Cabaret Lighting Designer Feature: Lexy Rile, Joshua Doss, Jacob Parks, and Will Nute

Q: Design inspiration?
A: Cabarets are pretty much peak musical theater – bright lights and saturated colors – but the show has many scenes that are kind of meant to be the antithesis of a cabaret. Because of this, we actually hung 2 different washes for this show, one with more saturation and one that was more neutral. This allowed us a wider variety in how we lit each scene and musical number in the show. The vanity lights and colored LEDs are also ideas we drew from nightclubs.

Q: Positives and challenges of lighting a musical in-concert?
A: Doing the musical in concert meant that practical lights, like the vanity lightbulbs, could exist on stage in one place, which is pretty much the only reason we were able to use them. Having an on-stage orchestra meant we had to be thoughtful in how we provided light for them, but also gave us more creative space. Also, because the show is in concert, there’s much more responsibility on the light designer to set each scene instead of using set pieces.

Q: Favorite light cue or effect? Is there something you’re excited for the audience to see?
Will: I’m really happy with how the end of Money turned out.
Josh: The cues right before intermission are great.
Lexy: I like the dark cue that happens in the Cabaret number.
Jacob: The abrupt change in mood at the end of act 1.

Q: LEDs, movers, gaff tape, or hazer? (tag urself)
Will: Movers because I’m impossible to work with but can do cool things sometimes
Josh: LEDs.
Lexy: Gaff tape because I value practicality.
Jacob: LEDs because I’ll make a reasonable attempt at anything you want, with a high probability of failure.

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