Timothy O’Brien RDI, born1929 in India.
Educated at Cambridge University 1949-52, Yale School of Drama 1952-3. His career began in television at the BBC in 1954. From 1956-65, he was Head of Design of ABC Television. As an Associate Artist of the RSC from 1966, he has designed 31 productions for the company. He designed his first opera in 1958 for Sadler’s Wells and since for operas worldwide. In 1978, he designed Evita. At the PQ, he was joint winner of the Gold Medal for set design in 1976; and in 1991 joint winner of the Golden Triga.
From 1984-1991, he was Chairman of the SBTD and in 1991 he was appointed a Royal Designer for Industry, serving as Master of the Faculty of RDIs 1999-200. He is married to the designer Jenny Jones.
The variety of his work, and its evolution over 66 years, demonstrates a constant embrace of the theatre as a live, collaborative and ephemeral art form.
Teátro Nacional de Sao Carlos, Lisbon
By placing the orchestra immediately under the Royal Box, extending the stage well over it and restoring many of the lost stalls in a steep bank on the stage, Graham Vick and I placed the action of all four operas in the midst of the audience.
We presented the four-year transformation of this treasured late 18th Century Opera House over tea and biscuits to members of the Portuguese Government.