LD Collin Craig with Smokey Robinson

by Debi Moen • in
  • October 2018
  • On the Road
• Created: October 13, 2018

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Collin Craig

DESIGN APPROACH: “I keep it simple. Smokey likes the old school look of the tried-and-tested Par can. I spec a Par can rig with a handful of CMY spot fixtures primarily for color effects and texture. Smokey prefers not to see a lot of movement, so I stick with fixed positions and use spots to accent the Pars.”
HOME BASE: Minneapolis, MN


WITH SMOKEY: Four years.

CAREER SPARK: “With both my father (who toured with Alice Cooper in the 1980’s) and uncle being industry veterans, I saw a lot of cool things that attracted me to the business. At 13, I was lucky to work for a local production company cleaning Par cans and loading trucks during summers and I soaked up as much knowledge as I could. After a few years, I became a lighting tech on a show. The rest is history.”

WHY LIGHTING? “I always enjoyed seeing a concert and how the lights were so well programmed to work with the music. There was also a level of creativity that didn’t exist in the audio world. I always heard from the old school lighting guys that ‘people don’t come to hear a show, they come to see a show.’ That was a cool and accurate way to think about what we do.”

HEROES/MENTORS: “One of my biggest influences in lighting is Pat Brannon. Pat has helped guide me through all the obstacles in touring lighting — and also the bigger picture of how to be successful at it. He’s hands down one of the best; it’s always a privilege to work with him.”

OTHER ARTISTS YOU HAVE LIT: “Tons. I have operated for Judith Hill, Casadee Pope, Jewel and current up-and-coming country artist Caitlyn Smith.”

BEST ADVICE TO NEWBIES: “Put in time at a local production company or join your local IATSE. There are so many opportunities for education and growth by putting in extra effort. These days it is actually fairly easy to get a foot in the door.”

WHAT YOU LIKE ABOUT WHAT YOU DO: “Travel, of course! There is a bit of freedom that comes with this line of work and that is the driving force. I also enjoy seeing people leave a show with a smile. It makes the sacrifices worth it.”

Smokey Robinson likes classic old-school looks.

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