Photograph from The Maids - lighting design by Kelli Zezulka
Anna Rose James as Claire | Photographer: John Saunders | From the show The Maids
Photograph from You Forgot the Mince - lighting design by Kelli Zezulka
From the show You Forgot the Mince
Anna Rose James as Nell Gwyn and Gemma Sharp as Mrs Farley | Photographer: Jim Poyner | From the show Playhouse Creatures
Photograph from Medusa - lighting design by Kelli Zezulka
Elizabeth Harborne as Medusa | From the show Medusa
From the show Somebody's Son

Kelli Zezulka

PLEASE NOTE: I will be taking a lighting design sabbatical until at least November 2018 while I complete my PhD studies. 

Kelli received a BA in theatre from Mary Washington College in Fredericksburg, Virginia, USA. She then went on to train at LAMDA, where she specialised in lighting. Kelli has also completed an MA by research degree from University of Leeds, which concerned the history of lighting design at the Royal Court Theatre. She is in the third year of a PhD at University of Leeds, where she is examining how lighting designers use language to exercise agency in creative collaboration.

Three days after graduating from LAMDA, Kelli started at the Royal Court as lighting board operator and was promoted to lighting assistant twelve months later. She left the Court after three and a half years for a brief stint with the RSC, and is now based in Leeds where, until September 2010, she worked as a production electrician at West Yorkshire Playhouse. She now designs for small- and mid-scale theatre and opera, mostly in Yorkshire and Lancashire. Kelli is a dual UK/US citizen. 

Recent credits: Medusa (Proper Job Theatre), assistant lighting designer (LD: Matt Haskins) for Opera North fairytale season (The Snow Maiden, Hansel & Gretel and La Cenerentola); Cinderella (Northern Opera Group), You Forgot the Mince (Imagine if Theatre Company), Revenger's Tragedy (Wellfangled Theatre), The Maids (Hedgepig Theatre Company), Playhouse Creatures, Miss Julie, Playboy of the Western World (Hedgepig Theatre Company), Othello (York Shakespeare Project), Somebody's Son, Bag Lady (Hidden Gems Productions), 59 Minutes to Save Christmas (Slung Low), Amsterdam (currently on tour), which was nominated for Best Studio Production in the Manchester Theatre Awards.

Current credits

Show name Type Venue/Company Role Creative team Closes
Amsterdam Theatre Rural venues, then touring Lighting Designer Director: Juliet Ellis
Set designer: Giulia Scrimieri
19 Aug 2100

Previous productions

Show name Type Venue/Company Role Creative Team Opened
Medusa Theatre Square Chapel, Halifax, then touring
Proper Job Theatre
Lighting Designer Director: James Beale
Set designer: Laura Davies
Oct 2017
La Cenerentola Opera Leeds Grand Theatre
Opera North
Assistant Lighting Designer Lighting designer: Matthew Haskins
Director: Aletta Collins
Set designer: Giles Cadle
Feb 2017
Hansel and Gretel Opera Leeds Grand Theatre
Opera North
Assistant Lighting Designer Lighting designer: Matthew Haskins
Director: Edward Dick
Set designer: Giles Cadle
Feb 2017
The Snow Maiden Opera Leeds Grand Theatre
Opera North
Assistant Lighting Designer Lighting designer: Matthew Haskins
Director: John Fulljames
Set designer: Giles Cadle
Jan 2017
Cinderella Opera Duke Studios, Leeds
Northern Opera Group
Lighting Designer Director: David Ward
Dec 2016
You Forgot the Mince Theatre Civic Theatre, Barnsley, then touring
Imagine Theatre Company
Lighting Designer Director: Stephen Whitson
Set designer: Emma Williams
Oct 2016
Revenger's Tragedy Theatre University of York
Wellfangled Theatre
Lighting Designer Director: Mark France
Set designer: Simon Jarvis
Dec 2015
The Maids Theatre Rural Arts Courthouse, Thirsk, then touring
Hedgepig Theatre
Lighting Designer Director: Andy Curry
Jun 2015
59 Minutes to Save Christmas Theatre Z-Arts, Manchester
Slung Low
Lighting Designer Director: Alan Lane
Dec 2014
Bag Lady Theatre Hull Truck Theatre, then touring
Hidden Gems Productions
Lighting Designer Director: Amanda Huxtable
Oct 2014
Amsterdam Theatre Contact Theatre, Manchester, then touring
Afrique Performs
Lighting Designer Director: Juliet Ellis
Set designer: Giulia Scrimieri
Oct 2014
59 Minutes to Save Christmas Theatre Cast, Doncaster
Slung Low
Lighting Designer Dec 2013
Bag Lady Theatre Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield, then touring
Hidden Gems Productions
Lighting Designer Director: Amanda Huxtable
Oct 2013
Colour Music Environmental Leeds Carriageworks
Light Night Leeds
Lighting Designer Oct 2013
Playboy of the Western World Theatre Seven Arts, Leeds, then touring
Hedgepig Theatre
Lighting Designer Director: Andy Curry
Jul 2013
Miss Julie Theatre Leeds Carriageworks, then touring
Hedgepig Theatre Company
Lighting Designer Director: Andy Curry
Jan 2013
Othello Theatre York Theatre Royal Studio
York Shakespeare Project
Lighting Designer Director: Mark France
Set designer: Simon Jarvis
Oct 2012
Playhouse Creatures Theatre 41 Monkgate, York
Hedgepig Theatre Company
Lighting Designer Director: Andy Curry
Jul 2012
Somebody's Son Theatre Lawrence Batley Theatre, Huddersfield, then touring
Hidden Gems Productions
Lighting Designer Director: Amanda Huxtable
Set designer: Emma Williams
May 2012
The Leeds Music Hub Corporate & Industrial The Leeds Music Hub Lighting Designer May 2012
Narcissus and Echo Opera The Lowry, Salford, then touring Lighting Designer Director: Chris Hill
Set designer: Lucy Read
Oct 2011
Macbeth Theatre 41 Monkgate, York
Mooted Theatre Company
Lighting Designer Director: Mark France
Set designer: Simon Jarvis
Sep 2011
Mela Theatre West Yorkshire Playhouse Courtyard Theatre, then touring
West Yorkshire Playhouse
Lighting Designer Director: Alex Chisholm
Set designer: Barney George
Jul 2008
Money Makes You Happy Theatre Bridewell Theatre
Baseless Fabric
Lighting Designer Director: Joanna Turner
Jul 2007
Measure for Measure Theatre Bridewell Theatre
Baseless Fabric
Lighting Designer Director: Joanna Turner
Feb 2007
Macbeth Theatre Bridewell Theatre
Baseless Fabric
Lighting Designer Director: Joanna Turner
Jan 2007
The Memory of Water Theatre Hen and Chickens Theatre
Catlix
Lighting Designer Director: Britten Barry
Sep 2006
An Experiment with An Air Pump Theatre Royal Court Theatre, Jerwood Theatre Upstairs
John Lewis Amateur Dramatics
Lighting Designer Jul 2006
Touch Theatre White Bear Theatre
Baseless Fabric
Lighting Designer Director: Joanna Turner
Nov 2005
Rainbow Conversations Theatre White Bear Theatre
Baseless Fabric
Lighting Designer Director: Joanna Turner
Nov 2005
Saved or Destroyed Theatre Old Red Lion Theatre
The Kondoleon Project
Lighting Designer Director: Andrea Kantor
Jul 2005
Accrington Pals Theatre MacOwan Theatre
LAMDA
Lighting Designer Director: Fiona Buffini
Set designer: Richard Bullwinkle
Oct 2003
Handbag Theatre MacOwan Theatre
LAMDA
Lighting Designer Director: Gari Jones
Set designer: Richard Bullwinkle
Oct 2003
Translations Theatre MacOwan Theatre
LAMDA
Lighting Designer Director: Joseph Blatchley
Set designer: Richard Bullwinkle
Oct 2003
Deathtrap Theatre Heritage Theatre Company Lighting Designer Director: Karey Faulkner
Jul 2003
Fur and Other Dangers Theatre Source Theatre, Washington DC
Source Theatre Company
Lighting Designer Jul 2003

Medusa

Medusa has amazing presence for a small scale studio show. A clever set by Laura Davies makes great use of steel mesh and mirrored cubes and a steel mesh backdrop. Cold, dramatic lighting by Kelli Zezulka gives the whole production an almost operatic feel.
Jo Beggs, The Reviews Hub
Like its titular inspiration, Medusa manages to be both beautiful and ugly, Kelli Zezulka’s soft lighting at turns complemented and contrasted by Tim Cunningham’s beautiful music and Martyn Wilson’s oft harsh projections.
Ruth Jepson, The Reviews Hub
Staging and lighting are both impressive and add to the depth of the performance.
QuietManDave
Medusa is retold well, in a modern setting with hi-tech cues and visuals, in the first act by each character introducing themselves one by one. Laura Davies’ modern staging complements well with Kelli Zezulka’s lighting and Martyn Wilson’s projection.
Dawn Smallwood, The Reviews Hub

The Maids

Stepping into Hedgepig Theatre’s latest production of ‘The Maids’, you feel as though you’re entering a new and unfamiliar world. Strange sounds echo across the bare walls, shadows loom around us and two sisters explore the stage and play with guttural sniffs and animalistic movements. There is no room for relaxed pre-show conversation here, the audience sit still, immersed in an atmosphere so organic you can almost smell it, fearing they will interrupt the ceremony that fills the room.
Lily Luty, Nouse 06/06/2015
The audience enters the small dark and dimmed lighting auditorium where they are intimately greeted by two characters, the two sisters, who are at awkward ends with each other. The tension suggests this will be a dark play with anticipated twists and suspense. [...] The story is accompanied by Kelli Zezulka’s timely lighting[...], indicating that the story is deeper in intrigue and curiosity than it appears to the eye.
Dawn Smallwood, Public Reviews 31/05/2015
Lighting designer Kelli Zezulka’s removal of stage lighting with only four lights controlled by those onstage is a choice that also creates a darker, more sinister atmosphere for the audience.
Zoe Skipworth, Unknown Magazine 15/05/2015

Playhouse Creatures

Such incidental details add to the considerable clout of de Angelis’s superb script, brought to life by Curry’s astute direction, complemented by the soundscapes and original music of Alexander King and the lighting design (including candlelight) of Kelli Zezulka.
Charles Hutchinson, York Press 13/07/2012

Narcissus and Echo

The lighting by Kelli Zezulka creates an atmosphere that [is] only matched by the eeriness of the background score...
Christopher Faith, What's On Stage 06/10/2011

Macbeth

[the] two tableau scenes...have the harrowing quality of a Pieter Brueghel painting...
Charles Hutchinson, York Press 01/10/2011

Mela

Sikh philosopher Ranjit's moonlit riverside epiphany is especially beautifully rendered with the use of clear plastic and clever lighting.
Aisha Iqbal, City Lite, Yorkshire Evening Post 10/07/2008
...and Ranjit’s lakeside conversion is beautifully shown using torches and see-through plastic beneath a huge full moon.
Jeremy Kingston, The Times 04/07/2008
Theatre:
  • Regional (Main House)
  • Regional (Studio)
  • Fringe / Pub Theatre
Opera:
  • Large scale
  • Small scale
Architectural:
  • Commercial & Retail
Education:
  • Lectures
  • Workshops
  • Training
Contact method Details
Email address

kellizezulka@yahoo.com

Email address kelli.zezulka@ald.org.uk