ETC is committed to mentoring students who have an interest in lighting and stage technology. One way the company achieves this is through its annual LDI Student Sponsorship, where a select group of students is awarded an all-expense-paid trip to the LDI tradeshow as a way to help launch their careers. The students have the opportunity to go the behind the scenes with ETC, to learn about the latest technologies, and to network with some of the industry's key figures. The Sponsorship also pairs the students with industry luminaries who serve as mentors, offering advice, inspiration and encouragement as they transition into the working world.
ETC is proud to announce the winners of this year's LDI Student Sponsorship:
Kristen Geisler is on her way to earning a master of fine arts in lighting design from the University of Tennessee. She holds a bachelor of art from the University of South Florida in theater design. Kristen has done the lighting design for shows at the Interlochen Center for the Arts, NC Stage Company, The WordPlayers Theater, Clarence Brown Theater, Tampa Repertory Theater and the University of South Florida. She also served as the lighting director for the main stage at the USITT conference in 2013 and 2014, and performed electrician work for a variety of events in Florida.
At the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Ben Golden is working toward a master of fine arts in theatre and drama with a lighting design emphasis, and researching his thesis on the use of project-based teaching in lighting design. He earned a bachelor of arts in theatrical design and production and American studies from St. Olaf College in Northfield, MN. He teaches lighting design and technology at UW-Madison. His lighting design credits include
All the Best, Jack!
at the Nova Theatre,
Next to Normal
Shrek The Musical
at the Heartland Theatre Festival, and
at the Music Theatre of Madison.
In 2013, Lillie Kahkonen earned an associate of art in Technical Theatre from Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland. She is currently earning a bachelor of science in Theatre Design and Production from Towson University, graduating in 2015. She has designed the lighting for shows at Towson University and Montgomery College, and has experience working as a board programmer, spotlight operator, assistant stage manager, fly operator and house electrician. She has also completed internships in lighting design and technical direction at Montgomery College's Summer Dinner Theatre.
Annette Roggenbuck began her college career at the College of Marin in California and will graduate in 2015 with a bachelor of fine art in lighting design from Southern Oregon University. She has served as a lighting technician and followspot operator for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, as a carpenter and stagehand for the San Francisco Opera, a wardrobe technician for the Mountain Play Association, and as a stagehand, electrician and assistant stage manager for the Stapleton Theatre Company. Annette is the lighting designer for the Camelot Theatre Company in Oregon for the 2014 and 2015 seasons.
Minghan Shi, an international Sponsorship recipient, holds a bachelor degree in lighting design from the National Academy of Chinese Theatre Arts, where he earned several outstanding student awards. He is currently earning a master degree in stage and lighting design at the Beijing Dance Academy. Minghan worked as a lighting designer at the BeiAo Dalu Company, where he designed the lighting for shows including a New Year Countdown at Beijing's Summer Palace. His designs have also appeared at the National Grand Theatre of China, Sofitel Xian Theatre, and Mei Lanfang Grand Theatre.
One of this year's international students, Ryan Shuker is pursuing a bachelor of dramatic art, specializing in lighting design for theatre and events, from the National Institute of Dramatic Art in Sydney, Australia. He has had internships with the Melbourne Theatre Company, Opera Australia and with lighting designer Damien Cooper. In 2013, Ryan worked on the Australian tour of Disney's
The Lion King
, and at the Sydney Theatre Company. He has also done production management and sound design and served as head electrician, sound technician and technical assistant during productions at his university.
Amanda Warren is earning a bachelor of fine arts in design and technology from Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, TX, with an expected graduation date of fall 2015. She has designed the lighting for several shows at her university, including
Tunnel of Love
Adam and the Experts
. This year, Amanda earned first place and 'best lighting design' in the Action Design Competition by Rose Brand and USITT. She also has experience in sound design and engineering, and was an electrics intern at the TriArts Sharon Playhouse in Connecticut.