Stephen Pruitt has been working in the arts as a designer, writer, director and performer for over twenty years. After studying Aerospace Engineering at the University of Cincinnati, he switched directions by spending two years at Ensemble Theater of Cincinnati working under several well known directors and playwrights, including Lee Blessing, Edward Albee and Rebecca Miller. Shortly after, he began designing lighting and sets and became interested in dance, becoming the resident designer for Cincinnati’s Contemporary Dance Theater, where he worked with many nationally known Dance groups and choreographers including Parsons Dance, Urban Bush Women, Doug Varone, David Dorfman and many others. 

Since moving to Austin in 1997, Stephen has worked as a freelance Lighting, Scenic, and Production designer, collaborating with many of Austin’s most innovative theater and dance groups including Tapestry Dance Company, Kathy Dunn Hamrick Dance and Forklift Danceworks (as resident production designer for all three), Trouble Puppet Theater (resident lighting designer), and the Rude Mechs (company member) as well as Andrea Ariel Dance theatre, Salvage Vanguard Theater, Physical Plant Theater, and St Edwards University’s Mary Moody Northern Theater. His company, Fluxion Scenic and Light has produced and designed many seminal Austin events, including Austin Film Society’s Texas Film Hall of Fame Awards, the Mayor’s party at City Hall for First Night, and opening night parties for Cirque du Soleil’s first two Austin Premieres. In addition to his work in Austin, Stephen’s work tours and travels frequently, most recently touring with Tapestry Dance in China, the Rude Mechs in Washington DC, dance festivals in Vancouver, and as a technical consultant and designer for the revitalization of the historic Emery Theater, in Cincinnati, where the inaugural season included shows by Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys, The National, Bill Frisell, and Dean and Britta.

Stephen’s work has received many nominations and awards from Austin’s critics and arts community, and he is the only designer in Austin to be nominated for Critic’s Table and B. Iden Payne Awards in both the Scenic Design and Lighting Design categories. Most recently, in its end of the year Top Ten lists, the Austin Chronicle named shows that Stephen designed in nearly half (9 of 20) of its listings in the dance category, including shows from Forklift, Tapestry, and Kathy Hamrick Dance Companies, and he was named Outstanding Lighting Designer of 2014 by the Austin Critic's Table

In addition to his design for performing arts, Stephen works as a photographer, and is in the process of starting a new non-profit to create very long term public art projects.

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