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Daniel Flannery

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Daniel Flannery
Flannery with his Elements 'E' Show Cast
Born1952 (age 71–72)
OccupationArtist / Director / Producer
Flannery with his Illusions Cast
Flannery with his Xayron Cast

Daniel Flannery (born 1952) is an American artist, creative producer, theatre director, scenographer, film/television director, director of photography and lighting designer.


Stage spectacles[edit]

Illusion was a grand opera scale live production show in Changzhou, China. Flannery was commissioned in 2013 to create this show incorporating 3D stereoscopic scenography as a featured element of the show. The stage and house was wrapped with LED walls upon which 3D stereoscopic CGI completed the scenography. The audience wore active 3D glasses and the effect was true immersion. The production featured an international cast of 100 performers.

Flannery directed Xayron in 2010, which was filmed in Budapest.

Overseas Chinese Town Limited engaged Flannery in 2009 to create a western style production show. The show was "E" Elements Show. The production featured a variety of dancers, acrobats, synchronized swimmers, singers, musicians, magicians, and puppets. The show ran for five years at the Huaxia Art Centre in Shenzhen, China.

Flannery collaborated with Oscar Winner, Production Designer Eugenio Zanetti. Together they created Movistar Magica in 2005 which toured throughout Colombia. The tour kicked off with a live broadcast on network television from Bogotá, Colombia. The show was presented in parks and stadiums, featuring 500 performers on a stage that filled a football field.

Maryland celebrated the 350th anniversary of their statehood in 1985. The Department of Tourism for the City of Baltimore commissioned Flannery to collaborate with them to create a theatrical experience on Rash Field at the Inner Harbor for this celebration. Flannery and his team conceived and designed a food and beverage area that consisted of facades based on Maryland's early architecture. The main attraction was a 1200-seat theatre, inspired by tall ships, presenting an original stage production. The show was directed by Flannery and written by Cindy Flannery. The show featured actors portraying the ship's crew with historical paintings and photographs from the Peale Museum projected onto the sails and theatrical illusions.

3D stereoscopic dome films[edit]

Majid and the Secret of Life is a 3D stereoscopic film presented several times a day in the Dana Dome, a purpose-built theatre at Kahramaa Awareness Centre. Conceived and directed by Flannery the film explores the origins of water on our planet through a young boy's dream journey.

World Fairs and World Expos[edit]

For the Brisbane Australia World Expo 88, Flannery served as associate to Artistic Director John Truscott.

The 1984 Louisiana World Exposition presented an 'Aquacade' in the tradition of Billy Rose's Aquacade. Flannery designed the lighting for this 'Aquacade' attraction.

For the Osaka 1990 World Expo (the international Garden and Greenery Exposition), Flannery created Water Fantasium, the main attraction in the Dairinkai Pavilion. An original theatrical experience with a robotic conductor and an orchestra of water and scenography, it was voted by the Japanese media as the Fair's leading attraction.

In 1993, Flannery created Fantastic Odyssey for the Taejon, South Korea World Expo 93. After the Expo closed the attraction was relocated to a permanent location at Lotte World in Seoul.

Television and film[edit]

In 1978, Flannery relocated to Los Angeles, California and joined the ABC Television Network as Lighting Director. While at ABC he received his first Prime-time Emmy Nomination for his lighting direction of CBS's TV Special Goldie & Liza Together.

Flannery served as Director of Photography on the popular television series Roseanne. His innovative lighting design for the show revolutionized sitcoms and earned him the International Monitor Award, LDI Lighting Designer of the Year, and three Primetime Emmy Award nominations for Outstanding Lighting Direction.[1]

In the realm of feature films, Flannery was theatrical lighting designer on such films as Death Becomes Her, Forrest Gump, and Noises Off.

Year Title Role Genre Notes
2003 Road to Slamball Cinematographer Reality-TV
2002 Slamball Cinematographer TV series
1998 Reunited Cinematographer TV series 3 episodes
1988–1996 Roseanne Cinematographer and Lighting Designer TV series 196 episodes, 4 Emmy nominations, LDI Award, International Monitor Award
1994–1995 All-American Girl Cinematographer TV series 18 episodes
1994–1995 Me and the Boys Cinematographer TV series 8 episodes
1993–1994 Grace Under Fire Cinematographer TV series 18 episodes
1994 Forrest Gump Theatrical Lighting Consultant Feature Film
1994 Someone Like Me Cinematographer TV series
1993 Joe's Life Cinematographer TV series 11 episodes
1992–1993 Down the Shore Cinematographer TV series 25 episodes
1992–1993 Shaky Ground Cinematographer TV series 7 episodes
1991–1992 Davis Rules Cinematographer and Lighting Director TV series 25 episodes
1992 Death Becomes Her Theatrical Lighting Consultant Film
1992 Noises Off... Lighting Design Consultant Film
1992 Woops! Cinematographer and Lighting Designer TV series
1991 The Man in the Family Cinematographer TV series 7 episodes
1991 Baby Talk Cinematographer TV series 12 episodes
1990 Carol & Company Cinematographer TV series 4 episodes
1989 Chicken Soup Cinematographer TV series
1988 Poison Cinematographer TV series
1987 The Rescue of Pops Ghostly Lighting Designer Video game
1984 1984 Summer Olympics Ceremonies Special Effects Director -
1982 Yesteryear Cinematographer TV documentary
1980 Goldie and Liza Together Lighting Director TV special Emmy nominated
1980 Omnibus Cinematographer TV series 2 episodes
1980 Mr. and Mrs. Dracula Cinematographer TV series
1978–1980 Family Feud Lighting Director TV series 3 episodes
1977–1978 The Way It Was Lighting Director TV series 12 episodes
1971 The Ed Sullivan Show Lighting Trainee TV series 3 episodes

Themed entertainment[edit]

WED (now Walt Disney Imagineering) contracted Flannery as a scenographic and lighting design consultant for The American Adventure and Kitchen Kabaret at Epcot.[2]

For Universal Studios Hollywood, Flannery served as lighting designer, conceptualist and scenographer for Universal Studios on such attractions as E.T. Adventure, Kongfrontation, The Adventures of Conan: A Sword and Sorcery Spectacular, and Back to the Future: The Ride. For Universal Studios Florida, he was scenographer and/or lighting designer on E.T. Adventure, King Kong, and Jaws. Flannery was the principal architectural site lighting designer for Universal Studios Florida and Islands of Adventure.[2]

Cosmic Symphony was an attraction Flannery created for Geopolis at the Tokyo Dome.[2] The attraction ran from 1995 to 2007. In 1996, he was principal designer for Adventure Slots in the Hollywood Casino which won the THEA Award for Outstanding Achievement in Themed Entertainment.

Year Title Location Role Notes
2000 Dome Cinema Kangwon Land Producer
1999- Islands of Adventure Orlando, Florida Principal Architectural Site Lighting Designer
1998 Son et Lumiere Philadelphia Historic District Conceptualist
1997- Halloween Horror Nights Universal Studios Hollywood Conceived and Directed first original
1996 Adventure Slots Hollywood Casino Principal Designer THEA Award for Outstanding

Achievement in Themed Entertainment

1995–2007 Cosmic Symphony Tokyo Dome, Geopolis Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director
1993–2007 Back to the Future:The Ride Universal Studios Hollywood Conceptualist
1991–2003 E.T. Adventure Universal Studios Hollywood Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Lighting Designer
1990- E.T. Adventure Universal Studios Florida Scenographer and Lighting Designer
1990- Universal Studios Florida Orlando, Florida Principal Architectural Site Lighting Designer 1991 Night Beautiful Award for

Imaginative Nighttime Lighting Design

1990–2012 Jaws Universal Studios Florida Scenographer and Lighting Designer
1990–2002 King Kong Universal Studios Florida Scenographer and Lighting Designer
1987 Atlantis Singapore Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Creative Producer
1986–2008 Kongfrontation Universal Studios Hollywood Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Lighting Designer
1983–1993 The Adventures of Conan: A Sword and Sorcery Spectacular Universal Studios Hollywood Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Lighting Designer
1982- The American Adventure Epcot Scenographer and Lighting Design Consultant
1982–1984 Kitchen Kabaret Epcot Scenographer and Lighting Design Consultant
1985 Peppermint Park Singapore Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Creative Producer
1985 Ice Tunnel Universal Studios Hollywood Scenographer and Lighting Designer

Visual symphonies[edit]

In 1977 Flannery was commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic to create the original Star Wars Concert at the Hollywood Bowl. Flannery designed and directed the concert incorporating theatrical lighting, lasers, pyrotechnics and effects. The concert was a landmark event and Flannery began his journey of pioneering "Visual Symphonies", an entirely new concert genre.[3] Flannery collaborated for decades with Maestro Erich Kunzel. Their first endeavor was The Great Symphonic Visual Fantasy in 1978 with the Cleveland Orchestra at the Blossom Music Centre. Together they created Symphantasy – a visual symphony series that was presented annually at the Riverbend Music Center with the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.

Year Title Location Role Notes
1989 Symphantasy II[4] Riverbend Music Center Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the Cincinnati Pops and Erich Kunzel
1988 Symphantasy I[5] Riverbend Music Center Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the Cincinnati Pops and Erich Kunzel
1988 Great American Concert Hollywood Bowl Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the LA Philharmonic and Erich Kiunzel
1982 E.T. in Concert Hollywood Bowl Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the LA Philharmonic and John Williams
1978 Great Symphonic Visual Fantasy[6] Blossom Music Center Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the Cleveland Orchestra and Erich Kunzel
1978 Stellar Fantasy San Francisco Civic Center Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the San Jose Symphony and George Cleve
1977 Star Wars Concert Hollywood Bowl Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the LA Philharmonic and Zubin Mehta
Great Laser & Music Image Concert Hollywood Bowl Conceptualist, Scenographer, and Director with the LA Philharmonic and Michael Tilson Thomas
1988 Cincinnati Pops Carnegie Hall Guest Artist (Scenographer) with Erich Kunzel

Olympic ceremonies[edit]

The LAOOC contracted Flannery as a conceptualist working directly with David Wolper and Tommy Walker on the Closing Ceremonies of the Los Angeles 1984 Summer Olympics. Once the ceremonies were conceived the LAOOC contracted Flannery to direct and his firm to supervise the special effects and special lighting of the Closing Ceremonies.[2] This included designing the infamous spaceship and alien.

In Universal Studios' bid to produce the ceremonies for the Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games, Flannery served as conceptualist and artistic director.


Flannery was a photographer for Neil Diamond's live concert Love at the Greek, recorded at the Greek Theater in 1977.

Flannery was the lighting designer for The Sonny & Cher Concerts, their final years together 1977–1979. He continued to work with Cher as lighting designer on her Black Rose show in 1980.

Also in 1980, Flannery was the special effects consultant for Kenny Loggins' Keep the Fire concert at the Universal Amphitheatre.

Cincinnati Pops appeared at Carnegie Hall in 1988, with conductor Erick Kunzel and guest artist Flannery (Scenographer).

Flannery was lighting designer for the Hollywood Bowl Summer 1992 season.

Flannery directed In the House of Ethel, a 2007 Winter Solstice celebration at the World Financial Center's Winter Garden in New York City. The concert featured magicians Raja & Jarret and poet Harry Smith.


In 1979 the New Orleans police went on-strike and Mardi Gras was cancelled. City officials worked with State Marshalls which had jurisdiction over the Superdome and working with presenter Blaine Kern and Flannery as director and designer, staged Bacchus Mardi Gras in the Superdome. He returned to the Superdome in 1986 with his associate John Truscott to conceive the 1986 NFL Super Bowl XX Halftime Show.


In the early 1970s Flannery began his career as a lighting designer in New York City working on and off Broadway. Credits included Augusta and original plays presented by the Chelsea Theater Centre, Ice Age and The Family Parts 1–4. Flannery also freelanced with Jules Fisher & Assoc.

Victorian Arts Centre (Melbourne Arts Centre)[edit]

From 1980 to 1982 Flannery relocated to Australia to collaborate with two-time Oscar-winning production designer John Truscott as lighting design consultant for the design and building of the Victorian Arts Centre (now the Arts Centre Melbourne).[7]

Academic career[edit]

Flannery taught at the University of Southern California, University of California Los Angeles, Art Center College of Design, and State University of New York and the University of California Santa Barbara.


As an active member of numerous guilds, unions and trade organizations, Flannery maintains membership with the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, Producers Guild, Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, International Cinematographers Guild, International Entertainment Buyers Association and United States Institute of Theatre Technology. He served on the executive committee of the Motion Picture and Television Fund for the Golden Boot Awards from 2000 to 2007. He served as President of the Manhattan chapter of Muscular Dystrophy Association from 1972 to 1976.

Awards and nominations[edit]

1979–1980 Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction, Goldie and Liza Together, CBS

1989 International Monitor Award for Best Lighting Director, Entertainment Series, Roseanne "Nightmare on Elm Street", ABC

1989–1990 Primetime Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Achievement in Lighting Direction, Roseanne "Boo", ABC

1990 Lighting Dimensions International (LDI), Lighting Designer of the Year

1991 Night Beautiful Best of Show, Specialty Lighting, Universal Studios Florida, Imaginative Nighttime lighting Design

1992–1993 Primetime Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Lighting Direction, Roseanne, ABC

1993–1994 Primetime Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Individual Achievement in Lighting Direction, Roseanne "White Trash Christmas", ABC

1998 THEA Awards Gala, Award for Outstanding Achievement, Excellence on a Limited Budget, Adventure Slots, Hollywood Casino, Tunica Mississippi

Personal life[edit]

Flannery was raised on Long Island, New York. He has resided in New York City, Melbourne, Australia and Los Angeles.


Flannery was born to Joan and Bartholomew Flannery and has three siblings.

Flannery married Cindy Lawrence in 1980 and together have three children.

In 1992, Flannery married Sharon Takase and together have two children.


While attending a New York high school Flannery began interning with Lighting Director, William Greenfield, at CBS Television on The Ed Sullivan Show from 1968 to 1970.

Flannery is a graduate of the designers' program at Lester Polakov's Studio and Forum of Stage Design in New York City. He attended the Studio on a full scholarship. The school promoted the idea of conceptual-based designing. All the teachers in the school were working professionals and courses included scenic design, scene painting, still-life sketching, mask making, script analysis, costume design and lighting design.

In 1974, he continued his education at Columbia University in the Film Program. There he studied with filmmaker Scott Bartlett. He furthered his theatre studies at HB Studio with Herbert Berghof and Uta Hagen.


  1. ^ "The Emmys: Awards Search".
  2. ^ a b c d Archerd, Army (April 17, 2002). "Williams submerged in 'Aquaria'". Variety. Retrieved August 31, 2017.
  3. ^ "Star Wars Concert". Time. Vol. 110, no. 23. 5 December 1977.
  4. ^ "Calendar: Music/Dance". Cincinnati Magazine. July 1989. p. 29.
  5. ^ "Calendar: Music/Dance". Cincinnati Magazine. July 1988. p. 22.
  6. ^ Dobbs, Leon (June 23, 1979). "Orchestra's 'fantasy' slow starting". Akron Beacon Journal. p. 18.
  7. ^ Fairfax, Vicki (2002). A Place Across the River: They Aspired to Create the Victorian Arts Centre. Macmillan Art Publishing. p. 179. ISBN 1-876832-13-4.


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