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The Linbury Prize for Stage Design

Linbury Prize for Stage Design 2021 logo

The Linbury Prize for Stage Design

The Linbury Prize is world renowned in the visual performing arts. Since 1987 participants have gone on to successful careers in stage design on our national and international stages. The National Theatre is proud to support the the Linbury Prize and its commitment to future theatre-makers across the UK.

In a response to this unprecedented year we will be offering 12 bursaries to 12 brilliant young designers from the graduating classes 2020 and 2021. Each finalist will receive £4000 and a placement alongside an established designer to gain first hand experience of the production process.

This year submissions and judging will take place online as we are still adhering to Covid restrictions throughout the summer. Being online this year, we hope encourages graduates from all over the country to apply, without the burden of travel costs and physical portfolios. We hope that in a year that has been devastating for many that this support can provide some light at the end of the tunnel. 

For more information on this year's Prize and how to apply, please visit the Linbury Prize website

The Linbury Trust was established by Lord Sainsbury of Preston Candover KG and his wife Anya, Lady Sainsbury CBE, the former ballerina, Anya Linden. The first exhibition for emerging designers took place in 1987 at the Theatre Museum, arranged by Anya Sainsbury. Later, more conversations between Anya Sainsbury and friends in the theatre design world led to the idea of creating a biennial prize for young designers.

In 1989, having approached the then Director of the National Theatre, Richard Eyre, the first Linbury Biennial Prize for Stage Design was held at the NT. The enthusiastic endorsement of subsequent NT Directors Trevor Nunn, Nicholas Hytner and Rufus Norris, means that the Prize is still held here. This unique project continues to champion young designers today. Over the 30 years, more than 1,200 young designers have entered the Linbury Prize for Stage Design.

The Linbury Prize Committee consists of Anya Sainsbury, (Founder and Patron), Stuart Hobley, (Director of The Linbury Trust), Caro Newling (Chair), Jon Bausor, (Designer), Sean Crowley, (Designer), Sophie Jump, (Designer) Paul Handley, (Production and Technical Director), Katrina Lindsay, (Designer), Christopher Oram, (Designer), Tom Piper, (Designer) and David Pritchard, (Production Manager).