Richard Jones (director)

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For the American film director, see F. Richard Jones.
Richard Jones
Born 7 June 1953
London, England
Occupation Theatre director

Richard Jones CBE (born 7 June 1953) is a British theatre and opera director. He was born in London, and studied at the University of Hull and University of London. After working as a jazz musician, he spent 1982-83 on a bursary working with Scottish Opera and the Citizens Theatre.

Professional career[edit]


Jones's earliest productions were for the Batignano Festival, Opera Northern Ireland and Opera 80, now English Touring Opera. He came to prominence in 1987 with the world première of Judith Weir's A Night at the Chinese Opera for Kent Opera and a production of Mignon at the Wexford Festival.[citation needed]

Opera productions include The Gambler, L’heure Espagnole and Gianni Schicchi, Der Ring des Nibelungen, Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden; Lohengrin (Munich), Skin Deep for Opera North, Copenhagen, and Bregenz); Falstaff, Macbeth, Jonathan Dove’s Flight and Euryanthe for the Glyndebourne Festival; Rusalka (Copenhagen); Billy Budd (Frankfurt); The Fiery Angel (Brussels); The Queen Of Spades and Olivier Award-winning Hansel and Gretelfor Welsh National Opera; Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci, The Bitter Tears of Petra von Kant, The Love for Three Oranges, Die Fledermaus, David Sawer’s opera From Morning to Midnight, Lulu and The Trojans for English National Opera; Pelleas and Melisande for Opera North and ENO; The Cunning Little Vixen, Der fliegende Holländer and Jenufa (Amsterdam); Julius Caesar (Opernwelt Production of the Year) and The Midsummer Marriage (Munich); L’enfant et les sortilèges and Der Zwerg and Juliette (Paris Opera); Un ballo in maschera and La boheme (Bregenz Festival); Wozzeck (Berlin and WNO).

The theatre[edit]

Theatre work includes The Government Inspector, Annie Get Your Gun, The Good Soul of Szechuan, Six Characters Looking For an Author and Hobson’s Choice (Young Vic); Rumpelstiltskin (Birmingham Contemporary Music); Too Clever by Half (Olivier Award), The Illusion (Evening Standard Award) and A Flea in Her Ear (Old Vic); Into the Woods (Olivier and Evening Standard Awards) in the West End, Black Snow (American Repertory Theatre); All’s Well That Ends Well (Public Theater, New York); Holy Mothers (Ambassadors/Royal Court Theatre); La Bête (West End, Broadway: Tony nomination); Titanic (the musical), Wrong Mountain (Broadway); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Royal Shakespeare Company); Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme and Tales from the Vienna Woods by Odon von Horvath in a new version by David Harrower for the National Theatre, London. [1]


Jones' productions of The Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk for the Royal Opera House and The Trojans (2004) for ENO won the Olivier Award for Best Opera production in 2005. In 2000, his production of Hansel and Gretel for WNO won the Olivier Award for best new Opera. 2000 saw an award as "Designer of the Year" with Antony McDonald for Un ballo in maschera in Germany. He was nominated for a South Bank Show award for his production of The Queen of Spades at WNO and for an Olivier Award for Pelleas and Melisande at ENO. He was awarded the Barclays/TMA Award 2001 for The Queen of Spades at WNO and again in 2006 for Wozzeck at WNO. He has also won the Evening Standard Award for Der Ring Des Nibelungen at the Royal Opera House.

Jones was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2015 New Year Honours for services to music.[2]

Recent years[edit]

In 2011, Jones directed David Harrower's Government Inspector (after Gogol's Revisor of 1836) at Warwick Arts Centre and London's Young Vic Theatre; the production featured Julian Barratt and Doon Mackichan. Additionally, there was Offenbach's Les contes d'Hoffmann for the Bavarian State Opera in Munich. This acclaimed[by whom?] production concentrated on the poet's state of mind, intensified by booze and pipe-smoking. All three loves occupied physically similar spaces, as if their tales existed only in Hoffmann's imagination. Rolando Villazón sang Hoffmann, having returned to top vocal form after difficulties, and Diana Damrau took the roles of Olympia, Antonia, Giulietta and, mutely, Stella. It was conducted by Constantinos Carydis, [3] and the production was also noteworthy for Angela Brower's traversal of the leading role of Nicklausse, Hoffmann's constant companion. English National Opera co-commissioned the staging, which received negative reviews along with the good.

In 2013, Jones directed the production of Benjamin Britten's opera Gloriana at The Royal Opera House in London; in addition, there was the American premiere of the opera Anna Nicole at New York City Opera in September. This was a revival of his original production at The Royal Opera House at Covent Garden.



  1. ^ Rose English (and audience member questioners), "Richard Jones on Tales from the Vienna Woods", 22 October 2003 at the Olivier Theatre on
  2. ^ 2015 New Year Honours List
  3. ^ Background information on Constantinos Carydis


  • Adam, Nicky (ed.) (1993), Who's Who in British Opera London: Scolar Press. ISBN 0-85967-894-6
  • Higgins, Charlotte, "Rise of the Demon King", The Guardian (London), 20 April 2002. (Profile of Jones)
  • Warrack, John, and Ewan West (1992). The Oxford Dictionary of Opera. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-869164-5. 

External links[edit]