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Conference & Stage Expo
For the Record
Lighting Shines in Toronto

Anthony R. Phelps
Lighting Commission

With the 45th Annual Conference & Stage Expo not far away, it is never too early to think of what you would like to see there. Here are some ideas of things to look for from the Lighting Commission this year in Toronto.

Luc Lafortune is the Distinguished Lighting Designer this year. The Commission is pleased to honor Mr. Lafortune, who is best known for his collaboration with Cirque du Soleil for nearly 20 years, including Saltimbanco, Mystère, Alegría, Quidam, "O", La Nouba, and KA.

He has lit many headlining music artists such as Peter Gabriel, No Doubt, and the Eagles. In 1992, he won the Drama-Logue Theatre Award in Lighting Design for the show Saltimbanco. Lighting Dimensions International (LDI) selected Mr. Lafortune in 1994 as designer of the year.

In 1998, his lighting design for O won an Entertainment Design Award. Mr. Lafortune will share highlights of his design career, several of his design philosophies, and his thoughts on the lighting profession in the 2005 Distinguished Lighting Designer session.

There are a wide variety of session choices for the entire the conference. In partnership with the Gilbert Hemsley Internship, the Lighting Commission will host Dance Lighting for the New Lighting Designer, which will focus on how lighting from dance differs from traditional theatre lighting. Rep, Rep, Rep: The Challenges of Repertory Lighting will focus on keeping those plots, cues, and paperwork straight in a repertory situation. Those who want to know more about the uses of LEDs in theatrical lighting can come to Lighting Design Using LEDs and hear panelists discuss the possibilities. The session The History of Women in Lighting Design will look at the contributions of women to the profession. In Electricians on the Road panelists will share their experiences working on tour.

An exciting roundtable discussion about Mentoring the Young Lighting Designer is planned. Also being presented is The Best of Two Lighting CADs: Vectorworks Spotlight and LD Assistant/AutoCAD which will look at these two major lighting software programs. Fall Protection for Lighting: What to Wear will discuss fall protection equipment for the lighting technician as well as laws and safety practices concerning ladders and lifts.

This is just a sampling of the programming choices from the Lighting Commission; there are plenty more sessions, so check them out.

If you are interested in participating in the Lighting Commission, we have two planning meetings during the conference; these meetings are open to anyone. Feel free to bring your ideas for programming for the next conference to the meetings. The Lighting and Scene Design Commission Reception offers a social atmosphere to discuss lighting over drinks and hors d’ouevres. See you in Toronto!

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Luc Lafortune has won many honors for his innovations in lighting. He will receive the 2005 Distingished Achievement Award in Lighting Design at the Annual Conference & Stage Expo.