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Es Devlin OBE

Honorary Fellow
Person Type
Es  Devlin OBE


Honorary fellow

Es Devlin is one of the world's most sought-after set designers, with a career which spans the worlds of theatre, opera, pop and fashion, and includes collaborations with everyone from the Royal Ballet to Beyoncé.

After graduating from Bristol University with a BA in English, she completed the fine art foundation course at Central Saint Martins in 1995, before discovering a room full of like-minded thinkers at the Motley Theatre Design Course, which allowed her to combine her love of words, music and making things.

A year later she won the Linbury Prize for Stage Design and her first commission at the Octagon Theatre in Bolton. She honed her craft working for fringe theatres including the Bush and the Gate in London, before moving on to bigger venues such as the National Theatre, Sadler's Wells and the Royal Opera House. Along the way she picked up dozens of accolades, including three Oliviers and an OBE for Services to Set and Stage Design.

A phone call from Kanye West in 2005 proved to be the start of a new chapter, with Es moving into the world of huge stadium tours, collaborating with artists including Kanye, U2, Beyoncé and Adele.

High points of her career include Carmen on the lake stage in Bregenz and staging her first solo show, the Mirror Maze, where she created a labyrinth of sights, sounds and smells in a warehouse in Peckham.

When not working, she likes to unwind by playing with her two children at her home in south London, or going to see shows that she hasn't designed herself.