Welcome to 2016 and to a special two-part interview. This week we sit down with four-time Tony Award winning lighting designer Kevin Adams! In this first part, Kevin discusses his unique route to becoming a lighting designer, which included working as a scenic designer on the West Coast, working on music videos and commercials, and even being a go-go dancer! He shares with us his thoughts on lighting education, why he loves gardening, whether we’re embracing LED technology too quickly, and what he thinks is one of his biggest weaknesses as a designer. He has great stories from the design processes of ‘American Idiot’, both the original and recent versions of ‘Hedwig’, and ‘Hands on a Hardbody.’ Come back next week to hear stories from ‘Next to Normal’, how he has freed himself from the tech table, and what happened when he met Peter Sellers!
Kevin Adams Broadway design credits include Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Tony Award), American Idiot (Tony Award, Henry Hewes Award), Spring Awakening (Tony Award), Next To Normal (Tony nomination), Hands on a Hardbody, the revival of Hair (Tony nomination), Everyday Rapture, Man and Boy, On a Clear Day You Can See Forever, Passing Strange, Take Me Out, the American production of The 39 Steps (Tony and Drama Desk Awards), Latinologues, The Good Body, Sexaholoic, A Almost Holy Picture, Hedda Gabler, A Class Act, and Getting and Spending.
Off-Broadway credits include the revivals of Rent and Carrie, Brooklynite, The Scottsboro Boys, While I Yet Live, Satchmo at the Waldorf, The Illusion, Boy’s Life, Peter and Jerry, Some Men, The Donkey Show, and Betty’s Summer Vacation. He’s designed solo shows for Eric Bogosian, Eve Ensler, John Leguizamo, and Anna Deveare Smith. Other credits inlcude Rigoletto at the Metropolitan Opera, Candide (Lincoln Center), Donmar Warehouse, Steppenwolf Theatre, Yale Rep, NY City Opera, Blue Man Group (Las Vegas, Hollywood Bowl, North American tour, Berlin), Audra McDonald at Joe’s Pub, Town Hall and Lincoln Center, Sandra Bernhard’s 1990 film Without You I’m Nothing.
He has designed new work by Tony Kushner, Neil Simon, Terrance McNally, Edward Albee, and Christopher Durang and received an Obie and two Lortel awards for his work Off-Broadway.
Photo by Stephen Joseph