BETHANY, OK – Anyone who left town and has been away from Council Road Baptist Church for a year or two would scarcely believe their eyes if they returned today to this suburban church outside of Oklahoma City. The church’s sanctuary, described by its pastor as having a “1980s style look,” with a big choir loft, cavernous balcony and plain walls, hasn’t merely been updated, it’s been totally transformed into a modern worship facility.
Paragon 360 accomplished this metamorphosis by adding multiple faux wood, stone and custom-designed architectural elements to the stage and side walls of the sanctuary that were designed and built by Paragon 360. The transformation also included: ceilings that were painted black; 1200 contemporary theater seats, which replaced pews; and stylish new carpeting and paint schemes. Adding extra warmth and contemporary colorization to the new sanctuary is a collection of over 50 COLORado and COLORdash fixtures from CHAUVET Professional.
Positioning 42 COLORado Batten 72 Tour RGBWA linear LED effects around the worship stage, Paragon illuminated set walls, modesty walls and a large crucifix in vibrant colors. A group of nine COLORdash Par-Quad 18 compact RGBA LED par-style fixtures were also used to light and colorize an impressive series of towers positioned across the stage area.
“The colors we can produce with these fixtures are a big part of the modern look we’ve created in the church,” said Paragon’s Clayton Avery, who served as project manager on the Council Road Baptist renovation, which began in 2014, and included a new audio system and video projection production capabilities in addition to the upgraded LED lighting. “We transformed the sanctuary space by adding a variety of new and custom-designed scenic elements, and a key way we highlighted these changes was with vivid, contemporary lighting.”
As part of its project, Paragon 360 created a more intimate feeling in the church by covering little used areas that contributed to an unwelcoming empty look. For example, architectural and scenic elements were designed and built by Paragon 360 to conceal the older, existing choir loft (rather than going through the more costly option of tearing it out). The company also used a 200’ pleated velour curtain to closes off the balcony area during worship services. However, the curtain can be pulled back to create added seating for special events and productions.
“Flexibility was one of the things we wanted to build into this redesign,” said Avery. “Both contemporary and traditional services are now very much at home in the new facility. Special events and concerts are also now more easily accommodated.”
Lighting has contributed to this flexibility. The colors rendered by the COLORado and COLORdash fixtures, which are served by a CHAUVET Professional Data Stream 4 DMX Splitter, can be changed quickly to reflect the varying tenor of different services and events. Such capability would have been difficult to imagine when Council Road Baptist was last updated, but today this 53-year-old church has its worship facility firmly planted in the 21st Century.