The Church Balcony and the FOH Engineer

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6 comments on this post.
  1. Josh Fisher:

    I completely agree with your post! Our church built the sound booth up in a separate room. It’s extremely hard to mix for the audience being up there and even more difficult to communicate with the worship team. We are actually in the process of moving the mixer downstairs. Can’t wait!

  2. Carl Redding:

    Hey Jason, thanks for the post. I love reading your perspective on this, especially with your experience in running sound in different venues! I agree with you on all of the points. It’s extremely difficult though with the current buildings that we have to use! I couldn’t even imagine the work involved in moving our audio/video control booth down to the floor. Our sanctuary was designed to have it where it is and it would be a nightmare to try and convince anyone in the church (unless they are a skilled sound tech) otherwise. That’s just where you are supposed to mix from! It can be brutal when you have to weed through the preconceived ideas of church people, board members and other staff members! You have great points but that fight I think I will leave for another day… it’s very functional where it is at and as long as that facility is opened, it will probably remain there! Thanks for posting that though it really makes me think about it!!

  3. jasoncastellente:

    Pastor Carl,

    First, thank you for reading my blog… I really appreciate you taking the time to check it out.
    I’ve always had alot of respect for you, your opinions and enjoyed talking to you. Preconceptions and tradition are difficult to break. I just really wanted to put forward a solid argument and opinion. Of course you always need to take into account the leadership that God has instituted above you as a sound tech. If the church leaders decide to put the production booth in a position that is less then ideal, I believe that God will bless that mix position 🙂 It may be difficult but you must then do your best to make it functional. If that’s the way your auditorium is designed, sometimes you will just have to live with it and make it work. I do understand and respect that.
    My intention was to put forth a solid point of view that was understandable to the average person rather then one that is filled with tech jargon. Communicating clearly is at least half of the battle!!

  4. Anthony Stowell:

    We all know Jesus mixed FOH from the balcony, in a room, with a window that didn’t open 😉

    But seriously, you make great points in the article for putting the production booth on the floor or at least the audio side of things. My favorite part is when you said in your comment about trusting the leadership that God has put in place. It may be hard to mix and they may not let you move to the main floor but other solutions are available such as a console that can be adjusted remotely. It may not be ideal BUT at least your ears are in the same space as the rest of the audience. Thanks Jason for giving us information to help better inform our leadership so they can continue to lead us well.

  5. jasoncastellente:


    Thanks so much for your comment. Always good to hear what people think after they read my posts and thoughts. I really appreciate your thoughts!

    My posts (including this one) usually stem out of real life things that I struggle with and how God deals with my heart and thoughts in the process of figuring out the right thing. The whole trusting the leadership that God has put in place is a tough one sometimes, isn’t it? I’ll spin it the other way too though. If a church determines that you’re competent enough to give you the job of technical director and entrusts you with that responsibility, they need to give you some leeway to make changes…even big changes. I’m sure they’ll question your reasoning and that’s okay, but in the event that they don’t understand your reasoning, I would hope that they trust you enough to say “even though we don’t understand, we trust your judgement and believe that what you’ve decided is best for everyone.” It’s certainly a huge balance that is hard to keep sometimes.

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