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The moment the lights turned on

Ansley Maddox has discovered her passion running the light board for Blinn’s theatre department

April 8, 2016

Ansley MaddoxBlinn College sophomore Ansley Maddox can remember the moment a year ago when she was given a brief instruction on the lighting system inside the theatre.

From then on, she knew lighting would be a big part of her future.

“It has been amazing to learn and work with the new technology,” said Maddox, a Navasota High School graduate. “I have been in charge of the lighting for many of the performances and now I know I want to pursue a career in technical theatre and concert lighting.”

Maddox has worked the light board or assisted for each of the first three shows for the Performing Arts Series at the O’Donnell Center, and will once again be behind the controls for the final show in the series Sunday, when New York’s Gilbert & Sullivan Players present “The Pirates of Penzance” at 4 p.m.

General admission for the show is $30, and tickets are available at or by calling 979-830-4024.

“At the very beginning, it was a little hard to learn the lighting system,” Maddox said. “I am the kind of person who needs to work with things over and over to understand them, and eventually I got comfortable working the lights.”

Each of the four shows in the Performing Arts Series have tested Maddox’s skills and techniques. “Jim Whitter’s Christmas Memories” in December didn’t come with a prepared lighting request, while “Pirates of Penzance” will include an exact lighting plot that needs to be hung, colored, patched, and focused in advance.

“Ansley has really enjoyed working with each of the different shows,” said Kevin Patrick, technical theatre director.

“Lighting for a live, unrehearsed concert is very different from the theatrical lighting we normally do and Ansley has been able to handle it all.”

As a sophomore, Maddox is now teaching freshmen to run the lighting board for the upcoming year.

“Ansley is a born leader and teacher, especially when her peers show an interest in learning about lighting design,” Patrick said.

Maddox has been accepted to the Disney College Program in Florida. This marks the second consecutive year that Blinn theatre students have been accepted into the program.