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This year starts a new chapter for Matthew Cotter, lighting director and media programmer for 15 years, as he embraces his new role based on the west coast as technical sales specialist for d3 Technologies.

Upon graduation from high school, Cotter joined the Technical Services Department at Disneyland, working with technical director Chuck Davis, who had been Cotter’s tech teacher in school. While still employed at Disney, Cotter worked for the Obie Company, learning to operate and fix lighting rigs, and also attended California State University, Long Beach, as a business major. Networking at Obie led to concert tours with Creed and Metallica before he decided to forgo the nomadic lifestyle.

Returning home to California, Cotter became one of the first people to use media servers at Disneyland, where he has since designed lighting for Disneyland’s 50th anniversary fireworks show, Remember…Dreams Come True, handled the video for World Of Color at Disney California Adventure Park, and produced video for Fantasmic! at Tokyo DisneySea. He also broke into live television, programming for Dancing With The Stars, for which he shared an Emmy Award for Outstanding Lighting Design/Lighting Direction For A Variety Series with his colleagues in 2014. He will continue to do freelance lighting design and programming as part of his E-Ticket Studios partnership with Jason Badger. Live Design caught up with Cotter at the start of the New Year to hear about what 2016 has in store for him.