Former Tahoe resident wins Emmy award |

Former Tahoe resident wins Emmy award

Robert Stern

Gregg Maltby, a former South Lake Tahoe resident and man behind the lights, was put on the spot Saturday when he won at the 53rd annual Emmy Awards as the lighting director for the HBO concert “Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band,” filmed at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

“We didn’t change anything compared to the live show,” Maltby said. “We normally change a lot of spotlight cues, but Bruce (Springsteen) didn’t care. He wanted it to look like a live show.”

When asked what it was like to win an Emmy, Maltby said: “Shocking, pretty much shocking, because I’m a road guy.”

Maltby, a South Shore resident from 1979 to ’99, has been touring as a lighting director for musicians such as Jimmy Buffet, Tina Tuner, Ringo Starr and Steely Dan since 1982.

Maltby has also done lighting for numerous movies (“Running Man,” “City of Angels”) and awards shows including the Academy and Emmy awards.

“I knew exactly what was going to happen, but I had never been in the audience, so it was pretty weird,” he said of the ceremony held in Pasadena, Calif.

Maltby got his education in television camera work at the Don Martin School of Communications in Hollywood, which he paid for with his G.I. bill after a stint in the Navy. He graduated in 1978 and worked as a freelance cameraman for ABC until the writers’ strike in 1979 when he moved to South Lake Tahoe.

For almost a year and a half, Maltby worked as a limousine driver and then a card dealer for Harvey’s Resort & Casino before landing a job working lights at the Sahara Tahoe, which is now the Horizon Resort Casino. Maltby said Gary Kehm at the Sahara gave him his break. “He’s the reason I won the Emmy awards – he is absolutely,” Maltby said.

Maltby got a six-week gig touring with Santana in 1982 and by 1983 was forced to quit the Sahara, because he had so much work on the road. He toured doing lights for 22 years and finally sold his home on Modesto Avenue in 1999 and moved to Las Vegas where he works as the production manager and lighting designer for the Aladdin Theater For The Performing Arts in Las Vegas. He is also touring with Huey Lewis and the News.

Jeff Ravitz, who also worked on the HBO Springsteen concert, won an Emmy for lighting design.

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