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José Álvaro Correia

Magazine Art + Culture | 19 Jul 2016

LIGHT AS A STORYTELLER

 

The main characteristics of the creations of lighting designer José Álvaro Correia lie in the interaction of light with stage movements, in its active presence, in the transmission of its emphatic energy and in its capacity for meaning, in an attempt, as he explains, “for light to tell the story unravelling on the stage, to become part of the set design”.
In the works of José Álvaro Correia, light is a sign in its dual structure of signifier and signified – the signifier isn’t, as in the case of the linguistic sign, an acoustic image corresponding to the recollection of a sequence of sounds, but rather a visual manifestation, which appears in colour, shapes and shadows; for its part, the signified of the lighting elements used by the lighting designer can be found in the power to alter the perception of the space of the objects on the stage. Light is communicational sign, with powerful significant and expressive potential, which, in addition to contributing to the reading of narratives, of the stage dynamics, suggests and proposes multiple interpretations – “The role of a good lighting designer is to pass on an idea, to suggest ideas and feelings, but ideas above all else.”
Having obtained a degree in Light and Sound at the Escola Superior de Música, Artes e Espectáculo [ESMAE], José Álvaro Correia recognises in the educational institution where he studied the ability to provide students with a freedom of experimentation, which allows them to undertake lighting design in an independent and creative manner. Technological matters, essential to lighting designers, were also a focus at ESMAE, making available robotics and lighting control consoles, ensuring students contact with the most advanced technological innovations.
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Text: Paula Monteiro

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