AARON BLACK's collection of work runs the gamut of disciplines from lighting design for dance, theatre, and opera, to production design and art direction for television, to large-scale architectural and thematic design for leading family amusement parks.
As a lighting designer, his New York theater credits include the Drama Desk Award winning revival of BLACK NATIVTY at the Duke on 42nd St, THREE SISTERS at the Gatehouse (for which he received his fifth Audelco Award Nomination for Outstanding Lighting Design), THE SUPREME TARTUFFE at Theater Row Studios, KING LEAR, WAITING FOR GODOT, FUNNYHOUSE OF A NEGRO (Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Lighting Design), TROJAN WOMEN, MOTHER COURAGE AND HER CHILDREN, and DREAM ON MONKEY MOUNTAIN (Audelco Award for Outstanding Lighting Design) for the Classical Theatre of Harlem; HECUBA at The Bleecker Street Theater; ALMOST BLUE (World Premiere) at the Flatiron Theatre; NO COMMON THREAD and OPEN FIELD at the Cunningham Studios; PINK (World Premiere) and CROOKED (World Premiere) NYC Summer Play Festival at the new 42nd Street Theatres; SOAR LIKE AN EAGLE at Theatre Row Studios; Benadict Mason’s ASKO PARADISO, THE FIFTH MUSIC: RESUME WITH C.P.E. Bach for Alarm Will Sound (World Premiere); ALARM WILL SOUND AT CARNEGIE HALL including the New York Premiere of “1969”, and GETTING HOME for Second Stage. Regionally he has designed productions for American Repertory Theater (IRNE Nomination for Outstanding Lighting Design), Two River Theater Company, Florida Repertory Theater, The Repertory Theater of St. Louis, Warehouse Repertory Theatre, The Institute for Contemporary Theatre in Boston, Pittsburgh Public Playhouse, People’s Light and Theater Co., The Folger Shakespeare Library, The Carnival Center for the Performing Arts in Miami. His lighting design on tour has been featured at Dartmouth, Duke University, Middlebury College, Purdue University, The University of Tennessee, SUNY Purchase, Earlham College, and The University of Rochester.
His Opera lighting credits include productions for THE LOS ANGELES PHILHARMONIIC, THE ROYAL OPERA HOUSE, NEW YORK CITY OPERA, PORTLAND OPERA, BARD SUMMERSCAPE, GLIMMERGLASS OPERA, OPERA MONTREAL, CANADIAN OPERA COMPANY, MINNESOTA OPERA, CHICAGO OPERA THEATER, SPOLETO FESTIVAL USA, OPERA BILBAO, VIRGINIA OPERA, PITTSBURGH OPERA, OPERA OMAHA, BOSTON LYRIC OPERA, OPERA BOSTON, VIRGINIA OPERA ASSOCIATION, KANSAS CITY LYRIC OPERA, MANHATTAN SCHOOL OF MUSIC.
Showing a great propensity for diversity Mr. Black’s lighting design credits also include the tour for PRINCESS SUPERSTAR - New York Magazine’s Single White and Famous the story of a Sicilian-Jewish rapper dance music diva, the world premiere of ANOTHER COUNTRY at Columbia University, the US premiere of THE UMBRELLAS OF CHERBOURG for the Two River Theatre Company, and the world premiere of THE PUZZLE LOCKER by the Obie Award winning playwright W. DAVID HANCOCK.
As a Production Designer and Art Director with numerous projects such as the MTV VIDEO MUSIC AWARDS, CMT – ARTIST OF THE YEAR, CMT-MUSIC AWARDS, THE TODAY SHOW on NBC (for which he received a 2011 Daytime Emmy Award Nomination for Outstanding Production Design and Art Direction), FROM THE TOP on PBS, The 9/11 COMMEMORATIONS for the Mayor’s Office of New York City including the 10 -year Anniversary Opening of the 9-11 Memorial Grounds, VH-1 STORYTELLERS, and the FUSE FANGORIA CHAINSAW ARWARDS. Mr. Black has also worked repeatedly with BET, MTV, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, WNBC, CMT, FUSE, NUVO, THE WEATHER CHANNEL, SUNDANCE CHANNEL, & OXYGEN on varied specials and news broadcasts. As an event lighting and production designer he has produced events for The Park Avenue Armory, Walmart, U.S Foods, Starbucks, Men’s Journal, AOL Time Warner, AXE, Huggies, The American Museum of Natural History, Origins, as well as many private parties. Additionally close to Aaron’s heart was his involvement in helping thousands of struggling children learn to read with the nationally distributed educational FLETCHER’S PLACE TELEVISION SHOW where he also served as live action director.
In Architecture his designs have been observed by millions of people each year who have visited theme parks, wildlife parks, aquariums, toy stores, and museums in the United States and Europe. He has created the interior and exteriors for such projects as AKBAR’S ADVENTURE TOURS 4D SIMULATION RIDE featuring Martin Short and Eugene Levy for Busch Gardens Tampa, ALPENGEIST ROLLER COASTER for Busch Gardens Williamsburg, SHIPWRECK CAFÉ for Sea World San Diego, JOURNEY TO ATLANTIS for Sea World Orlando and other projects for Sesame Place, Sea World San Antonio and Water Country USA. He has created the design for the HARRY POTTER and MUPPET WHATNOT SHOP for FAO Schwartz’s flagship store on 5th Ave in New York City.
Mr. Black has received 5 Audelco Award Nominations for Outstanding Lighting Design; a Helen Hayes Design Award nomination, a Lucille Lorel Award for Outstanding Lighting Design, an IRNE Award Nomination for Best Lighting Design, a Daytime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Production Design and Art Direction, and an Art Director’s Guild Award nomination for Outstanding Production Design. He is a member of United Scenic Artists 829, the International Thespian Society and the Educational Theatre Association. He has been a guest instructor at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts Department of Design for Stage and Film, NYU’s School of Education, Fordham University, and the International Theatre Program at University of Rochester, where he is an Associate Artist in Residence. His work has been featured in numerous publications and editorials including the New York Times, Entertainment Design Magazine, Journal of Lighting Designers and Engineers Association of Japan, American Theatre Magazine, and numerous Roller Coaster / Amusement Park publications. His work has been featured in the 2011 Prague Quadrennial and USITT. Mr. Black holds a Certificate from the Pacific Conservatory for the Performing Arts in California, a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Conservatory for Performing Arts at Webster University in Saint Louis and a Master of Fine Arts from Tisch School of the Arts at New York University.
Mr. Black serves as a Senior Consultant for Theatre Projects Consultants, one of the world’s most successful theater consultant companies.