Design is dramaturgy. Designers are storytellers who translate the words, music or movement of others into four dimensions.
Natalie Robin is the head of Theater Design & Technology in the Ira Brind School of Theater Arts at the University of the Arts and a lighting designer. She has been a faculty member or guest artist at Bard College, Muhlenberg College, Hofstra University, the University of New Haven, NYU/Tisch, Brooklyn College and the Lincoln Center Director’s Lab; as a visiting lecturer in Theater at Williams College; and as the visiting assistant professor of Performance Design and Technology at Alfred University. At the Prague Quadrennial, Natalie spoke on a panel entitled Pedagogy: Conversations about teaching of performance design: views, perspectives and evolutions. Since then, she has been leading workshops entitled Design is Dramaturgy: Approaching the Designer as Storyteller to help educators engage with design students.
Natalie’s design work focuses on new American plays and musicals, contemporary dance and site-specific performance. She believes that design is dramaturgy and is interested in how the generative text for work can be found in movement as much as in language. Her work expresses emotional narratives through light as an ephemeral and time-based medium.
Recent notable designs include Dionysus Was Such a Nice Man at the Wilma; Awake and Sing at Quintessence Theater Group; The Sorceress for the National Yiddish Theatre-Folksbiene; White at Danspace Project and The Monomyth at the Chocolate Factory, both choreographed by Michelle Boulé; The undergird choreographed by Meg Foley; and The Seagull on Ames Farm for Opera House Arts, Stonington, ME. Her most recent collaboration with choreographer Meg Foley, FIXING, premiered at the site-specific performance festival FORMATIONS at the 2019 Prague Quadrennial.
In addition to her design work, Natalie is the production manager of Applied Mechanics, the associate producer and a founding company member of Polybe + Seats and an associate artist of Target Margin Theater. Natalie received her BA from Columbia University, MFA from NYU Tisch School of the Arts, and is a member of USA 829.