Inventor Dave Cunningham Supports BTS with Major Donation

Behind the Scenes is thrilled to announce it has received a major donation of $50,000 from legendary inventor Dave Cunningham, who stated, “I’ve been aware of the great work that Behind the Scenes has been doing over the past few years for individuals in need in the entertainment industry. I’m pleased to be able to contribute to that work this year!”

Over the last 40 years, Dave Cunningham has been one of the most prolific and creative inventors and product developers in the entertainment lighting industry. His work has resulted in milestone products from many major manufacturers. These include the first dimmer-per-circuit system with the CD-80 from Strand Lighting, along with the paradigm-changing Light Palette control console, which would become a new standard for control syntax in performance lighting. It is not an exaggeration to say that his inventions have positively affected the work of an entire industry for many years, and they continue to do so.

Perhaps the most successful long-term Cunningham product collaborations happened with ETC, where he was the inventive force behind the Sensor dimming system and the Source 4 ellipsoidal spotlight—the most successful entertainment fixture in history, with almost 4 million units in use today. Cunningham has continued to develop exciting and technically challenging products such as the S4WRD color LED retrofit for the Source 4. 

David Lincecum, Vice President of Marketing at ETC, commented, “All of us at ETC are honored to have a long and prosperous relationship with Dave. He has made enormous contributions to the lighting tools used by the design and production community – and it’s appropriate that he now extends that contribution to include the direct needs of industry workers. Everyone at ETC applauds Dave’s contribution to BTS!”

Rick Rudolph, chair of the Behind the Scenes Board, added, “To those of us who grew up in the lighting industry, Dave Cunningham has been an iconic figure of vision and innovation providing products that have enhanced creativity and productivity for legions of designers, directors and workers. We are extraordinarily grateful to Dave for recognizing and supporting the work we are doing.”