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Old September 15th, 2008, 06:14 AM   #1
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What is it with function suite managers?

I need a rant...

My last 3 experiences in function suites have had this in common. Here are three of the questions I always ask when I go to see where the event is taking place.

Question 1: Will the tables be arranged just like this at the function I am filming next week/on Saturday/tonight? Invariable answer: Yes. Does that actually happen: NO.

Question 2: Will anyone be using PA/radiomics at this do? Or will anyone else in the hotel be using PA/radiomics when the function I'm filming is being held? Invariable answer: No. Is this what actually happens: NO.

Will the Toastmaster/Best man/Chairperson etc definitely warn me when the function/the speeches/the cake cutting etc is about to start? Invariable answer: (rather huffy) Of course! We have a great deal of experience...etc etc. Do they in fact do this: NO.

Maybe these people have a sadistic streak that makes them want move the previously well lit top table to the darkest place in the room, equip it with quite unnecessary wireless PA that plays a whole chord's worth of mains frequency harmonics (thus producing a bagpipe-drone effect through the speeches) and then feed me with totally false information about what is to happen and where and when, quite possibly while competing with the 60s disco night next door.

Please tell me it's not always like this.
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Old September 15th, 2008, 07:08 AM   #2
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I feel your pain.

Just the other day I was filming a wedding. I was using a PD150, the 2nd operator was using the FX7.

Now, I'd said to the venue staff and the band, "please keep the lights up a bit just for the first few dances" I'm not talking blackpool illuminations, but just not as dark as they would normally have it.

The staff were fine with it, the band were fine with it, the bride and groom were fine with it.

30 seconds into the 1st dance, some daft wee bar person decides to turn the lights down (in fact he turned them off, completely, fiddled about for a few seconds and finally settled on a setting that was waaaaaay to dark, I had to use +15 gain on the PD150, and the FX7, even with the gain up full (+18db) it is totally unusable.

This happens quite alot.

And dont even get me started on the whole "you'll give me a nod when your about about to announce the speaches"

"Of course I will"

Do they? Do they heck!

I find that in addition to all the neccessary skils you need (camera, editing etc...) you also need to somewhat of a mind reader
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Old September 15th, 2008, 07:08 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin McDonald View Post
I need a rant...

My last 3 experiences in function suites have had this in common. Here are three of the questions I always ask when I go to see where the event is taking place.

Question 1: Will the tables be arranged just like this at the function I am filming next week/on Saturday/tonight? Invariable answer: Yes. Does that actually happen: NO.

Question 2: Will anyone be using PA/radiomics at this do? Or will anyone else in the hotel be using PA/radiomics when the function I'm filming is being held? Invariable answer: No. Is this what actually happens: NO.

Will the Toastmaster/Best man/Chairperson etc definitely warn me when the function/the speeches/the cake cutting etc is about to start? Invariable answer: (rather huffy) Of course! We have a great deal of experience...etc etc. Do they in fact do this: NO.

Maybe these people have a sadistic streak that makes them want move the previously well lit top table to the darkest place in the room, equip it with quite unnecessary wireless PA that plays a whole chord's worth of mains frequency harmonics (thus producing a bagpipe-drone effect through the speeches) and then feed me with totally false information about what is to happen and where and when, quite possibly while competing with the 60s disco night next door.

Please tell me it's not always like this.
Good god I'm doing my first wedding on the 22nd and this sounds horrific. Am practicing with my wireless lavs today but luckily have a minidisc for emergency backup should there be other intruding wireless!
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Old September 15th, 2008, 09:50 AM   #4
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Hmmm. I don't know if I am alone on this one. I usually light the reception with 2 Lowell lights, 1 worklight ( hair lights) for talking head. I turn-off the lights during first dance when DJ wants to create ambience but other than that, I light the entire thing. I even have a sun gun attached to my camera for table shots.
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Old September 15th, 2008, 10:54 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Noel Lising View Post
Hmmm. I don't know if I am alone on this one. I usually light the reception with 2 Lowell lights, 1 worklight ( hair lights) for talking head. I turn-off the lights during first dance when DJ wants to create ambience but other than that, I light the entire thing. I even have a sun gun attached to my camera for table shots.
and nobody minds all those lights?
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Old September 15th, 2008, 11:12 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Louis Maddalena View Post
and nobody minds all those lights?
I have no complaints at all. I do turn-off the lights during first dance and public dance so the DJ can show off his moving lights effect but for the rest of the evening I have the lights turned on. If you set the lights high enough, it won't be much of a distraction.
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Old September 15th, 2008, 11:31 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noel Lising View Post
Hmmm. I don't know if I am alone on this one. I usually light the reception with 2 Lowell lights, 1 worklight ( hair lights) for talking head. I turn-off the lights during first dance when DJ wants to create ambience but other than that, I light the entire thing. I even have a sun gun attached to my camera for table shots.
And I thought I was doing OK on the last one carrying a Canon XHA1 + HV 30 and all their accessories on a plane as hand baggage. The PAGlight, batteries and tripod in went in my suitcase. I need to work out where I could stick Lowell lights without walking too funny.

Last edited by Colin McDonald; September 15th, 2008 at 12:05 PM. Reason: speling
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Old September 15th, 2008, 11:54 AM   #8
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To the OP, yeah, this is a common problem. Just this weekend I had issues with a DJ.

- was supposed to cue me just prior to music starting for processional

- was supposed to cue me for the start of toasts

- was supposed to give me 60 seconds to prep for first dance


Did he do ANY of these? No. Some DJ/coordinators are better than others, but I never trust them to do what they promise.
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Old September 15th, 2008, 11:56 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin McDonald View Post
And I thought I was doing OK on the last one carrying a Canon XHA1 + HV 30 and all their acessories on a plane as hand baggage. The PAGlight, batteries and tripod in went in my suitcase. I need to work out where I could stick Lowell lights without walking too funny.
I hear you. LOL.
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Old September 15th, 2008, 02:43 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Noel Lising View Post
I usually light the reception with 2 Lowell lights,
I turn-off the lights during first dance when DJ wants to create ambience but other than that, I light the entire thing...
same here 2x500w lowell,
but I turn it on for the first dance, parents dance, ceneter piece, garter, bouquet; that's it, the rest is with on camera 20w
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Old September 15th, 2008, 09:52 PM   #11
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No wedding I have ever done has gone to plan. I did one in August where the Mother of the Bride was an hour late for the reception...

I just use a LitePanels Micro and it works fine for everything. I always leave the gain at 0. The only people that complain are the drunks when I do interviews.

T
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