Genesis Stage Designer: Ian Knight
by Regis Boff
Ian Knight died not so long ago.
I never miss people.
He was a British rock stage designer.
He showed up to design for Genesis around the same time that Peter began cutting a racing stripe in the middle of his head.
Ian combed all his hair to a point on his forehead, wore a cape, and dressed in black. He was about five feet tall.
He built the set for the band every afternoon for six years.
In Belgium, be thought it would be smart to make it in the hallway, where it was quieter only to find it would not go back through the doors. They did the show without it. Ian was not a forward thinker.
After Genesis, he went on to Led Zeppelin and Rod Stewart.
Between 1966 and 1971, he staged concerts at the Roundhouse for Jimmy Hendrix, Country Joe and the Fish, the Doors, Jefferson Airplane, the Rolling Stones, and Elton John.
Ian did the first installations of theater productions on cruise ships. In 1981, he worked on Ronald Reagan’s inaugural ball as US president.
Two decades later, I hired him to do my country shows.
Ian could be honest with artists. It was a flaw. I screamed at him more than once about this. Ian could take a punch.
He got into an argument with the Pointer Sisters’ manager over camera distances. Ian wanted the girls shot mostly at a wide-angle with few close-ups.
The manager charged to know why? Ian turned to the guy and said, “Because your fucking girls are ugly.”
He and I traveled to Japan and Thailand and had our lives altered.
Ian wanted to go further North into Cambodia.
I was afraid to come.
He eventually married a Thai woman named Ngeon Khprjunklang and had a son Alistair.
He had married two Thai women in all, but the first girl did not work out. They had a mushroom farm together in Cambodia, but her mother proved to be too annoying.
I still don’t miss him.