A few weeks ago, I got the chance to do production photos for Theatre Aspen, our local professional theater company. I hadn’t attended one of their shows until last year, and it was amazing. I had no idea this quality of theater was going on right in downtown Aspen all summer.
Paige Price, the Executive Artistic Director of Theatre Aspen, hoped to use my skills to get a really strong image to use in promoting their run of CABARET, so I headed over to their rehearsal space one evening to photograph one of the main characters from the show, the Emcee.
The role is played by Jon Peterson, a Broadway veteran who has already starred in several productions of CABARET. As I started setting up for the shoot while Jon was being made up into the character, director Mark Martino worked with me on the lighting for the shoot.
The studio had a great window with natural light, so I was preparing to use that light source and shoot the portraits as I would most others. As we checked the lighting, Mark started to tell me more about the show. It’s set in a dark and seedy night club in Berlin circa 1929 or 1930, and the Emcee is the center of all things lascivious and generally naughty. This called for something different—no soft natural light for this shoot.
So, I switched the plan completely to capture a starker light more reflective of the show and the character. Jon was fantastic to work with, and we got some amazing images, which Theatre Aspen is now using extensively to market the show.
The shoot also made me really excited to see the show, which opened at the end of June. I got to see it on opening night, and I was truly impressed, both with what the production designers did with the space, and with the acting. The leads were exceptional, and the show was truly powerful. I am really excited to go back and see it again from a different part of the theatre.
Thanks to Paige Price, Mark Martino, and the incomparable Jon Peterson for making this shoot both possible and so successful.