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Lighting Design in Devised Work


As a lighting designer working in the business of theater it is quite rare to be asked to weigh in on the plot, specifically the story elements and script, of a typical production. I was given this opportunity during my final production at UCSD, the show Movers and Shakers. This piece, produced by Holum-Stein Productions, was given to us as a work in progress, with a loose plot for the second half of the show roughly outlined but with none of the normal trappings one usually finds in a script for a production of this size. Elements were missing like lines of dialogue, time of day and so forth. This production was what has been called a devised show, meaning that the

actors, designers, and director are invited to take on the role of not only being interpretive artists, as in a typical production, but also as generative artists, having a direct hand in the way the story would play out. This role led to some interesting challenges over the course of the production.

Throughout the process of Movers and Shakers, from design meetings to technical rehearsals, I was consistently called upon to have an opinion about other areas that are not traditionally under the purview of a lighting designer. Throughout this process, I was challenged as I had never been before, causing me to learn and grow as an artist in unique and interesting ways that will have a direct effect on my work as I transition into the professional world.

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