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Thesis (M.A.)—University of Nebraska—Lincoln, 1962. Department of Speech and Dramatic Art.


Copyright 1962, the author. Used by permission.


To light the production of J.B., the lighting designer is required to use a great variety of mounting positions, instruments, and color media.It follows that great flexibility of dimmer control is required.

The problem of this thesis is to design and execute the lighting of the University Theatre production of J.B. so that the lighting is an integral part of the production and not a separate entity.The lighting must reflect immediately the subtleties of the intention of the original artist, Archibald MacLeish, and his subsequent interpreters, the director and designer.To approach this task, the following steps were taken:

(1) Repeated line readings and meetings with the director.

(2) A study of past productions of J.B.

(3) An analysis of the script in the Aristotelian terms of plot, character, theme, language, rhythm, and spectacle.

(4) Conferences with the director and designer to understand their interpretations of these Aristotelian terms for the play.

(5) All the drawing and construction necessary for the execution of the lighting.

(6)The supervision of the mounting and focusing of the instruments; also, supervision of color media in the instruments and light intensities.

(7) The selection of qualified critics to evaluate the lighting as it appears during production.

(8) An analysis of the critics’ reactions to the lighting of the play.

The end goal of this project is simply to create a lighting design in harmony with a particular director of a specific production J.B. at the University of Nebraska Theatre.

Advisor: William R. Morgan