Costume design for Dorabella in Enigma Variations by Julia Trevelyan Oman

Theatre Collection


Julia Trevelyan Oman was one of the most celebrated theatre, opera and ballet designers of the latter half of the twentieth century. In 2004 Sir Roy Strong donated her extensive archive to the Theatre Collection. It comprises over 20 000 items, providing a deep insight into her life’s work.

Oman was first inspired to create the ballet Enigma Variations whilst a design student at the Royal College of Art in 1954. She made a series of costume and set designs and delivered them to Frederick Ashton, choreographer at The Royal Ballet. Thirteen years later Ashton contacted Oman, finally wanting to realise her idea. Oman created new designs including this one for the costume of Dorabella. The ballet was a great success and remains in the repertoire of Birmingham Royal Ballet to this day.

  • Item reference: JTO/011/035/12
  • Copyright: University of Bristol
  • This image is licensed for some educational use only. Users must abide by these terms and conditions.