Light Up Your Theatrical Life... for £5!

Updated: Sep 22, 2019

Theatre technicians rigging lights to a lighting bar
Rigging the lighting at the ADC Theatre (photo courtesy of The Penguin Club)

Lighting is crucial in theatre. Not only does it ensure the cast are seen, it helps the audience focus on the right spot, gives a sense of place and time, and can even affect the mood of a scene. So lighting designers are theatrical VIPs – and directors with a knowledge of lighting are often behind the most atmospheric of productions.

That's why we're extremely pleased to announce that the first of the Pied Pipers Theatrical Workshops, supported by, will be a Lighting Workshop with professional lighting guru Paul Curtis!

Techies at a lighting and sound desk with a cue script
The old ADC tech booth (photo: Johannes Hjorth)

If you join us on Saturday 5th October at the ADC Theatre from 10:00 until 16:00, you'll receive a short briefing from Paul on the important considerations for theatrical lighting. Before long, you'll be inspecting a rig, experimenting with a lighting desk, and – most significant of all – exploring how to read a script from the perspective of lighting.

All 20 participants will get to handle the equipment first-hand. It promises to be an essential day for all aspiring amateur lighting designers and/or directors. But because of the limited number, booking is essential.

And, thanks to, the cost is only £5 for the day... including lunch!

In addition to benefiting from Paul's extensive expertise, though, you will also get to meet representatives from many of the Cambridge community theatre groups. Each society will pitch their next show(s) for you, giving you the chance to choose the show you want to make your lighting (or directorial) debut!

Also joining us will be representatives of The Penguin Club – Cambridge's specialist society of amateur theatrical technicians, which supports virtually all of the city's amdram productions. To continue your journey as a lighting designer, The Penguins will offer you all the ongoing support you need – including a fantastic community spirit.

Three technicians from The Penguin Club in hard hats examining a lighting bar
The Penguin Club at work on a lighting rig

Paul is the perfect facilitator to run our first grant-supported workshop. His professional credits include: the BBC Children In Need outdoor production in Norwich; Cromer Pier and King's Lynn pageants; Bodywork's production of Fame at the Princess Theatre in Torquay; and around 500 lighting plots and rigs for various production companies who brought their shows to the Mumford Theatre in Cambridge or the Rhodes Arts Centre in Bishops Stortford between 1986 and 2010.

Paul "retired" in 2013, but has continued to work as an ambassador for ETC's ColourSource LED equipment – a position he was invited into when the lighting technology company discovered Paul's book on the subject of theatrical lighting.

So we're immensely privileged to have Paul working with us for the first Pied Pipers Theatrical Workshop. To book a place on Paul's workshop, simply visit Eventbrite or email

Future workshops are also being planned on sound design, choreography, and more – all to be led by industry professionals. Watch this space for more news soon!

NB: We regret there is a minimum age limit of 17 for this workshop due to insurance restrictions.