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Dr. Yaron Abulafia (PhD)

"Light is my tool to spark imagination with.

I am fascinated by light's capacity to stir emotion and impact on behaviour, to recall memories, and to influence how we feel toward our environment and everything in it. Beyond illumination, light is my ‘invisible actor’ who engineers cognition at will.

In my humble experience, any great multi-layered stage work depends on the close and sensitive artistic collaboration, on team work, right from the conception of the piece. Whether in small-scale projects with independent artists or in opera houses and national companies, it is the journey with colleague artists that I have interest in."

Award-winning performance designer Yaron Abulafia has designed over 200 performances, installations, concerts and TV shows internationally.

He designed in numerous large scale opera and theatre houses like: the Deutsche Oper and Komische Oper in Berlin, Sadler’s Wells and Royal Opera House – Covent Garden (London), Monaco Dance Forum, Grand Theatre Luxembourg, Poly Theatre Beijing and Shanghai International Dance Centre, National Operas of Poland, Czech Republic and Israel for: Staatsballett Berlin, Nederlands Dans Theater, English National Ballet, Shanghai Dance Theatre, Rambert Dance Company, Ballet BC in Vancouver and Compañía Nacioanl de Danza in Spain, to mention but a few.

Abulafia designed productions in: Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Cuba, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Monaco, The Netherlands, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, and the United States.

Dr. Abulafia holds a PhD, a Master’s degree in Scenography, and a B.A. in theatre studies (State University of Groningen, Frank Mohr Instituut, NL, and Tel Aviv University, respectively). He is the author of The Art of Light on Stage: Lighting in Contemporary Theatre (2016), published by Routledge with a foreword by Romeo Castellucci.

Abulafia serves as PQ Ambassador and Jury Member of The 2019 Prague Quadrennial for Performance Design and Space. In World Stage Design 2013 – organized by OISTAT organization once in 4 years - he was jury member as well as the keynote speaker. He is a visiting lecturer in high demand at universities and art academies around the world.

Abulafia received honours including: the First CEZ Prize for lighting design (supported by PHILIPS) for designing ‘Peer Gynt’ (Romania, 2008), a nomination for the Knight of Illumination 2011 (‘Awakening’, Rambert, UK) and the Theatre Lighting Design prize in Israel (‘In the Solitude of Cotton Fields’, Israel, 2011). In addition, he was awarded special Grants for Excellency by America-Israel Cultural Foundation, The Doron Foundation for Education & Welfare, and a full Ubbo Emmious PhD Scholarship for his research.