Lighting up the stage

You scarcely notice when it’s there. But when it’s not... Terry Miranda steps in to make the world a brighter place

By Vinita Bharadwaj Staff Reporter
00:00 March 15, 2005

You scarcely notice when it's there. But when it's not... Terry Miranda steps in to make the world a brighter place.

Terry Miranda's slick, combed-back ponytail does not really go with his crisp suit.

Then again, he's the managing director of a lighting design company and extremely keen on Pink Floyd, which might explain a lot.

His portfolio is on a DVD that starts off with his firm's logo, reminiscent of a Hollywood production company.

It includes all his work from fashion shows to high-profile weddings and the Holy Quran Awards in 2003.

Miranda's area of work is a bit difficult to grasp as it is best noticed when it is absent.

"That's the sign of a good lighting specialist," he says, pausing his DVD presentation.

"Unless the client asks for it, the lighting should complement the stage activities and not stand alone to make some sort of flamboyant statement."

Though his primary area of expertise is in lighting, Miranda's adolescent years were spent playing the drums and performing live with his brothers, which allowed him to understand the various aspects of producing a show.

"Performing really made me learn things from scratch. Right from the acoustics to set design," he says.

Miranda's entire knowledge-base was aquired purely by working long hours and he is proud to admit that he has had no formal training in his field. "On-hands training is the best for this sort of profession," he says as he talks of working on the very first time Bryan Adams showed in Dubai.

"It was basic compared to some of the gigs that come to Dubai now, but I was in my teens then and to be assisting on an international show gave me a lot of confidence."

Though the city has hosted many international concerts, Miranda is still unhappy with the final product as he believes the problem lies with event organisers.

"Unless it's a top international act, who generally bring down their own equipment, other acts are subjected to having their concerts or shows set up by equipment rental companies.

This task should be assigned to production companies and the market doesn't understand the difference," he says candidly.

"If U2 were to ever come down, their technical outline would have to be followed to perfection and the rental companies do not have the equipment to implement such a plan."

Miranda gets most of his ideas and inspirations from concerts and enjoys following every production aspect in the shows that he watches.

"I do have a large collection of live concerts that serve as a good source of inspiration and it helps to try and take an idea and tweak it to provide a local flavour," he says.

Recently, Miranda began the task of working on large-scale weddings.

"A wedding is always a fun exercise as the set, decoration, music and lights are all done to bring out the bride's personality and every bride is different," he says.

Still single, Miranda is content at designing weddings for the moment and stresses on the importance of lights.v "Lights can make the same set look different as they create a new ambience and mood," he says.

He will make his presence felt at next month's Bride Show, where his skills as a lighting specialist will be highlighted.