The Royal Opera House's New Degree
(Eloise Smith, stockroom assistant in the costume department at the Royal Opera House, photo by Ruairi Watson)
The Royal Opera House, home of The Royal Ballet, has launched a new university degree program in partnership with South Essex College and the University of the Arts in London. In order to address a dearth of costume makers in the performing arts industry, these three institutions will offer a joint degree that provides students with the opportunity to study costume construction.
The three-year program will teach students the skills they need to work everywhere from television to a ballet company. The courses concentrate on costume construction rather than design, in order to produce professionals who are highly skilled makers in their own right.
The ROH has a remarkable collection of costumes, historic costumes and wigs, which will be used as teaching objects for students. Congratulations to the ROH and its partners for addressing a major gap in the creation of theater magic. After all, behind every ballerina and her tutu there’s a dedicated costume designer, and ballet lovers everywhere are indebted to their hard work.
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