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How to build an outdoor performance stage

Updated April 17, 2017

A raised outdoor performance stage constructed of wood can enhance the overall sound at an outdoor concert while also providing a protective structure for electronics and other stage equipment. An outdoor stage elevates the band so more of the crowd can see the performance, and consequently increases the projection of sound across the audience. Outdoor stages are usually constructed of hardwood and treated with sealant to protect against inclement weather. Outdoor stages should be constructed on solid, level ground.

Choose a level, hard surface where the stage will be built. Keep in mind the preferred orientation of the audience.

Draw to scale a plan for the stage. Estimate the amount of wood and nails necessary to complete the task.

Select a sturdy hardwood from the lumber yard to use for construction. Select large planks, at least 2-by-4 inches, to cut down to create the stage surface. Choose four hardwood blocks to create the foundations for the corner of the stage.

Dig holes for each of the corner supports of the stage. Insert the blocks of wood for the foundation and fill in the remaining space around the blocks with the dirt extracted from the holes.

Cut the planks of hardwood to size, and connect the four corner blocks using the planks and nails. Fill in the middle of the stage with the remaining planks, adding a hardwood brace in the middle of the stage to maintain structural integrity.

Sand the completed stage and treat the wood with sealant to prevent rotting and degradation.

Tip

For bigger stages, use more block foundations in the middle of the stage to prevent sagging.

Warning

Never build an outdoor stage on loose soil or sand.

Things You'll Need

  • Hardwood
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Sealant
  • Saw
  • Shovel
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About the Author

William Paul Wentzell is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, holding bachelor's degrees in English and photojournalism. His work has been published in the New York Times, Deseret News, The Victoria Advocate and The Daily Texan.