Rumblings of a Romance Renaissance was performed at The Mint Space in New York City in 1997. The play was written by Gavin O’Connor and directed by Alfredo DeVilla. I worked on the production as the lighting designer.
Alfredo’s background was filmmaking, and he wanted to bring some cinematic lighting conventions to the play, so he chose me as the Lighting Designer based on my film reel and the fact I’d also done lighting for theater and events. He wanted to achieve a noir version of “Edward Hopper” for the lighting and set design. It was fun and challenging to bring a cinematic sensibility to the stage.
One thing that makes lighting design for the theater different from Cinematography is you get to work with the sensitivity and dynamic range of the human eye, on the other hand, the lighting has to be out of the way all of the time, or if on the stage, a well motivated practical. The other problem is the actors are moving all of the time, so it’s hard to tweak the lighting to perfection for every position and cue. In the case of this play, I could count on the actors hitting their marks with precision, so I was able to light in a manner very similar to the way I do for film. It helped that moving in and out of pools of light was motivated by the story, a noir romantic comedy.
In one of the scenes pictured below, Elizabeth Rossa and Jennifer Krater are at a desk, the desk lamp to the left of the actors was their key, with very little fill coming from the overhead theatrical lighting units. Some Fresnel back lights with pale blue gels complete the scene and provide separation from the background.
The other thing that makes lighting design for the theater different from cinematography is that after the dress rehearsal you can adjust lighting cues, and you can do it again after each performance if you want to. There’s this ability to fine tune the lighting that you simply don’t have in film. It was fun to work the lighting board and think about little tweaks that would make the lighting a little better. And the work I did on this play I think had a good influence on my film work, just as my film work has a good influence on my lighting design. Light, after all, is what give theater and film a sense of another world that is real.
Rumblings of a Romance Renaissance was performed at The Mint Space in New York City on January 30, 31, February 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 1997. Written by Gavin O’Connor, directed by Alfredo DeVilla, featuring Mark Jupiter, Jennifer Krater, Gavin O’Connor, and Elizabeth Rossa. Lighting Design by David Tamés, Set Design by Rona Taylor, Executive Producer: Greg O’Connor, Producer: Cindy Nelson Mullen, Associate Producer: Kara Smith.
Return to the Projects List.