Theater Photography

Compelling images are frequently a factor that determines how prominently reviews of a production will be featured in the media, and I believe great images can play an important role in a play's success. I have a background in theater and have been photographing performing arts and theatrical productions for many years. For the past 4 years, I've provided marketing and production photography for the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE). This amazing program brings Chicago's best emerging and developing theater companies to the Storefront Theater, an incredible space in downtown Chicago. It also provides technical and marketing support so that theater companies can produce ambitious work that might not otherwise have a chance to be staged. I typically photograph productions in the days immediately before they open. I work closely with producers, directors, and the marketing team to understand the artistic intent of their production. Photographing live performances demands emotional engagement while at the same time being detached enough to make technically and compositionally proficient documentary images. I work very intuitively and must understand which moments will best convey a play's story to the audience and make images that will look great featured online and in print. I work to capture a play's most evocative moments in a way that will create audience interest in seeing the show.

Theater Photography
John W. Sisson, Jr.
Photographing theater requires an emotional connection with the characters in order to convey a play's most evocative moments
Polarity Ensemble Theatre: Peer Gynt
Polarity Ensemble Theatre: Peer Gynt
Silent Theatre: Carnival Nocturne
Silent Theatre: Carnival Nocturne
Silent Theatre: Carnival Nocturne
The Hypocrites: Cabaret
The Hypocrites: Cabaret
The Hypocrites: Cabaret
Caffeine Theatre: Under Milk Wood
Caffeine Theatre: Under Milk Wood
Rivendell Theatre Ensemble: Precious Little
Theater Oobleck: There Is a Happiness That Morning Is
Theater Oobleck: There Is a Happiness That Morning Is
Theater Oobleck: Strauss at Midnight
Theater Oobleck: Strauss at Midnight
Theater Oobleck: Strauss at Midnight
Wildclaw Theatre: Carmilla
Wildclaw Theatre: Carmilla
Wildclaw Theatre: Carmilla
Let Them Eat Cake by Holly Hughes
WNEP Theater: The (Edward) Hopper Project
WNEP Theater: The (Edward) Hopper Project
Infusion Theatre Company: Rhymes With Evil
Seanachai Theater: Scenes From The Big Picture
Seanachai Theater: Scenes From The Big Picture
Seanachai Theater: Scenes From The Big Picture
Theater Mir: Beautiful City
Theater Mir: Beautiful City
Vitalist Theatre: The Ghost is Here
Vitalist Theatre: The Ghost is Here
Chicago Shakespeare Theater: Funk It Up About Nothin'
Dog & Pony Theatre: Dead Letter Office
Oh What A Bloody Good Friday by Terry Boyle
Oh What A Bloody Good Friday by Terry Boyle
Arc Theatre: Merry Wives of Windsor
Arc Theatre: Merry Wives of Windsor
Caffeine Theatre and Chicago Opera Vanguard: Boojum! Nonsense, Truth, and Lewis Carroll
Caffeine Theatre and Chicago Opera Vanguard: Boojum! Nonsense, Truth, and Lewis Carroll
Factory Theater: 1985
New Leaf Theatre: Lighthousekeeping
New Leaf Theatre: Lighthousekeeping
Mortar Theatre: Corazón de Manzana
Mortar Theatre: Corazón de Manzana
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