No flash was allowed unfortunately.
By who ? - that band that was employing you ?
Would you have still done the job if they had banned use of camera too ? - you would say 'I cant do the job if you cant let me use the right tools'
The more this is not said about flash and gigs the harder it gets for everyone
You have to learn the power of persuasion - much harder than taking pictures - the real art in fact ?
Sometimes you can sneakily use flash when the lightshow goes into a stroby bit - hiding an off camera flash by a monitor or in the light rig can help but then you need fancy pocket wizards
show me some great rock photography that is not either flashed or in a big venue with a huge lighting rig ..
Ok things are changing with alsmot usable 6400 ISO on a couple of cameras - but that doesnt control the wide contrast range in a spotlit scene
Dragging the shutter - shooting with flash and using a long shutter speed somewhere between 1/8th to 1 second for gigs - the short duration of the flash freezes action while the long exposure hoovers up a lot of ambient lighting in a blurred manner that gives the impression of speed
the attached wedding band not a great picture but
-flash is off camera giving sculptural light and avoiding white out of the guitar headstock
-ambient dragged shutter kills flash shadow and warms the room
-F8 means it is sharp
-200 ISO means no noise in the file
All text book stuff - finger on lens is the only element of the image that you should not attempt to emulate!
Oh and if you have to use no flash - go for 180th shutter - wide aperture and look for the artist moving into pools of light and keeping still while having expression - it will happen a couple of times in a gig if you watch like a hawk and focus like a ninja
richard ashcroft - big gig lights - still required maximum concentration on the lighting, a soulful moment, and a D3 and 400 2.8 to get that shot (the eye is downrezzed by 60%)