Set & Costume Designer

Anna Orton

Selected credits

  • Messiah Bristol Old Vic
  • Escaped Alone/ ADULTSTraverse Theatre
  • Gunter Royal Court/ Edinburgh Fringe Festival
  • This Is Memorial DeviceLyceum Edinburgh/ UK Tour
  • KidnappedNational Theatre Scotland/ Scottish Tour
  • Oedipus Rex/ The Tsar Has His Photo Taken/ La Bohème Scottish Opera
  • The Effect English Theatre Frankfurt
  • Peter Pan and Wendy/ A Christmas CarolPitlochry Theatre Festival
  • Extraordinary Wall Of Silence Birmingham Hippodrome/Bristol Old Vic/HOME/Newbury Corn Exchange/In Good Company/Salisbury Playhouse/The North Wall


Anna Orton is a designer working across Opera, Theatre, Dance and Exhibition. Her previous work exhibiting, performing and curating as a visual artist in some of Scotland’s most pioneering spaces continues to influence her work in performance design.

Her recent designs for Opera include the multi-award-winning production of Handel’s Messiah directed by Tom Morris, which premiered at Bristol Old Vic and was followed by a national cinema and online streaming release. Other opera credits include The Tsar Has His Photo Taken and La Bohème (Scottish Opera), Paper & Tin (English Touring Opera) and Cendrillon (Buxton Opera Festival).

Other credits include Escaped Alone (Traverse Theatre/ Tron Theatre), ADULTS, starring Conleth Hill (Traverse Theatre/ Edinburgh Fringe), Kidnapped, created & directed by Isobel McArthur (National Theatre Scotland/ UK Tour), This Is Memorial Device (Royal Lyceum Edinburgh), King Lear and Robin Hood Legend of the Forgotten Forest (Bristol Old Vic) The Trojan Woman (Bristol Old Vic Studio), Peter Pan and Wendy and A Christmas Carol (Pitlochry Festival Theatre). She has designed for many prestigious companies including National Theatre of Scotland, Live Theatre Newcastle and the Watermill Theatre amongst others.

She was recipient of the OLD VIC 12 Designer Affiliation in 2019 and has an MA in Theatre Design from Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.

Featured work


National Theatre Scotland/ UK Tour
Created by Isobel McArthur
Music by Michael Jon McCarthy
Co-directed by Isobel McArthur/ Gareth Nicholls
Set and Costume Designer: Anna Orton
Lighting Designer: Ben Ormerod
Sound Designer: Clare Hibberd

‘Designer Anna Orton is on top form’
★★★★★ The Stage

‘as it (the set) switches from rocky outcrop to underwater landscape, is precise as well as witty’ 
★★★★ The Guardian

★★★★★ The Scotsman


Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh
Written by Kieran Hurley
Directed by Roxana Silbert
Set & Costume Design by Anna Orton
Lighting Design byColin Grenfell
Sound Design by Calum Paterson

‘Anna Orton’s set offers a perfect balance between seediness and absolute normality.’
★★★★  What’s On Stage

★★★★★ Broadway Baby
★★★★  The Times
★★★★  The Telegraph

Peter Pan and Wendy

Pitlochry Festival Theatre
Adapted by Janys Chambers
Directed by Ben Occhipinti
Designed by Anna Orton
Lighting Designer: Simon Wilkinson
Sound Designer: Matthew Tomlinson

This Is Memorial Device

Edinburgh Lyceum/ UK Tour
Adapted and directed by Graham Eatough, from the novel by David Keenan.
Set & Costume Designer Anna Orton
Sound Design Gavin Thomson
Video Designer Martin Clark
Lighting Designer Nigel Edwards

“evocative, atmospheric nostalgia”
★★★★ The Telegraph 

“memories of fictional indie heroes burn brightly” ★★★★ The Guardian

Opal Fruits

The Western Studio, Bristol Old Vic/ Pleasance Futures, Edinburgh Fringe Festival
Performer and Writer: Holly Beasley-Garrigan
Director: Maisie Newman
Costume & Set Designer: Anna Orton
Video & Lighting Designer: Rachel Sampley
Sound Designer: Ellie Holland

Handel's Messiah

Bristol Old Vic, Touring, iTunes and Cinema release
Director: Tom Morris
Costume: Emma Cains
Lighting: Rob Casey
Projection: Rod Maclachlan
Photography Jack Offord

★★★★★ Classical Source 
★★★★★ The Review Hub 
★★★★★ UK Theatre Web 
★★★★★ Stage Talk 
★★★★ The Times 
★★★★ The Stage 

La Bohème

Scottish Opera
Conductor: Stuart Stratford
Director: Roxana Haines
Lighting: Andrew Burnside
*Photography James Glossop

★★★★★ The Guardian 
★★★★★ The Scotsman 
★★★★★ The Times 
★★★★★ The Telegraph
‘(In the) immensely capable hands of designer Anna Orton, the opera’s impecunious Bohemians look like the denizens of Bruce Robinson’s iconic film Withnail and I, if it had been made for our virus-ravaged times’

Christmas Carol

Pitlochry Festival Theatre
Adapted Isobel McArthur
Director: Ben Occhipinti
Lighting: Rory Beaton

*Photography Douglas McBride

★★★★★ The Herald 
★★★★★ The Wee Review 
★★★★ Broadway World
★★★★ The Stage 
★★★★ The Scotsman 
‘ A fascinating streetwise design by Anna Orton, featuring a mix of period and contemporary costume, and powerful use of looming brutalist street lamps’

The Tsar Has His Photograph Taken

Scottish Opera
A new production by Roxana Haines
Libretto by Georg Kaiser
English translation by Leo Doulton
Conductor: Chris Gray
Director: Roxana Haines
Costume Designer: Anna Orton
Lighting Design: Stuart Jenkins
Audio Visual Designer: Tim Reid



The Effect

English Theatre Frankfurt
Writer: Lucy Prebble
Director: Audrey Sheffield
Lighting: Prema Mehta
Video: Ben Bull

Extraordinary Wall (Of Silence)

Birmingham Hippodrome, Bristol Old Vic, HOME, Newbury Corn Exchange, In Good Company, Salisbury Playhouse, The North Wall.
Director: George Man (Ad Infinitum)
Dramaturgy: Nir Paldi
Lighting: Jo Palmer
*Photography Alex Brenner

★★★★ The Guardian
★★★★ The Stage 
★★★★ A Younger Theatre 

‘Set designer Anna Orton’s concave arrangement of panels illustrates the confinement of the deaf by the insensitive system which defines them by ‘hearing loss’ ‘

For more information or to check availability

0207 2871441