Tracy Nunnally


Contact Details

Bronze Member


Professor Tracy Nunnally has worked in professional theatre since the 1980s.  His contributions include all aspects of theatre automation, motion control, rigging, pyrotechnics, special effects, scenery construction, and technical design.  His professional TD credits span the full spectrum of genres, continents, and spaces, and include the world tour and Broadway production of Medea.  Professor Nunnally is a full professor, the Technical Director, the head of the Design and Technology Area, and the head of the graduate theatre technology program at the Northern Illinois University School of Theatre and Dance.


Professor Nunnally is the owner, president, and system designer at VertigoTM, a performer flying effects and specialty rigging company.  Through Vertigo, Professor Nunnally provides flying effects for around three hundred productions per year, including numerous productions of Mary Poppins, Peter Pan, Beauty and the Beast, The Wizard of Oz, Aladdin, Little Mermaid, Tarzan, Billy Elliot, Seussical, and A Christmas Carol. His most notable professional credits include the Broadway tours of CamelotDr. DolittleTarzan, and 9 to 5, as well as the Broadway production of Curtains.  Professor Nunnally is the owner and CEO of Nuthouse Design and Production, which specializes in design and construction of trusses, portable roof assemblies, and custom structures.


He is an active member of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE), the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT), the Entertainment Services and Technology Association (ESTA), the Educational Theatre Association (EdTA), and a lifetime member of the Illinois Theatre Association (ITA).  He is also a voting member of the ANSI accredited ESTA Technical Standards Program’s Rigging Working Group, which is responsible for developing standards and recommended practices that facilitate the use of new and existing equipment and promote safe working conditions in the entertainment industry.  He was one of the first forty-five professional riggers to be certified by the ESTA Entertainment Technician Certification Program (ETCP) in both theatrical and arena rigging and is an ETCP Subject Matter Expert. He also is an ETCP Recognized Trainer, OSHA MEWP trainer, OSHA Forklift trainer, and an ETCP Recognized Employer.


In addition to his professional work, Professor Nunnally presents an annual series of master classes on performer rigging, known as the TOP Flight Academy.  He can also be seen leading sessions and master classes on a wide variety of topics at national and international conferences such as LDI, USITT, SETC, and URTA, as well as numerous EdTA festivals and events across the country.


Florida State University
1987 To 1989

LaGrange College
1986 To 1987

Job History

Cortland, IL, United States
January 2005 - present

Northern Illinois University
Professor / Technical Director / Head of Design & Technology
DeKalb, IL, United States
January 2000 - present

Nuthouse Design and Production
Owner / CEO
Cortland, IL, United States
September 2018 - present

Theatre Calgary
Technical Director
Calgary, BC, Canada
January 1991 - January 2000