Marie-Jeanne Lecca

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Marie-Jeanne was born in Bucharest, where she studied at the Beaux Arts Institute. She now lives in London and works extensively in Opera. Marie-Jeanne received the Martinu Medal for Julietta and The Greek Passion and was nominated by Opernwelt magazine as Costume Designer of the Year for Maskerade. She was also part of the British team that won the Golden Triga at the 2003 Prague Quadriennale.

She has collaborated extensively with Sir David Pountney, designing costumes for Wagner's Ring Cycle (Lyric Opera, Chicago), Rusalka (Santa Fe), Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Oper Leipzig), Carmen (Bolshoi, Moscow), Les Vepres Siciliennes (Welsh National Opera and Opernhaus Bonn), La Forza del Destino (WNO), Mose in Egitto (WNO, Sao Carlos, Lisbon, Naples), Manon Lescaut and Francesca da Rimini (La Scala, Milan), Macbeth (San Fransisco and Opernhaus Zurich), Turandot (Salzburg Festival), Un Ballo in Maschera, War and Peace, Pelleas et Melisande, Khovanschina (Welsh National Opera), Masque of Might (Opera North 2023), Pierrot Lunaire and Seven Deadly Sins (Sets & Costumes), La Clemenza di Tito (Strasbourg), Lulu (Bolzano and Welsh National Opera), Haunted Manor (Polish National Opera), William Tell (Polish National Opera, Welsh National Opera and Geneva), The Magic Flute (Bregenz Festival - Costume & Puppet Designer), Un Ballo in Maschera, Die Frau ohne Schatten, La Juive, Agrippina, L'Etoile, Peter Grimes (Zurich), Prince Igor (Zurich and Hamburg), The Passenger (Bregenzer Festspiele / Warsaw / ENO / Lincoln Centre Festival / Houston / Chicago Lyric / New Israeli Opera), Maskerade (Bregenzer Festspiele, ROH), Les Troyens (Deutsche Oper Berlin), Krol Roger (Bregenzer Festspiele / Warsaw / Barcelona), Tristan und Isolde (Cologne), Moses und Aron, Katya Kabanova, Faust and The Adventures of Mr Broucek (Bayerische Staatsoper), The Excursions of Mr Broucek (Grange Park Opera), Julietta (Opera North / Ravenna Festival / Prague / Maastricht; Awarded: Martinû Foundation Medal, Nominee: Barclays Theatre Award, 1998), Die Soldaten (Ruhr Festival and Lincoln Center Festival), The Nose (Netherlands Opera) and Jenufa and Rienzi (Wiener Staatsoper and Bilbao).

Other directors Marie-Jeanne has worked with include Keith Warner for Ring Cycle and Wozzeck (Winner: Outstanding New Opera Production, Laurence Olivier Awards 2003; Royal Opera House), Wozzeck (Royal Danish Opera), The Turn of the Screw (La Monnaie), Carmen (Sets & Costumes; Minneapolis, Houston, Seattle and Turin), Cavalleria Rusticana and i Pagliacci (Berlin State Opera); Francesca Zambello for West Side Story (Bregenz Festival), Gillaume Tell and Salammbo (Opera National de Paris, Bastille), Therese Raquin (Sets & Costumes; Dallas Opera / San Diego Opera), Helmuth Lohner for The Magic Flute and Bocaccio (Volksoper Wien), Beate Vollack for Romeo et Juliette (Sets & Costumes; St Gallen) and Phyllida Lloyd for a staged Verdi Requiem (English National Opera).

Non-Operatic work includes Amahl and the Night Visitors for BBC Wales (BAFTA Nominated, Francesca Zambello); The Taming of the Shrew (Royal Shakespeare Company, Gale Edwards); As You Like It (Set & Costume Design, Nottingham Playhouse, David Pountney), La Bete Humaine (Sets & Costumes; Nottingham Playhouse, Pip Broughton); The Big One (Hat Trick Prods / Channel Four, John Henderson), Yvonna, Princess of Burgundy (The Mic Theatre Bucharest, Catalina Buzoianu, Winner: Best Scene Designer, Association of Romanian Artist’s Prize 1984), The Dragon (Festival of Youth Theatre, Victor Frunza, Winner: Best Design Award, Piatra-Neamt).

Masque of Might - Opera North

With Marie-Jeanne Lecca’s epoch-hopping costumes and Leslie Travers’s bric-a-brac sets adding to the eclectic mix, visual references assault you like a flurry of punches, sustained for more than two hours.

The Times (October 2023)

Only the highest praise will do for the designers – Leslie Travers (set), Marie-Jeanne Lecca (costume) and David Haneke (video) – working miracles with used materials. The backcloths were simply stunning, beginning with the planets in motion, then revealing Diktat in ever-more Putin-esque poses before the grandeur of Versailles opens up. And the designs play a great part in converting us – bleak scenes of destroyed woods.

So far, so amazing!

The Reviews Hub (October 2023)

Designs by Marie-Jeanne Lecca (costumes) and Leslie Travers (sets) conjure a lavish baroque-meets-brutal hodgepodge of recycled objects and textiles, embracing both the production’s genre-hopping sense of mischief and the Green Season’s sustainable principles.

The Guardian (October 2023)

The Excursions of Mr Broucek, Grange Park Opera

The director David Pountney has done more than most to unravel Janáček’s operatic genius for our time; here he sets himself the task of making the composer’s sole comedy both funny and culturally specific, turning the brutish and blotto Mr Brouček into a universal figure of fun, while grounding the tale firmly in Czech history and culture. He’s helped by Leslie Travers’s excellent toytown set, souvenirs of Prague clustered together and moving around under a broken plate as the roof, with Marie-Jeanne Lecca’s costumes adding zany notes of local reference under Tim Mitchell’s vivid lighting.

Daily Telegraph (June 2022)

Leslie Travers’ striking set is a pop art junkyard of Czech tourist tat, but even his giant lunar sausage (very Jeff Koons) is outdone by Marie-Jeanne Lecca’s riotous costumes. Moon-dwellers are zipped into shimmering latex while in 1420 Prague the Hussite elders are ingeniously presented as living statues, as if their plinths have just been wheeled off Charles Bridge.

The Times (June 2022)

Grange Park’s staging is slick and snazzy, its intricate gags seemingly timed to the millisecond. The design team has done it proud, with designer Leslie Travers, costume designer Marie-Jean Lecca and lighting designer Tim Mitchell clothing it in the colour and whimsy of Monty Python cartoons (minus the big pink foot). There’s a dancing delivery person with a string of Frankfurters and a brief starring role for a hoover; Act II’s towering dignitaries are wheeled about on piles of delivery crates and Brouček makes his moon journey on an outsize beer can with wings.

The Arts Desk (June 2022)

Scenes change rapidly, from lunar landscape to Hussite past (lively designs by Leslie Travers and Marie-Jeanne Lecca

The Guardian (June 2022)

15th March, 2024