Bradley King, a 2002 graduate of Gilman School, has made his Broadway debut as the lighting designer for a new musical, Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812, which is inspired by Tolstoy’s War and Peace.

The New York Times called the show “the most innovative and the best new musical to open on Broadway since Hamilton.” The Washington Post review said that “one of the evening’s notable heroes is the lighting designer, Bradley King, who here treats illumination not as a decorative accessory but as a pivotal narrative element.”

“Brad, a winner Gilman’s Class of ’02 Drama Prize, was a true theatre animal as a student, participating on stage, in the lighting booth and as an assistant director on many musical productions from that era,” said Gilman Upper School English teacher Jamie Spragins.

King’s work includes national and international lighting design for opera, dance and corporate media as well as theater. He received nominations for both the Henry Hewes Design Award and the Lucille Lortel Award for his work on Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812.

Classmate Matt Tulley, now an English teacher in Gilman’s Middle School, is not surprised at King’s success. “I fondly remember his portrayal of the older Joe Boyd in Damn Yankees our junior year. In addition, I admired his consistent grit in the classroom. You knew he would be successful in any endeavor, but I’m happy that he continued his artistic passion, which was a big part of his identity at Gilman,” said Tulley.

Cynthia Crenshaw is a freelance writer and editor.

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