United Moments of America

Division III Thesis Project - March 2013
Hampshire College Red Barn - Amherst, MA

UMA is a culmination of all the ways I like to see light used in performance.

As a theatrical lighting designer, my most rewarding collaborations have been with sound designers. I love to create that perfect cue, that perfect moment of synergy between visual and auditory stimulus.

As a more general theater artist, I’ve been interested for some time with how live performance can eschew the traditional setup of human performance being set in stone first and informing the technical design elements second. What if the design elements are present right from the beginning and are on the same playing field as the human? What if they all inform each other every step of the way?

With UMA I strove to create an environment where lighting, video and dance could collaboratively create a performance; informing each other every step of the way. Dan Deacon’s album America acts as the skeleton and the question “How do the individual moments of our lives combine to form an American experience?” acts as the goal. I hope you enjoy what we’ve created.


Lighting Design: Saulius Slezas

Video Design: Brendan (Thor) Chapin

Choreography (Prettyboy, USA: I, Lots): Esme Vaandrager

Choreography (True Thrush, USA: 3, 4): Laila Copperansky

Dancers: Forrest Hejkal, Miriam King, Sara McDaniel

(Invaluable) Production Assistants: Sophie Moss, Isa Moss

Special Thanks: Greg Jutkiewicz, John Bruner, Andrew Hart, Allie Connell, Smith College Theater, Amy Putnam, Delicious Sin, Steven Santos, Hampshire College Event Services, Matthew Haber, Jessica Greenberg, Ellen Donkin, Wayne Kramer, Peter Kallok, Sam Whitney, Jeff Porter, Luke Hrabal, Harry Grillo, Rachel Shainwald, Jesse Pliska.

All Things Lighting