I met our next inductee while I was still
in high school. I called the local university and asked for
some help fixing the master dimmers for my high schools autotransformer
board. Since the school was built in the 1930s and it was then
the 1960s, these masters were saturable core dimmers. David
Thayer showed up and brought along one of his students. That
student was Louis Bradfield. Louie, will you please come to
Louie left Iowa in 1964, and after brief
stops in other entertainment centers, he settled in Las Vegas,
working at various showrooms up and down the strip. He is
a longtime member of IA Local 720, and has been head electrician
(previously the MGM Grand) in the Ziegfeld Theatre since
the building opened in 1972. During this time, he became
friends with George Thomas Howard, the building’s consultant.
Louis was responsible for the electro-mechanical systems
for the long running production of Hallelujah Hollywood,
and for the current show, now running 26 years, Jubilee. Many
of these systems are still in use today as he continues to maintain
and update equipment.
A survivor of the Casino fire at the MGM,
he was involved in the rebuilding of all these systems and
the theatre automation controls after the fire. In 2004, he
worked on the major update and redesign of the lighting system
to meet specifications of Ken Billington and Jason Kantrowitz.
Louis serves as faculty at the Stagecraft Institute of Las Vegas
and is a founding member of the advisory board for the Entertainment
Engineering and Design program in the colleges of Fine Arts
and Engineering at UNLV. He has been involved in the ESTA
Standards program since it began.
Louis has been a member of
the Institute since the 1960s, and has been a long time member
of the Engineering Commission and the Standards Committee.
He did many presentations in the 1970s and 1980s about production
in Las Vegas and the systems at Bally’s. During the Las Vegas Conference, he
was responsible for the Super Sessions and arranged for many
of the production teams of the Las Vegas shows to come and speak
at the conference. The success of those sessions was a direct
response to his dedication and attention to detail.
has been on one of Louis’s personal theatre tours knows
of his great knowledge and generous nature. He has served on
Standards, as a Director at Large, and is currently the Alternate
Liaison to the ESTA Technical Standards Committee.
great pleasure, I welcome you to the Fellows.
was one of four new Fellows to be inducted in a ceremony
at the 2009 Annual Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio. The honorary
designation is given to those selected by vote of the current
Fellows and is bestowed for life upon those members who have
made a truly outstanding contribution to the theatre and
the work of the Institute.
Click their names to read the
introductory remarks about the other new Fellows, Laura
Carl Lefko, and Bill