Oliver Mears

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Oliver Mears is a theatrical director from England.


Mears read English and History at Lincoln College, Oxford,[1] where he was awarded a Double First Class Honours Degree in English and History. He began assisting the playwright and director Howard Barker while still at university, before becoming a Trainee Assistant Director at the King's Head Theatre, London.

Second Movement[edit]

Mears founded Second Movement as joint Artistic Director with the conductor Nicholas Chalmers.[2] His productions for them included the UK stage premiere of Benjamin Fleischmann's opera Rothschild's Violin, Mozart and Salieri, Trouble in Tahiti, A Hand of Bridge and The Knife's Tears.[1] The latter production toured to Prague and Brno in the Czech Republic in October 2010.

Northern Ireland Opera[edit]

In 2010 Mears was appointed as the Artistic Director of the newly created Northern Ireland Opera.[3] His productions for them have included The Medium, Tosca, which won the Irish Times Theatre Award for Best Opera in 2012, L'Elisir D'Amore, The Flying Dutchman [4](Nominated for Achievement in Opera Award, Theatre Awards UK 2013), Macbeth,[5] Salome [6] and The Turn of the Screw.[3] In August 2014 his production of The Turn of the Screw premiered at Novaya Opera Theatre, Moscow.

His production of Benjamin Britten's Noye's Fludde for Northern Ireland Opera was performed at the Beijing Music Festival in October 2012, the Chinese premiere of the piece.[7][8]

He has also directed productions for the Young Vic, Aldeburgh Music,[9] Early Opera Company, Opera North,[10] Nederlandse Reisopera Holland, Pimlico Opera, Nevill Holt Opera [11] and Scottish Opera, and directed Don Giovanni at Bergen National Opera in spring 2015.

In 2012, Mears was nominated for an Achievement in Opera award at the Theatre Awards UK, and in 2013, in the Best Newcomer category at the International Opera Awards.

Royal Opera[edit]

On 12 September 2016 Mears was announced as the new Director of Opera at The Royal Opera, succeeding Kaspar Holten who left the post on 11 March 2017.


  1. ^ a b "Loesje Sanders Ltd". 
  2. ^ "Second Movement website". 
  3. ^ a b "NI Opera website". 
  4. ^ Allison, John (27 February 2013). "The Flying Dutchman, NI Opera, Belfast, review". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 4 August 2015. 
  5. ^ Blain, Terry (27 February 2014). "The Golden Age of Northern Irish Opera Continues". Culture Northern Ireland. Retrieved 4 August 2015. 
  6. ^ Ashley, Tim (8 February 2015). "A white knuckle ride that never lets up". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 July 2015. 
  7. ^ "KT Wong Foundation website". .
  8. ^ Danlin, Liao (18 October 2012). "'Noye's Fludde' sails into Beijing". Global Times. Retrieved 30 July 2014. 
  9. ^ White, Michael (24 October 2011). "Revealed in Aldeburgh: Albert Herring's secret sex-life when the show is over". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 4 August 2015. 
  10. ^ Higgins, Charlotte (8 February 2015). "A tale of two Hansel and Gretels". The Guardian. Retrieved 4 August 2015. 
  11. ^ Dunnet, Roderic (2 July 2013). "The Magic Flute". Behind the Arras. Retrieved 4 August 2015.