Scenic/Environment & Costume Design
After spending 18+ years working in a factory in Milwaukee, Wisconsin Deb O headed off to college for an undergraduate degree at Marquette University. She ended up majoring in Theater with a double minor in Studio Art and Art History. She continued on to received an MFA in Scenography at UNCG and immediately after went to the Yale School of Drama for an MFA in Design. Upon finishing school she moved to New York to pursue her dream of working in the theater, since that time she has not stopped designing sets, costumes and yes occasionally lights. She works on new plays, new musicals as well as the classics. She has also been working on site specific theater for just as long.
Deb O has devised and created large-scale, environmental designs for day-long performances of each of Chekhov's great works with director Brian Mertes and The Lake Lucille Project. With playwright/producer Beau Willimon and directors Brian Mertes and Alex Harvey, the project moved to a giant warehouse in Sunset Park, Brooklyn for an epic environmental staging of Lanford Wilson's Balm In Gilead. In the summer of 2014 the Lake Lucille Project embarked on the making of a feature film I Am a Seagull, in which Deb O served as production designer. In the summer of 2018, she will be creating the environment for The Cherry Orchard.
Deb O is a founding member and co-director of Artbarn, a bi-coastal collective of innovative interdisciplinary artists from around the country who gather for an annual residency to collaboratively generate original site-specific work. The first three new works; Home Stretch, This is a Ghost House, and The Circle were all produced in various turn of the century buildings on the Byrdcliff estate near Woodstock, NY. In 2016 Artbarn collaborated with Satori Group in Seattle, Washington at the Georgetown Steam Plant to produce a new works called We Remain Prepared.
Deb O is a member of the Wingspace design collective. She teaches design at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts Playwrights Horizons Theater School. She has also taught classes and workshops for the University of Puget Sound, the Brown University/Trinity Rep MFA Program in Directing, Marquette University, Fairmont University, Meredith College and the Met. She spoke at USITT about site-specific theater. Deb O is a recipient of Yale's Jay and Rhonda Keene Award, has been featured twice at the Prague Quadrennial, and has received numerous American College Theater Festival Awards including Best Designer of the Year. In 2013 her site-specific piece Enemy of the People at an abandon grain factory was chosen as one of the 10 best theater productions in New York and in 2014 she was nominated for Henry Hewes Award for Costumes on Ubu Sings Ubu. She is also a member of the Union Scenic Artist Union Local 829.
projects coming soon!