Theatre Lighting Design, Technical Direction and Consulting

Charles R. Kaiser
Aurora, Ontario CANADA

Hello! My name is Charles R. Kaiser and I am the owner of Godtar Consulting Services. In addition to my work on projects with Godtar, I work full-time for the Town of Newmarket, Ontario at the Newmarket Theatre. Although my official title is "theatre technician/assistant administrator", I really act as the de facto technical director in addition to being the lighting designer and resident sound guy. I hold an honors Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in theatre from Eastern New Mexico University in Portales, New Mexico and a Master of Fine Arts degree in Lighting Design and Technical Direction from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia. I have worked for the New Mexico Repertory Theatre, the Sarasota Opera, the Porthouse Theatre, the Santa Fe Opera, the Greater Miami Opera (now the Florida Grand Opera), the Arkansas Children's Theatre, and as a freelance designer and technician all over North America. I moved to Canada from the United States when I got married in 1993. I am a citizen of both the United States and Canada.

My job just previous to my tenure at the Newmarket Theatre was as production manager at the Ford Centre for the Performing Arts (now the Toronto Centre for the Arts) in Metropolitan Toronto. The Centre is a major performing arts venue with three theatres: a 1800-seat main hall, a 1032 seat recital hall, and a 200 seat studio theatre. When I left, I was in charge of the whole shootin' match.

I came to the Newmarket Theatre a little more than six years ago after spending almost six years in various capacities at the Ford Centre working for former theatre giant Livent Inc. While with Livent I worked on projects for various shows including Show Boat, Sunset Boulevard, Ragtime, and Fosse. Basically, I moved up the ladder from an assistant designer position to the position of production manager of the facility. In addition to duties for shows in the 1800 seat main hall, I also was busy overseeing the production aspects of all rentals and concert series events in the 1000 seat George Weston Recital Hall. The George Weston Recital Hall is generally accepted as being one of the most acoustically superb halls in North America. It regularly played host to such internationally acclaimed artists as Yo-Yo Ma, Itzhak Perlman, and Kathleen Battle. We also presented many artists requiring sound reinforcement such as Arlo Guthrie, Chick Corea, the Boys Choir of Harlem, and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra.

While I enjoyed many aspects of my job with Livent, as an administrator I felt very disconnected from the actual hands-on work that I used to do as a designer and technician. I credit the financial failure of Livent with changing my life. After spending nearly six years in the pressure cooker environment of the Ford Centre, I was ready for a change. All I needed was a push. Coincidentally, that push came in the form of the spectacular failure of Livent just nine days into what was to be an eight-week leave for medical reasons. As I was about to head out the door on my last day before my leave, my wife phoned regarding the position with the Newmarket Theatre. I interviewed for the job during a break in my medical treatment, was offered the job on Christmas Eve, and the rest, as they say, is history.

The Newmarket Theatre regularly plays host to nationally and internationally known stars. In the past season we have presented famed Canadian pianist John Arpin, well known Canadian children's entertainers Judy and David, former Men At Work front man Colin Hay, Canadian singer/song writer Jim Witter, the Irish Rovers, the internationally renowned Famous People Players, The Stampeders, Michael Burgess and Canadian east coast group the Barra MacNeils.

The following list contains position held, and employer information only.  For dates of service and supervisor's names etc., please contact Charles R. Kaiser via Email.

Technical Director/Resident Lighting Designer - Town of Newmarket
Newmarket Theatre - Newmarket, Ontario

Production Manager/Technical Director - Livent Canada Inc.
Ford Centre for the Performing Arts (Now the Toronto Centre for the Arts) - North York, Ontario

Associate Production Manager - Livent Canada Inc.
Ford Centre for the Performing Arts - North York, Ontario

Studio Theatre Technical Supervisor - Livent Canada Inc.
Ford Centre for the Performing Arts - North York, Ontario

Assistant Lighting Designer - Show Boat - Live Entertainment Canada
North York Performing Arts Centre (Later the Ford Centre for the Performing Arts) - North York, Ontario

Freelance Technician, Designer & Consultant
North America

Technical Director/Resident Lighting Designer - Arkansas Children's Theatre
Arkansas Arts Center - Little Rock, Arkansas

In-School Tour Lighting Designer/Technical Director - Greater Miami Opera (Now the Florida Grand Opera) Touring Dade and Broward Counties - Miami, Florida

Lighting Designer/Instructor - Buck's Rock Summer Theatre
New Milford, Connecticut

Electrician/Apprentice Lighting Designer - Santa Fe Opera
Santa Fe, New Mexico

Graduate Assistant in Technical Theatre - Theatre Arts University Theatre
Virginia Tech - Blacksburg, Virginia

Carpenter/Sound Editor - Porthouse Theatre Company
Porthouse Theatre - Blossom Music Center, Ohio

Lighting Designer/Tour Technical Director - Sarasota Children's Opera
Sarasota Opera House - Sarasota, Florida

Assistant Technical Director - Sarasota Opera
Sarasota Opera House - Sarasota, Florida

House Electrician (Albuquerque, Kimo Theatre) - New Mexico Repertory Theatre
Albuquerque, New Mexico

Warehouse Man/Driver - Brown Kaiser Company
Louisville, Kentucky

Residence Hall Assistant - Eastern New Mexico University
Portales, New Mexico

Photographer - Eastern Sun Press
Portales, New Mexico

Announcer - CIMN Radio AM 700
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

Theatre Instructor/Camp Counsellor - Brush Ranch Camp
Tererreo, New Mexico

Cast Member - Up With People (Viva La Gente) Cast B
1982-83 Tour of Mexico and Southern United States

Studio Camera Operator/Floor Director - KENW TV 3 (PBS)
Portales, New Mexico

Theatre Counsellor - Parks & Recreation Department City of Albuquerque
Albuquerque, New Mexico

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