Ben Hughes is a lighting designer for theatre, dance and opera. He is Associate Artistic Director of The Danger Ensemble.
Ben’s lighting designs have appeared on stages throughout Australia, and internationally in the United Kingdom, United States, China, India & New Zealand. He has designed for companies including: Queensland Theatre, Sydney Theatre Company, Melbourne Theatre Company, State Theatre Company of South Australia, Malthouse Theatre, Opera Queensland, Belvoir, La Boite Theatre Company, Queensland Ballet, Sydney Festival, Brisbane Festival, Australasian Dance Collective, The Danger Ensemble, HotHouse Theatre, The Nest Ensemble, Zen Zen Zo Physical Theatre, JUTE Theatre, Stella Electrika, Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Phluxus2 Dance Collective, Collusion, Company2, Gold Coast Arts Centre, Woodford Folk Festival and Kooemba Jdarra.
He works with leading directors and choreographers including: Meryl Tankard, Lindy Hume, Sam Strong, Paige Rattray, Sarah Goodes, Todd MacDonald, Natalie Weir, Michael Gow, Wesley Enoch, David Berthold, Nils Christie, Daniel Evans, Isaac Drandic, Darren Yap, Gavin Webber, Lee Lewis, Francois Klaus, Amy Hollingsworth, Jack Lister, Alisdair Macindoe, Lucas Jervies and Stephanie Lake.
Recent highlights include: for Queensland Theatre, THE SUNSHINE CLUB, RETURN TO THE DIRT, BOY SWALLOWS UNIVERSE, TRIPLE X (with Sydney Theatre Company), MOUTHPIECE, ANTIGONE, L’APPARTEMENT, TWELFTH NIGHT, NOISES OFF! (with Melbourne Theatre Company), AN OCTOROON, SCENES FROM A MARRIAGE, SWITZERLAND, GOOD MUSLIM BOY (with Malthouse Theatre), BLACK DIGGERS (with Sydney Festival), MOTHER COURAGE AND HER CHILDREN, HAPPY DAYS, MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING; for Opera Queensland, DON GIOVANNI, MOZART AIRBORNE (with Expressions Dance Company and Natalie Weir), SNOW WHITE; for Sydney Theatre Company, BLACK IS THE NEW WHITE (and national tour), THE EFFECT (with Queensland Theatre); for La Boite, THE LAST FIVE YEARS, AWAY, NAKED AND SCREAMING, THE NEIGHBOURHOOD, FROM DARKNESS, THE MATHEMATICS OF LONGING, A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE, MEDEA; for Meryl Tankard, TWO FEET (Adelaide Festival); for Australasian Dance Company (Expressions Dance Company), THREE 2.0, FORGERY, AFTERMATH, THE DINNER PARTY (THE HOST), CONVERGE, PROPEL, CARMEN SWEET; for Queensland Ballet, PETER AND THE WOLF, THE MASTERS SERIES, FLOURISH, GISELLE.
Ben was Resident Lighting Designer at Queensland Theatre in 2013, and in 2014 and 2011 was an Affiliate Artist with the company. He is a member of the La Boite Artists’ Company for 2021 and 2022.
He co-directed and co-designed TROLLOP, winner of the Queensland Premier’s Drama Award, with Wesley Enoch and David Morton for Queensland Theatre.
Ben has received numerous Matilda Award nominations for Best Lighting Design including for BOY SWALLOWS UNIVERSE, L’APPARTEMENT, SWITZERLAND, GOOD MUSLIM BOY, THE CRUCIBLE, JOHN GABRIEL BORKMAN and MOTHER COURAGE AND HER CHILDREN and for Best Set Design for CALIGULA (co-design). He received Australian Production Design Guild Award nominations for MEDEA, TWELFTH NIGHT, and BOY SWALLOWS UNIVERSE.
Ben lectures in lighting design at Queensland University of Technology.