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Marketing strategy and design

The challenge

Please ensure that these elements are in your final research and designs:

  • Demonstrate your research, strategy and design process through sketchbooks, PowerPoint, CDs, DVDs or photographs.

Your research should show your personal – as well as artistic – response to the themes and context of the opera or ballet. This should include an exploration of the issues raised in the opera and how the production you are working on reflects them.

The strategy needs to include who your design is aimed at and how it will fit into a wider marketing campaign. Think about how you can deliver the full strategy even though you are only focusing on one piece; this could be through a breakdown of the other elements or some basic images of the companion pieces

  • Create a piece of marketing material to promote the production to young people (aged between 14-19 years old) who are visiting the Royal Opera House for the first time.

You could create one of the following:

  • A poster
  • An email
  • A leaflet
  • A social media campaign
  • A series of postcards
  • An app*

It is important that your final design fits into your marketing strategy and relates to your research about the art form, the Royal Opera House, and your target audience. It is important that we understand your thinking behind the decisions you have made.

*the app doesn’t need to be produced in full but printed slides of each page must be provided. It is important that we see your full design ideas even if the final product is not completely realized.

Director's Visions

The close collaboration and full understanding between a director and a designer is an essential part of every production and crucially important to the successful execution of the conceptual vision of the director.

The design can and should be very much another protagonist within the story, not remaining in the background as something merely aesthetic but enabling, enhancing and facilitating the narrative in its chosen structure. It provides the space in which the story unfolds, the distances and hiding places where the characters make their choices. Remember that visual aids help us understand psychological situations and changes; in which case the set is the most important visual aid we have. Everything on a stage should be there for a reason, to aid the story. Often, less can be more. Giving room to imagination is a gift to the audience and keeps them involved as the story unfolds.

Please download the Director's Visions for 2017/18 here. Choose one of the four Director’s Visions to focus your design ideas.

In your final design you will need to show concrete knowledge of the production and of opera or ballet as an art form, with a clear demonstration of how this knowledge informs your design ideas.

Research questions

The following list is a research guide:

What is the Royal Opera House?
How does the Royal Opera House currently use marketing to reach their key audiences?
What information does the Royal Opera House currently include on their marketing materials?
Who is the target audience for this opera/ballet and how will you plan to reach them?
What is the story and how is it split across the acts?
Who are the main characters?

Useful resources

Understanding your Client:

Royal Opera House website
FILM: What we do - the Royal Opera House
IMAGES: Royal Opera House Flickr page
SOCIAL MEDIA: Twitter - @RoyalOperaHouse
SOCIAL MEDIA: Facebook - /royaloperahouse
SOCIAL MEDIA: Instagram - /royaloperahouse
What branding guidelines does the Royal Opera House use?

 Submitting entries

Students will need to submit entries to their school or college first for internal judging. Teachers will then submit 1 entry for every 20 students as their finalist(s). Institutions should then send the following materials for each finalist to the Royal Opera House:

  • Three quality photos of the student’s completed design
  • College internal judging notes about the entry, including why they have been selected as a finalist
  • A 90 second video of the student pitching their design. They should use their sketchbooks to help demonstrate how they have responded to the brief and the Directors Vision.

Visit our Winners' page to see details of past winner's work.

Judging process

Visit our judging page to watch a short video filled with advice from past judges.

Design Challenge receives generous philanthropic support from the Paul Hamlyn Education Fund.