Rouben Ter-Arutunian

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Rouben Ter-Arutunian
Born (1920-07-24)July 24, 1920
Tiflis, Georgia
Died October 17, 1992(1992-10-17) (aged 72)
New York City, New York, U.S.
Cause of death lymphoma
Occupation costume & scenic designer
Years active 1940–1980
Awards Tony Award for Best Costume Design, 1959

Rouben Ter-Arutunian (July 24, 1920 – October 17, 1992) was a costume and scenic designer for dance, opera, theater and television.[1]


Born in Tiflis, Georgia, he attended the Reimann Art School (Berlin) from 1939 to 1941, studied film music at the Hochschule fur Musik (Berlin) and took courses at the Friedrich-Wilhelm University (Berlin), 1941–43, and at the University of Vienna, 1943-44.

He first designed costumes for dancers of the Berlin Staatsoper in 1940, going on to design for the Dresden Opera and the Vienna State Opera. He moved to New York in 1951. In 1964 he designed the sets for the New York City Ballet production of The Nutcracker.[1] He worked with the New York City Opera company, Hamburg State Opera, La Scala in Milan, the Opera-Comique in Paris and the Spoleto Festival in Italy.

He designed either costumes or sets, sometimes both, for 24 Broadway productions. His first production on Broadway was Measure for Measure in 1957, and his last was Goodbye Fidel in 1980.

Awards and legacy[edit]

He won the 1959 Tony Award for Best Costume Design for the musical Redhead, and was nominated for the Tony Award three times for Scenic Design and one other Tony for Costume Design.

The Rouben Ter-Arutunian Design Portfolios and the Rouben Ter-Arutunian Papers are held by the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.[2]

Broadway work (selected)[edit]


  1. ^ a b Anderson, Jack. Rouben Ter-Arutunian, 72, Dies; Designed City Ballet 'Nutcracker'"The New York Times, October 19, 1992
  2. ^ New York Public Library listing, accessed July 3, 2009

External links[edit]