Riley Cavanaugh is a passionate lighting designer based in New York City. Currently, he is attending Pace University in Lower Manhattan, earning his BFA in lighting design.
His love of lighting began at the age of 7, after attending a Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert. He then began collecting small lights from novelty stores. This grew into buying professional dj lighting and staging light shows for his family, and this was all before he was even a teenager. At the age of 13, he saw Wicked on tour, his first broadway show. He not only immediately fell in love, but also realized how his love of lighting and theatre could combine to create fantastic worlds on the stage.
Throughout high school he designed for school musicals, and still continues to return to his alma mater to design their new musicals.
In addition to designing for theatre, he has worked at Six Flags New England in the shows and entertainment department, working in lighting, sound, special effects, and more. Through his years at Six Flags, he not only expanded his skill at running sound, but also became adept at running both lighting and sound simultaneously for everything from gameshows, to musicals, to magic shows, and more.
Since beginning his education at Pace, he has designed for many diverse and experimental plays and musicals, as well as programming for Pace's large and small productions alike. He has experience working in everything from a conference room or garage being used as a performance space, to Union off-broadway theaters, and even outdoors.
Riley also has experience designing for events and fashion shows, as well as working in film and in a corporate setting.
Awards include a Golden Carrot Award from Six Flags New England for excellence in technical theatre, and multiple awards for excellence and passion in technical theatre and lighting from Windsor Locks High School.