Neilson Vignola has carved out an impressive career as a stage and production manager as well as an assistant stage director in theatre, opera and circus arts. He graduated from the National Theatre School of Canada in 1980 and began his professional career working in various capacities at many leading Quebec theatre companies, including the Théâtre du Nouveau Monde and the Compagnie Jean Duceppe.
As the trusted collaborator of Robert Lepage, he assisted the stage director on several operas including The Damnation of Faust, (Japan 1999, Paris 2001, New York 2008 and 2009 and Quebec City 2012). This was followed by a production of 1984 (London 2005), The Rake’s Progress, (Brussels and Lyon 2007) and Wagner’s The Ring Cycle (New York 2010, 2011 and 2012). Throughout his career, Neilson has also worked on festivals, musicals, dance productions and tours. Between 1987 and 1997, La La La Human Step, Quebec singer Diane Dufresne, Le Théâtre Populaire du Québec, Le Festival International de Nouvelle Danse and other companies, engaged him as stage manager, production director, technical director or assistant stage director. Neilson joined Cirque du Soleil in 1998 first as technical director and then interim tour director of Saltimbanco. He later joined KÀ as director Robert Lepage’s assistant and production stage manager, and in 2005 he filled the same positions on DELIRIUM with Michel Lemieux and Victor Pilon – which led to appointments as director of creation on ZAIA in 2007, followed by TOTEM and now TORUK – The First Flight.