Oliver Messel

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Oliver Hilary Sambourne Messel (13 January 1904 – 13 July 1978) was an English artist and one of the foremost stage designers of the 20th century.

Messel was born in London, the second son of Lieutenant-Colonel Leonard Messel and Maud, the only daughter of Linley Sambourne, the eminent illustrator and contributor to Punch magazine. He was educated at Hawtreys, a boarding preparatory school in Kent, Eton — where his classmates included Harold Acton, and Brian Howard — and at the Slade School of Fine Art, University College.After completing his studies, he became a portrait painter and commissions for theatre work soon followed, beginning with his designing the masks for a London production of Serge Diaghilev's ballet Zephyr et Flore (1925). Subsequently, he created masks, costumes, and sets — many of which have been preserved by the Theatre Museum, London — for various works staged by C. B. Cochran's revues through the late 1920s and early 1930s. His work as a set designer was also featured in the US in such Broadway shows as The Country Wife (1936); The Lady's Not For Burning (1950); Romeo and Juliet (1951); House of Flowers (1954), for which he won the Tony Award; and Rashomon (1959), which was nominated for a Tony Award for his costume as well as his set design. He also designed the costumes for Romeo and Juliet; Rashomon; and Gigi (1973), the latter two receiving Tony Award nominations.For film his costume designs include The Private Life of Don Juan (1934);...... ...
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