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KOI-USA Awards
theatre judges

KOI-USA 2018 Announces Theatre Judging Panel

USA - The Knight of Illumination Awards USA (KOI-USA), which this year celebrates the achievements of show lighting and video designers in the United States for the first time, is pleased to reveal the highly esteemed theatre experts on the first ever Theatre judging panel for The Knight of Illumination Awards USA.

The KOI-USA Theatre judging panel:

  • Clifton Taylor - is a lighting designer and chair of the Theatre judging panel, Clifton has over 29 years' experience in creating lighting, projection and scenic designs for theatre, dance and opera around the world
  • David Rooney - is the chief theatre critic for Hollywood Reporter, David regularly reviews theatre and film and has been covering the entertainment industry since 1991. He has been a member of the New York Drama Critics Circle for 14 years, and is the winner of both Southern California Journalism Awards, and a National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Award for his theatre criticism
  • Deborah Jowitt - has been a professional dancer, lecturer and choreographer and Deborah began to write regularly about dance in The Village Voice in 1967. She has since written for The New York Times, Dance Magazine and Ballet Review, as well as publishing two collections and a further book,Time and the Dancing Image
  • Chris Jones - is the chief theatre critic and Sunday culture columnist for The Chicago Tribune. His reviews of theatre, performance, circus and comedy for the newspaper now number in the thousands, and in 2014 he became director of the National Critics' Institute at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre Center in Connecticut
  • Lauren Warnecke - is a freelance dance critic at The Chicago Tribune and has previously worked at Windy City Times, Dance Magazine and Pointe. She is founder and editor-in-chief of Art Intercepts, a Midwest-focused critical dance blog she created in 2009
  • Mark Swed - has been the classical music critic for The Los Angeles Times since 1996, having previously worked as a music critic for The Wall Street Journal, and the Los Angeles Herald Examiner
  • Celia Ipiotis - began her career as a ballet and modern dancer an choreographer. In 1976, Celia began collaborating with the pioneering video dance artist Jeff Bush, and their award-winning productions have been exhibited at World's Fairs and Festivals around the world. Celia is now creator, producer, and moderator of the nationally recognised culture seriesEYE ON DANCE & The Arts (EOD)

Panel Chair, Clifton Taylor comments, "There is so much beautiful work that is happening all over the country and I'm thrilled to be helping to shape a truly national award with a prestigious judging committee of arts critics representing the geographic diversity of the United States. I hope that designers from every scale and area of live theatre, opera and dance performances will submit their work for consideration and in the process, we are able to increase the visibility and understanding of the importance of lighting and projection design in our collective cultural conversation."

Nominations for the first Knight of Illumination Awards USA are open until the 31 July and can be made for all three categories on the Knight of Illumination USA website. The chosen winners will be unveiled at the 2018 ceremony and gala dinner at The Foundry, SLS Hotel, Las Vegas on October 20.

About the Knight of Illumination Awards

Since its inception in 2007, The Knight of Illumination Awards (KOI) has celebrated international lighting and video content design for entertainment. KOI-USA recognises work broadcast or performed in the US across the fields of Concert Touring & Events, Theatre and Live for Broadcast. Judging is carried out by three independent panels of industry experts. The KOI awards were conceived by renowned LD Durham Marenghi, Jennie Marenghi and Italian lighting manufacturer Claypaky who, along with ACT Lighting, are headline sponsor of the KOI-USA Awards. The Awards and ceremony are managed by America's leading entertainment technology trade show, LDI, in partnership with specialist content creation company The Fifth Estate on behalf of the KOI Committee.

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