubles as a church with three services on Sundays. “Stage1 is the personality of the building when outside events come in,” Rob Smoot, Director of Technology at Crossroads, comments. “One of our goals is to get people on campus so Stage1 is one of the facets that we use to bring people on campus by bringing in outside concerts, not just Christian but anything. Back in the planning stages they realized that the space had more purpose than just a church, which really would only use it a couple of days a week. We made a couple tweaks to the room to make it more user friendly for outside events and consequently made a lot of decisions as far as the lighting system.”

That system includes an array of Martin automated fixtures - MAC 2000 Performance, MAC 550 profile spots, MAC 250 Entours, and MiniMACs all controlled by the Maxxyz console. Adding to the visual environment is Martin’s Maxedia media server for a host of digital effects. Conventional lighting includes ETC PARs and Lekos, and 144 2.4K Sensor dimmers. Entertainment Lighting Services (ELS) was the lighting supplier for the main project with local company GST Systems also involved.

“Crossroads hosts speaking events, corporate shows, concerts and more,” Rob, who has a background in corporate production and broadcasting, explains. “With multi-use in mind, that’s why we went with that type of stage, the layout, the atriums, catwalk, etc. Then we thought, what’s going to be the most rider friendly, most tour friendly, most industry standard, most suitable for those events, and then we decided to go with automated lighting and Martin.”

The Martin gear is spread throughout the space - on truss, a large catwalk over the seating area, and on the stage floor. The catwalk spans the room and has two branches, one over the front of the stage and one further back, all with circuitry. Six MAC 2000 Performance are located at front of house for front lighting, with MAC 2000 Performance and MAC 550s (6 of each) positioned on the catwalk over the stage for lighting the band members and effects out into the house. There are also MAC 550s on a midstage truss and ten MAC 250 Entours on the floor of the stage.

LD Scott Anderson
The main lighting designer at Crossroads is Scott Anderson. “We wanted easy maintenance, easy changeover ability,” he stated about the lighting system. “We have the lights to add to what is happening in the church, but also have the capability to host big events or do a big production. We do have concerts but because it is a church we don’t get crazy. Instead we set a mood for what is happening. Once in a while we’ll do a special where we’ll get a more concert feel but more often we set a mood with more static looks rather than a lot of movement.”

Scott often incorporates the MAC 550 and MAC 2000 Performance animation wheels when lighting bands as well as at Sunday services. “They’re beautiful. I love it. One of the stock gobos in the 2Ks, a break up pattern of lines, I use with the prism with the animation wheel behind it for a great rain look. It’s nice to use a couple of effects at one time. We had Delirious come through and their LD used the animation wheel moving over the band which was really nice. Lighting them with the whole stage moving all at once, it really plays with your eyes.

“On Sundays, while the pastor is speaking, instead of leaving the 550s on the midstage truss dead, I point them backwards onto the back wall and have a gobo set, slide it out of focus for a break up on the wall, and put the animation wheel underneath, moving very slowly. There’s movement but not enough to distract from what is happening while the pastor’s speaking. I could use a Leko but the animation wheel adds life to the look. Once in a while we’ll do a big song that fits into the message of what the pastor is speaking about with lighting and video.”

All Martin gear is “full board” on Sundays, including the Maxedia which is used for on screen visuals. “We’re really gearing up on Maxedia,” Scott says. “For us it’s killer – it’s really the next step. We use Maxedia as our visual background. Some of the visual is pre-decided, some of it’s on the fly. We’ve bought stock footage over the years and are dropping it into Maxedia as fast as we can. We’re also creating 3D digital which we can drop in and manipulate. Now we’re starting to drop videos in as well. We use it as our visual mainstay on a lot of songs onto three big screens, a 14 x 28 ft main screen and two side screens, one each side of the stage.”

The Martin lighting is all controlled via a Martin Maxxyz console. “I was sold on Maxxyz the day I saw it,” Scott states. “I had seen the others and Maxxyz made the most sense for our purpose. With everything in the room being Martin we have a step up on the ability to interface and make things work to a higher potential than someone who walks in with another board. Lots of LDs who come through have seen the board and show an interest.

The Maxxyz universes have been placed remotely by using the Martin Ether2DMX, which Martin Control Products Specialist, Matthias Hinrichs, encouraged them to do. “We use the Martin Ether2DMX as a way to branch our system out. The Ether2DMX saves cabling and it’s the better way to do it.” The Maxxyz is located at FOH with ether up to the catwalk. In the catwalk are two Martin Ether2DMX boxes so that each leg of the catwalk has a universe.

Additional Martin lighting includes six MiniMACs in the London Institute room, a type of high tech classroom. The MiniMACs provide architectural lighting in a classroom setting and are occasionally used in the main room for ground effects, drum lights, etc.

“The system has been operational for eight months and has been rock solid,” Scott concludes. “Bands that have come in have used the lights and have had zero problems. We have some gear here that tours don’t even have. I feel really fortunate.”

Martin Equipment:
12 x MAC 550
12 x MAC 2000 Performance
12 x MAC 250 Entour
6 x MiniMAC
1 x Maxedia
1 x Maxxyz
2 x Ether2DMX