In tandem with a PillowVoices podcast episode which draws upon archival recordings of design luminaries including Jennifer Tipton, Beverly Emmons, Tom Skelton, and Mark Stanley, this playlist gathers together a few of the notable Pillow performances in which lighting has played a major role.
Okwui Okpokwasili & Peter Born
Swallow the Moon, 2021
From Peter Born’s remarkable headpieces to the transition between natural and artificial light, this site-specific work created a special world in its natural setting.
jumatatu m. poe
Let 'im Move You, 2021
In a fully-immersive environment, the work of designer Juan Co-eL Rodriguez became an important element in the overall look and feel of this production.
When this work received its New York premiere in 2004, The New York Times reported, “Mark London’s lighting designs gave the dancers the chilly heroic muscular look of Blakean angels at times.”
Miami City Ballet
The bright-white lighting employed for decades at New York City Ballet by Ronald Bates and recreated here by James Leitner is augmented in this production by a backlit velour backdrop with holes cut out to simulate a starry sky.
Hubbard Street Dance Chicago
I Remember Clifford, 1995
Part of Jennifer Tipton’s task in designing this world premiere by Twyla Tharp was to simulate a bar at the rear of the stage to help evoke different settings.
Tere O'Connor Dance
Heaven Up North, 1989
The tight confines of the Ruth St. Denis Studio were pushed to the limit in this presentation from the Pillow’s festival-within-a-festival known as Splash!, with Brian MacDevitt’s lighting on full display.
Willy Cessa’s lighting is an essential element in this work by Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, in which a program note tells us that “different patterns of sound and different sources of light come together to create a constellation.”
Jessica Lang Dance
Within the Space I Hold, 2013
Nicole Pearce has designed extensively for Jessica Lang over a number of years, including this work which premiered at the Pillow. (Be sure to watch until the end of this clip when the light-up tutu has its moment!)
Tero Saarinen Company and The Boston Camerata
Borrowed Light, 2012
Revered as one of Europe’s most sought-after lighting designers, Mikki Kunttu evoked the Shakers’ inventive concept of bringing natural light into their buildings.
The Pillow’s Director of Technical Production created the eye-catching designs for Blush, prompting one critic to exclaim, “Vincent Vigilante’s lighting design was the real show-stealer.”
Dana Reitz / Jennifer Tipton
Necessary Weather, 1997
Subtitled “A Choreography of Movement and Light,” this groundbreaking collaboration positioned choreography, lighting design, and performance all on the same plane.
Mark Morris Dance Group
Falling Down Stairs, 1994
In addition to the dozens of stage works that Michael Chybowski has designed for Mark Morris, he also created the lighting for this film that was created in the Pillow’s Doris Duke Theatre.
Howell Binkley (1956-2020) was a key creative partner to David Parsons from the inception of the Parsons Dance Company, devising the jaw-dropping effects that have made Caught a surefire hit for decades.
Trisha Brown Dance Company
Set and Reset, 1986
With scenic elements and a film created by Robert Rauschenberg, the lighting design by Beverly Emmons became a key creative contribution to this Pillow-commissioned work.
Les Grands Ballets Canadiens
Nicholas Cernovitch evoked early 20th-century lighting effects to bring this early work by Ruth St. Denis and Doris Humphrey back to breathtaking life.
José Limón Dance Company
The Moor's Pavane, 1951
Beginning her career at a time when lighting designers weren’t often given program credit, Jean Rosenthal nonetheless made her mark, as in this example of delineating a tightly-confined space for a modern dance classic.