My passion for theatre lighting began very early when I was involved with my local amateur dramatics group and began operating the Junior 8 dimmers back stage. I was 10 years old.
From there, I went on to follow spot operate shows for the famous North Pier variety acts in Blackpool, whilst still at school. I remember we used to climb over the theatre roof to reach the operating position. After leaving school I began as aprentice at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester.
Since then I've enjoyed an extensive career across theatre and opera and been able to collaborate with the directorial influences of Max Stafford Clark, Stephen Daldry, Ian Rickson and Dominic Cooke.
Many of my West End credits include: Dear Lupin, Fences, What the Butler Saw, Some Like It Hiphop, Betrayal, Speaking in Tongues (What’s on Stage Nomination), Via Dolorosa, Fat Pig, Top Girls, & Beautiful Thing.
West End and New York credits include: My Name is Rachel Corrie, Shopping & Fucking, Guantanamo. Plus direct transfers to New York Include: Haunted, The Steward of Christendom, Our Lady of Sligo, Arabian Nights, and Rose.
I've also been fortunate to experience a long and successful career as Head of Lighting at the Royal Court Theatre, where I designed the lighting for over 50 new Royal Court plays and was very proud to be one of the lighting architects of the refurbished Royal Court Theatre in 2000.
In 2008 I left the Royal Court Theatre to focus my energy on a freelance lighting career. During the past few years I have lit a greater number of International Theatre and Opera productions, classics across the U.K. and new writing, which is a passion of mine.
I took up the role of Associate Artist with Theatre 503 in 2013 and I'm very pleased to be collaborating with the new artistic director, Lisa Spirling.
In 2015 I was awarded a Fellowship to Guildhall School for Music & Drama in recognition of my contribution to theatre lighting.
In 2018 I took up the role of Chair for the Association of Lighting Designers. I also enjoy writing for the ALD magazine ‘Focus’.
White Lights - Leading Lights
Live Design Online USA - 5Q's Johanna Town
Robe Lighitng - 'Pines'
Chauvet Lighting - A Kings Ransom
Sheffield Theatres Julius Ceasar - '60secs with.."
The Stage - Lighting Designer Johanna Town
The Stage - Focus on Diversity
Theatre Crafts - Lighting of King Lear
Lectures and Spoken at:
Internation and Theatre Engineering Architecture Conference 2014
PLASA Seminar 2012
ShowLight Seminar 2007
Royal Scottish Academy of Music & Drama, Mountview Theatre School, Royal Academy of Music & Drama
2013 Offie nomination for ‘Best Lighting Designer’ for 'A Life of Stuff' at Theatre 503.
2010 Shortlisted for WhatsOnStage Award ‘Best Lighting Designer’ for 'Speaking in Tongues' at Duke of York’s Theatre.
2010 Winner of Best production 'A Raisen In The Sun' Manchester Theatre Awards
1992 Fringe nomination for 'Crackwalker' at The Gate Theatre.