PRESS & REVIEWS

 "Tony Cisek's scenic design has the frames and setting of a Steinway writ large, with rods shooting skyward at oblique angles, in layers that allow for actors to reveal and conceal themselves at will between the strings, with the aid of Max Doolittle's ingenious lighting." 

– Andrew White, Broadway World

“As Max Doolittle’s lighting ranges from the fragile luminescence of the elderly Salieri’s apartment to the golden luster of Emperor Joseph II’s court, those bars suggest the strings of a harp, piano, or violin, the stability of a musical staff, a gilded cage, the imprisonment of poverty, a descent to the oblivion of anonymity, or the ascent to the glory of immortality.” – Alexander Kafka, DC Theatre Scene

 

“A cage-like configuration is accentuated by the great swatches of dynamic light and shadow managed by lighting designer Max Doolittle. I would add that the vertical aspects could also be viewed as a reminder of Salieri's great and distant adversary, God.” – Pat Cuadros, BlogCritics

 

“The production overseen by director Richard Clifford earns that adjective, too [gorgeous]” – Peter Marks, The Washington Post

"...colorful lighting by Max Doolittle imparts a dreamlike vibe." – Celia Wren, The Washington Post

"The costumes and sets are equally effective, and lit in beautifully shifting hues by Max Doolittle." – Andre Hereford, Metro Weekly

"Lighting Designer Max Doolittle is the ace up [director Aaron] Posner’s sleeve, using color, light, and shadow to represent conflict, violence, loss, and resignation in an abstract manner that always draws attention to the actors’ often visceral performances – in particular, Arthur’s death scene." – Ian Thal, DC Metro Theatre Arts

"The show follows survivors coping with the 1889 Johnstown Flood, and it seems to open underwater, with furniture and debris suspended above set designer Andrew Cohen’s boardwalk strip stage, Max Doolittle’s lights piercing through mist..." – Nelson Pressley, The Washington Post

"Lighting Designer Max Doolittle illuminates a ceiling by Scenic Designer Andrew Cohen and Properties/Set Dressing Designer Patti Kalil where chairs, lamps, windows, and other oddments seem afloat atop rippling reflections. In this stagecraft tour de force, it is as if we the audience—seated on opposite sides of a wide rustic dock—are ourselves underwater." – John Stoltenberg, DC Metro Theatre Arts

"...the technical elements for Flood City consistently reach inspirational heights. Walking into the theater space of the Anacostia Playhouse is a thrilling moment. Thick fog and theatrical haze fills the air, creating a post-rain atmosphere that lingers throughout the entire production." – Sam Abney, Broadway World

"It’s an eye-catching criss-cross of fluorescent fixtures, photo-collage and negative space. Lighting designer Max Doolittle contributes well-timed blinks and flutters that play an important part in the show’s witty comedy." – Andre Hereford, Metro Weekly

"Lighting Designer Max Doolittle and Sound Designer James Bigsbee Garver wrap their design work tightly around each other’s elemental infusions creating perfectly synchronized moments of illumination and soundscape that often serve as mood indicators, mood enhancers, and ultimately as a tertiary level of characterization to Calderón’s script. During the melodramatic moments of the soap opera reenactment, Doolittle’s lighting is almost comical— playing with silhouette and shadow as well as interrupting crucial moments with exacting precision— while Garver’s underscored soundtrack heightens those absurd moments. Without spoiling the production, it can simply be said that in the back-end of the production their combined design efforts are pungently potent and strikingly evocative." – Amanda Gunther, Theatre Bloom

"Kiss is a special design challenge because of its sharp dichotomy in terms of tone and style. Lighting Designer Max Doolittle must go from evoking a sentimental melodrama to the modern Syrian hellscape, which he does quite effortlessly." – Michael Poandl, DC Metro Theatre Arts

"Speaking of stellar, so too are the artistic elements which enhance the urgency and grimness of Khemiri's play. Whether it is Max Doolittle's harsh, fluorescent lighting....we are immediately transported into the unsettled chaos that is Amor's mind." – Jennifer Perry, Broadway World

"Jarring and startling are the words that best describe the...approach of Lighting Designer Max Doolittle...Visually disarming and aurally alarming, Doolittle...paints the audience with a sense of discomfort, a sense of disquiet. This primes theatergoers for the highly exposed nature of the story that’s about to unfold: a car has exploded; the city is crippled with fear. In addition to these unsettling moments of audio-visual sensationalism, Doolittle is responsible for the cleverly crafted spotlight circles that focuses the performers into tight moments of isolation. The illuminating elements of the show become a masterful character of sorts, filling in the gaps in the skeletal framework of Director Michael Dove’s minimalist set design." – Amanda Gunther, Theatre Bloom

“Chun’s set, modern and surreal in atmosphere, was centered on a gigantic, nigh gaudy window and a staircase, both lit with tremendous sensitivity by Doolittle. Gunther’s costumes featured anachronistic bold prints that blended into the aesthetic of Chun’s set adeptly, contributing to the production’s overall surreal and otherworldly affect. Together, these elements would from time to time create immensely powerful and striking tableaux, one of the greatest strengths of the production.” – Matthew Samson, Opera Today

 

“Max Doolittle’s lighting design brought out the warmth in the “good” characters, and the twisted aspects of the Hubbards, and provided a lot of nuance in the shading of the window and the hallway of the set.” – Anna Mendham, Opera Today

 

“Lighting designer Max Doolittle’s ability to simulate an evening sky or a rainy afternoon through the center-stage “mega-window” is breathtaking.” – William Gonzales, Opera Today

 

“…but the redemptive final scene, lit perfectly by Max Doolittle, makes it all worth it.” – Emily Schweich, DC Metro Theatre Arts

 

“Although not explicit, there is a sense of the magical that hovers over Seiden’s production and gives it a bit of a fairy tale quality....The production looks pristine, more like an imagined New York City, than the one I lived in for over a decade.” – David Gerson, DC Metro Theatre Arts

 

“Lighting Designer Max Doolittle is able to keep in actors in full view even as they move around the entire theatre, but the most expertly lit scenes include the use of a dropped chandelier for Lilli Vanessi’s dressing room and the shadows cast during Too Darn Hot.” – Lauren Honeycutt, DC Metro Theatre Arts

 

“Collidescope is, however, beautifully designed and conceptually intriguing.” – Peter Marks, The Washington Post

"...the festive fruity notions of Miranda’s music is lit with gaiety and merriment by Lighting Designer Max Doolittle. A great deal of the show’s more pleasing atmospheric moments come from Doolittle’s projected color work." – Amanda Gunther, Theatre Bloom

"The fanciful old-fashioned blinking big bulbs that border the proscenium of the players' stage....speak of theatrical yesteryore with vim."

 – Amanda Gunther, Theatre Bloom

 

"...Max Doolittle created a beautiful sweeping lighting scheme that helped distinguish days and seasons within the monotonous repetition that defines these characters lives." – J. J. El-Far, Uptown Flavor

 

"Max Doolittle's lighting design is a gorgeous compliment to the outdoor setting, adding extra discomfort and otherworldliness when necessary." – Molly Marinik, Theatre Is Easy

 

"The environment is brilliantly rendered: Max Doolittle's inspired lighting (creating warmth and pallor simultaneously)..." – Barbara Adams, Ithaca Journal

 

"...plentiful space for light designer Max Doolittle to weave a counterpoint to Guettel's rich score, with enchanting shafts, criss-crossing patterns and a rich, dark palette." – Ross Haarstad, Tompkins Weekly

 

"It's a witty rendering of the plays conceit, smartly lit by Max Doolittle." – Ross Haarstad, Tompkins Weekly

 

"Max Doolittle's lighting shapes intimacy in an open space." – James MacKillop, Syracuse New Times

 

"...strikingly lit by Max Doolittle." – Barbara Adams, Ithaca Journal

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