New York Art Life Magazine is excited to introduce yet another groundbreaking artist. We are always excited when we enter the world of theater. It is one of the most enjoyable worlds in New York city’s art scene. This time around we will be introducing and interviewing a lighting designer that has had so many achievements and is continuing to embark on that journey. His name is Xiangfu Xiao. Xiangfu is a lighting designer based in New York City. You will be excited to hear about the projects he is working on right now and what he has achieved in the past.
NY Art Life: Thank you so much for visiting us today we can’t wait to start talking about your projects and hearing your perspective.
Xiangfu Xiao: Thank you for having me. It is my pleasure as well; I appreciate talking to people who understand the world of art.
NY Art Life: So, you are a lighting designer. That is definitely one of the most important aspects of theater, would you agree?
Xiangfu Xiao: I would agree that it is indeed one of the most important and significant elements of theater, but I also think that all of the elements of theater work together to present the play in the best way possible.
NY Art Life: That is a great way to put it. You have worked on so many great projects. Projects, what most lighting designers and artists wish to be working on. For instance, you’ve worked as a lighting designer for the play Measure to Measure which premiered at the Mark O’Donnell Theater here in New York City. That was such a great play, with incredible lighting design as well. What was your experience working on that show?
Xiangfu Xiao: Thanks for your kind words. It was definitely an experience that I know many artists hope to work on. I got to work with many talented individuals and watching the actors bring the story to life was incredible I would say that the experience was very personal for me as I got to present to the world how I respond to this narrative with the medium of lighting. I think that everyone has a narrative; the director, the writer, the actors, the set designers, the costume designer, and of course the lighting designer. And I think light is so important because without it we can’t see. And if we can’t see, how would we understand a play? It would just be dialogue. So, I am definitely grateful for that opportunity.
NY Art Life: Excellent. your work was so amazing in Measure to Measure that you were mentioned in different publications. For one, you’re credited for your work in an article on Broadway World. That is such a big deal. That show had such an impact that your name was also noted and your work was written about in detail in an article by The Theater Times. You’re an inspiration to so many people and you drive many artists and lighting designers to want to see the world and play in a different light, quite literally. Do you wish to work on more projects like this?
Xiangfu Xiao: Thank you so much. I would definitely love to work on a project similar to this one, but I am also very fond of working on different projects that make me want to create vast differences in the way I design light.
NY Art Life: Interesting. Would you say that about the projects you are working on now? I know that currently, you are an associate and assistant lighting designer on a very exciting play. You are working on a concert called The March to Liberation. It will premiere at the David Geffen Hall at Lincoln Center. Many people wish to see a play at this venue, let alone work on a project here and you were bringing your glorious lighting design to the stage here.
Xiangfu Xiao: Yes that is true, I’ve always wanted to work at Lincoln Center. I am very appreciative of this opportunity; I think my favorite thing about working here and on this play is watching the magnificent artists, writers, directors, cast, and crew create so much power and energy every day. It is impossible not to create good work when you’re surrounded by so many great forces.
NY Art Life: I really like the way you put that. And you were also the assistant lighting designer for Becomes a Woman. This one is an off-off-Broadway production. It will be on at NY City Center Stage II. Is it very different from the other project that you were doing at Lincoln Center?
Xiangfu Xiao: Yes definitely. You know a lot about my work. I think every story has its own narrative and direction of how things go and how writers want the audience to see the production, which definitely informs my work. The most significant thing is that the scale of work is very different between Broadway and off-Broadway shows. So definitely in Becomes a Woman, the show is much more intimate, and the lighting can feel personal.
NY Art Life: What more can you tell us about the life of a Lighting Designer for those who wish to rise in this career field like yourself?
Xiangfu Xiao: It’s a demanding career with so many rewards. I have always felt so passionate about my work because of the great energy that surrounds me. And there is so much to explore with every story. The work never feels like a routine or too technical, because I believe that with every story, there is a new world to step into and it feels like a dream to be able to work in this environment.
NY Art Life: That is incredible. Shall we end on this note?
Xiangfu Xiao: Yes!