Lighting & Production Design



”One gorgeous section is at first difficult to see. A very bright spotlight is focused directly at the audience and the room fills with smoke. In front of the light sits a bench with a woman lying on top and a man stretched out underneath. A beautiful love duet transpires in what I can only describe as a blinding silhouette. One’s eyes have to first adjust to the light and smoke, but once accomplished, the outline of two people traveling together to places unfamiliar begins to unfold. The visual “obstructions” become part of their hazardous journey.”
”[…] intense and beautiful lighting by Matthew Johns.” – Jeff Slayton, LA Dance Chronicle, 2019

”The lighting by REDCAT’s Lighting Director Matt Johns was stunning.” – Jeff Slayton, LA Dance Chronicle, 2019

Evoking Feelings Through Lighting - Interview on the podcast Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things by Keri Roberts.
"In episode 73 of Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things, I chat with Matthew Johns.  He was taught early on that the ability to network and follow through was what would make him successful in life.  As a lighting designer, he loves to blend the psychology with the technical to create a mood and a feeling for every event and performance.  Learn how he blends art, science, technology and professionalism to bring stories and events to life."

“Matthew Johns’ lighting design, combined with projection designs by Dmitri Kmelnitsky and Hsuan-Kuang Hsieh, and the intricate sound design by Tim Labor, all combine to produce both a rich mood and a vivid picture of the genetic information.” – Stage Raw, 2016

“Wilson Chin’s set is excellent, with big glass windows of the restaurant showing the endlessly falling snow outside. It works with beautiful help from lighting designer Matthew Johns[…]” – Regarding Arts, 2015

“[…] Matthew John’s lighting, sometimes moody, sometimes bright, is effective” – SJ Mercury News, 2015

“Remember how this play won Tonys for lighting and sound on Broadway. Cheers here for Matthew Johns’ lighting […]” – SJ Mercury News, 2014

Santa Clara University grads collaborating on a play in Silicon Valley Style – SJ Mercury News, 2013

UCLA REMAP – Einstein’s Dreams – UCLA, 2013


"Due to his understanding of multiple disciplines and technical expertise with software and lighting controls, his lighting design pushes the boundaries in the multimedia realm, creating environments that feel unique and fully explored. Having worked with him on a dozen different shows, I can say he is a great collaborator that I would gladly recommend." - Devin Bertsch, Scenic Designer and Architect

"Over the years I have had the opportunity to witness the depth of his passion for bringing the performing arts alive with his incredible lighting designs and the breadth of his skill and artistry." - Claire Calalo, Artistic Director of FCDC for change dance collective

"I've worked with Matt countless times and in many capacities over the past ten years. He's multi-talented and multi-skilled, and is particularly adept at collaborating on new works due to his well-rounded understanding of the performing arts. I trust him fully as a colleague, and value him as a loyal friend—because when things blow up, you need someone on your team who can laugh with you." - Chad Eschman, Artistic Director of Trap Street LA.

"Matt is an extraordinary lighting designer. He thinks about projects practically and creatively at the same time, which in my experience is rare to find. I appreciate his willingness and ability to work collaboratively and brainstorm ways to make an idea happen. His work ethic is unparalleled and he would be an asset to any organization or project." - Jessica de Leon, Executive Director of FCDC for change dance collective