Scottish Rite Valleys aren’t geographical features — they are respected groups of ranked Freemasons; several of which meet up twice a year in the Northeast to welcome new members. The Scottish Rite Valley of Boston, which represents four Massachusetts groups, meets with increasingly-theatrical displays designed to highlight 17th Century traditions. In order to accommodate the bi-yearly productions, the group hired Nashville-based LED video manufacturer PixelFLEX.
Dedicated to promoting personal character, leadership, and family values, the four bodies of the Scottish Rite Valley of Boston come together in the spring and fall to welcome new members to the fraternal organization. The Valley of Boston wanted to heighten the experience behind the ceremony, so they installed a new FLEXLite LED video system from PixelFLEX.
“At the Scottish Rite Valley of Boston, we have a stage in Gothic Hall with full scale production equipment that you would expect to see in any regional theatre,” says Eugene “Cappy” Capobianco, First Lieutenant Commander, Massachusetts Consistory Scottish Rite Valley of Boston.
“We rely upon these production elements for our new candidate orientation, where each of the four bodies within the organization produces an allegory for the benefit of the candidates to understand all of the ‘32 Degrees of the Orders’.”
“As part of the productions, we were spending a lot of money and storage space on the various backdrops, so one day we came up with the idea to begin renting a LED wall for our stills and video backdrops. This eventually led us to the purchase of our own FLEXLite LED video wall which has been a great addition for our production crew and our entire membership.”
The PixelFLEX Solution
FLEXLite LED from Nashville-based PixelFLEX is a video solution for both indoor and outdoor designs. With its bright display and high refresh rate, incorporating FLEXLite into any production takes little effort, and its easy access back panels allow for on-site repairs.
Built with a die cast aluminum frame, FLEXLite is available in two sizes, 500mm x 500mm or 1000mm x 500mm, and is also available in 2.6mm-6.25mm pixel pitch options.
“I’m an electrical contractor by trade, and when I initially discussed the idea of using LED video over traditional backdrops with the heads of the four bodies and our technical director, everyone agreed it was a good idea,” continued Cappy.
“We began by renting an LED wall for our productions and everyone liked it so much, we started looking at purchasing the technology for ourselves. At our next meeting, PixelFLEX joined us via conference call and then we took a trip to Nashville and decided to install our FLEXLite LED video wall that now measures 18-feet high by 30-feet wide for a beautiful, full-stage backdrop.”
With that decision made, it was time to install the LED video wall on the 7th floor of the Grand Lodge, inside Gothic Hall.
Scottish Rite Valley of Boston: Also Handy in AV
Using extensive electrical and theatrical design experience, Cappy and the production team were confident that they could install the FLEXLite LED system themselves.
“First, we set up the piping per the specs to hang the wall, and then as the panels arrived, we were able to easily connect them together down the line. We then built a breakout box to connect power, installed the cables into our plug-and-play system from PixelFLEX, and away it went running entirely off six 220-volt 20A circuits,” Cappy says.
The Scottish Rite Valley of Boston got to work creating their new production designs. As each of the four body heads would produce their own piece for the meeting, the FLEXLite system immediately created boundless opportunities that could not be achieved with static backdrop.
“For the content, we have used a combination of both moving and still graphics,” explained Cappy. “To decide which content is used, the head of each body sits down with our technical director during the design and rehearsal process and they develop the imagery for their specific production.”
Ready for the productions to take flight with the FLEXLite LED video wall in place, Cappy was eager to see the reaction of the new and current membership. Knowing their dedication to creating true theatrical productions at the Scottish Rite Valley of Boston, the dynamic capabilities of an LED video system made an immediate impact.
“Our productions have always been theatrical in nature, no different from any community or regional theatre nationwide,” he concluded.
“We do this for the benefit of our current and prospective membership, so when we came to the crossroads of being able to update our technical system with the latest technology, we had to take it. With four different bodies, putting on different plays throughout the course of the day, the FLEXLite LED video wall allows us to do so much more than a traditional backdrop, and it really takes our productions to a new level.”