Wanting to get your opinion on "for and against placing the worship band off stage". Many of the old old school musos have said that the band is in a servant role and does not need to be onstage ( as opposed to the singers). Egos have been displayed but many musos and even some WL's, suffer the hangups of NOT being on stage.  Is it an ego thing, or is it entertainment or in some cases the only gig going? ( I hope not).

What are the thoughts there, please?

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I may be wierd, but I thought all in any sort of ministry were in a servant role. Are you saying that there are churches where the singers are on a stage and those that play the music are hidden somewhere? Does that mean nobody who plays an instrument can sing at the same time? Does it mean that there are no parts of a song when only instruments are playing while nobody is singing? Please pardon my ignorance here--I've never heard of anything like this and am trying to figure out both how it works and why it would be done.
Mmmmm.... it does seem weird for sure, except some traditional churches do not have the room in front of everyone i.e. very small pulpit area.. Also, this one church I am thinking of does have a acoustic guitar/ singer lead from the side; they say they have no issues as long as they can worship with what they have got.
Most traditional churches have always had the piano and organ right up front as well as the choir. It's probably the majority rather than the minority. So having a band up front is just an extension of that.

You can't lead from the side, but you can have a band on the side. That being said, it's a logistical nightmare to make it work.
on stage .. without a doubt .. everyone on stage.
Hope you don't mind if I ask WHY, do you have to be on stage?? I am not against either way, just exploring the need to be on stage.
Up until the change in instruments i.e. electric guitars and drums etc. , NOW there has been a paradine shift to musos have to be on stage. Before that the organ, piano and even some choirs were to the side; so why the change? Personally I still think that whoever is doing the worship leading stays where they can "lead" the church into and through worship.
I'm not sure where you're from, but in the US, we've had instruments, singers and leaders on stage for years - at least as long as I can remember in my 48 short years. When I was a kid, all we had were pianos and organs up front with massive choirs - all up on stage. So it's normal for me to see instruments and singers up front.

The more realistic question is to ask, "Why do you have to be off stage?" In other words, it's been so much the norm to be up front since I can remember (in America). To pull the band off the stage and over to the side is kind of a weird paradigm shift. Pulling them off to the side suddenly puts an emphasis on them and highlights something that we had never even thought of. I'd say it's more disruptive and frankly takes away the whole interaction thing that worship is about.
Onstage or offstage - everybody together.

To me, it's a matter of logistics and group precision. When I started playing at my present situation, I was on one side of the platform and the drummer was at the other end, with 2-3 singers in-between. Bad. Tempo problems - We couldn't see each other, coordinate or find the right beat. Once I got moved closer to the drum set that WENT AWAY. People on and off the team commented on the improvement.

Some churches may be so small you can't have everyone in the same place. But please, whatever group, keep them together as much as possible...
My advice is to not make this an issue - it will just detract from the reason you're there in the first place. For the most part (except for special occasions), I think where you stand is simply a logistics thing. Where is the space available? The moment we start debating which is more spiritual, etc, is the moment we start to miss the point of it all.

Remember that you are LEADING worship, and most leaders do that from the front. Does the pastor preach from the lobby?
That is really weird. All of the other servants are out where people can see so I don't know how this came about.
I attended an Episcopal church for a while that had all instruments in a loft behind the congregation. They were out of sight even if you turned around - recessed back from sight. There was one song leader up front in the pulpit who lead both the "orchestra" and the congregation. They didn't do any modern stuff, it was all from the Anglican hymnals, but they did have piano, acoustic guitar and sometimes some percussion. It was pretty dry and lifeless. I'm not sure if it had so much to do with the placement of the instruments as with the spirit of the whole thing.

But I'm very sure that it would have been more lively if they had been in front of the people helping to lead. My own congregation looks to us, the Praise Team, for the sense of joy and we feel that our goal is to infect them with that every week. It's kind of hard to do that when you're tucked back in a pit, or eve just off to the side. It says, "the band is insignificant, don't worry about them."

So if you're going to do something like that, don't waste your time and money, play CD's and tapes to lead the music.
I think you have to consider if you or the other singers/instrumentalists are a distraction on the platform. If so, then maybe a move would be a consideration, or maybe just a change in musicians. If you think overtime that it would be more distracting and less worshipful to move the band, then maybe the band should stay on the platform. There has to be a reason for what we do as worship leaders....is it going to be more worshipful? Is it going to be less distracting? In the end is it going to be more God glorifying?

Personally, I like the idea of moving the band. To be able to serve in the background....to not be distracted myself by seeing people not singing or seeing them do things other than participate in worship.....to have it be less about us and more about Christ. By not staring at the band it may open the door for people to focus more on the words that are on the screen...thus focusing more on what they are singing which leads them to the throneroom of God and into His presence. It's not about us....It's about leading them into God's presence and getting ourselves out of the way. Follow the Spirit....


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