Announcing the BGA Green Lighting Guide by James Bedell

This post comes to you from the Broadway Green Alliance

Announcing the BGA Green Lighting Guide

When it comes to theatrical lighting, the gear is changing at an incredible rate. It feels like just a few years ago it would be impossible to consider LEDs for anything more than special effects. Yet today, multiple manufacturers have created LED profile and wash fixtures that are capable of stunning stage washes, pin spotting, and even beautiful warm front light. The days of energy efficient fixtures not being able to do the job of stage lighting are drawing to a close.

When it comes to moving toward a sustainable future, it’s hard to imagine a community more supportive that theatrical professionals. Whether it’s the green captains of Broadway shows, or scenic designers putting in the extra effort to make sure their set is built from found materials, across our community out of both ethos and necessity, we are conserving resources every day.

One of the biggest lessons the BGA has learned from it’s partnership with the NRDC is the concept that there is no green, only greener than the day before. It’s in that spirit that the Broadway Green Alliance decided to launch the greener lighting guide. Which of course, begs the question:

What is the Greener Lighting Guide?

Essentially the guide is a database. The Broadway Green Alliance believes that the road to greener choices starts with better information. The truth is not everyone in a position to make spending decisions can walk the floor at LDI. When the grant money comes into a regional theater, or when the dean decides it’s time to spend money on the theater department, the Broadway Green Alliance believes it’s that point of purchase that can make a tremendous impact on what gear is used in these institutions for years to come.

A database in and of itself isn’t useful unless it’s organized in a way that makes sense. The Broadway Green Alliance’s goal with the design of the website was that it could work for both lighting people (lighting designers, master electricians and programmers) and non-lighting people, (artistic directors, company managers, technical directors) alike. So the instruments in the guide are organized by what type of light they produce.

When you click on one of the categories, you’ll find a typical or “standard” instrument, then a list of greener alternatives comes below. If that’s as far as you want to go, you can simply call your local dealer and ask to arrange a review of these instruments in your theater. If you want to know more, click on any listed instrument for detailed stats and links. All data is self-reported by the manufacturers, this is the fastest way to keep the database updated as manufacturers update their offerings. The Broadway Green Alliance couldn’t be more grateful to our launch partners, Chauvet, Robert Juliat, and GLP for helping us to populate the initial database. The Broadway Green Alliance will adding new data every week, and will be sure to announce updates on the BGA blog. In the meantime, the BGA hopes you’ll browse around and tell us what you think of the guide. The Broadway Green Alliance wants to make this guide as valuable as possible for the theater community.


The Broadway Green Alliance was founded in 2008 in collaboration with the Natural Resources Defense Council. The Broadway Green Alliance (BGA) is an ad hoc committee of The Broadway League and a fiscal program of Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids. Along with Julie’s Bicycle in the UK, the BGA is a founding member of the International Green Theatre Alliance. The BGA has reached tens of thousands of fans through Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other media.

At the BGA, we recognize that it is impossible to be 100% “green” while continuing activity and – as there is no litmus test for green activity – we ask instead that our members commit to being greener and doing better each day. As climate change does not result from one large negative action, but rather from the cumulative effect of billions of small actions, progress comes from millions of us doing a bit better each day. To become a member of the Broadway Green Alliance we ask only that you commit to becoming greener, that you name a point person to be our liaison, and that you will tell us about your green-er journey.

The BGA is co-chaired by Susan Sampliner, Company Manager of the Broadway company of WICKED, and Charlie Deull, Executive Vice President at Clark Transfer<. Rebekah Sale is the BGA’s full-time Coordinator.

Go to the Broadway Green Alliance

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