Jason Hand is a Toronto-based designer working in theater and opera. He has built a reputation for developing innovative lighting designs for site-specific productions with Against the Grain and Tapestry New Opera. His passion is creating the lighting for large-scale musicals and operas, and for new works.
Jason has lit productions at several of Canada’s largest opera companies including the Canadian Opera Company and Vancouver Opera (Carmen), Edmonton Opera (The Tales of Hoffmann). In 2014, made his American debut with Macbeth at the Minnesota Opera. He has worked with acclaimed directors Tim Albery (Imeneo, Dido and Aeneas, M’Dea Undone), Paul Curran (The Rape of Lucretia) and Tom Diamond (The Marriage of Figaro, Oksana G.).
His theater designs include productions for the Stratford Festival (The Merry Wives of Windsor, The Trespassers), Young People’s Theatre (Mary Poppins, Blue Planet, James and the Giant Peach, Jacob Two-Two and the Hooded Fang, Seussical), Tarragon Theatre (Hamlet, Enemy of the People, Peace River Country, The Summoned, Abyss, Sequence, The Ugly One), Canadian Stage (This, The Arsonists, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Winter’s Tale), and the Shaw Festival (Arms and the Man), as well as Theatre Calgary, Drayton Entertainment, and the Soulpepper Theatre Company.
In 2015, Jason was invited to become the resident lighting designer for Against the Grain Theatre, cementing a relationship with the company that extends from the company’s first fully-mounted production. For Joel Ivany and AtG, Jason has lit La Bohème, Turn of the Screw, Figaro’s Wedding, Pelléas et Mélisande, Death and Desire, #UncleJohn, AtG’s Messiah, A Little Too Cozy, Bound, and Kopernikus. He has also lit Ayre which has been remounted internationally.
Jason is a regular guest instructor the National Theatre School of Canada and Banff Centre for the Arts.
In 2011, Jason collaborated with director Joel Ivany and designer Camellia Koo to conceive a production of I Capuleti e i Montecchi that placed third in the biennial European Opera-Directing Prize. He has been nominated eight times for Dora Awards for Outstanding Lighting Design, and is a protégé recipient of the prestigious Siminovitch Prize in Theatre. He has won a Montreal English Theatre Award for his lighting of the NAC/Centaur co-production of The Adventures of a Black Girl in Search of God.
Jason holds a bachelor of fine arts from York University. After completing his studies, Jason continued his education by working as an assistant and associate designer on over 40 major productions with noted international designers such as Thomas Hase, Max Keller, Peter van Praet and Robert Carsen, Robert Thomson, Bonnie Beecher, Michael Whitfield, and Alan Brodie.
Upcoming projects include projects at the Charlottetown Festival, Tarragon Theatre, and a new production of The Louder We Get (formerly Prom Queen: The Musical) at Theatre Calgary.
Jason holds both American and Canadian citizenship, and makes his home in Toronto with his wife and his daughters.
Learn more at JasonHandLighting.com.