Camille Assaf is a Franco-American costume designer for opera, theater, dance and film. She is a lead design editor at Chance magazine, a photography magazine that looks at the world through the lens of theatrical design.
She has designed for many theaters and opera around the United States and abroad.
Recent opera collaborations include Fidelio, directed by Stephen Wadsworth, at the Santa Fe Opera. Other collaboration with Mr. Wadsworth include Cosi Fan Tutte (a Juilliard Opera/Metropolitan Opera Lindemann co-production), and Don Giovanni (Juilliard Opera), and the Beaumarchais Plays at the McCarter theater: The Barber of Seville and The marriage of Figaro.
In 2007, Camille created costumes for the world premiere of composer Robert Aldridge and librettist Herschel Garfein's American opera Elmer Gantry (Nashville Opera, Montclair State University). She also designed the Florentine Opera's revival of Elmer Gantry.
Other selected opera credits include international assignments mentioned below, and also designs for Britten's A Midsummer night's Dream and Wolf-Ferrari's Curious women, both directed by Patrick Diamond at Wolf Trap, and a touring production of Max and Moritz, which had its world premiere at the National Gallery in Washington DC.
In 2008, Camille was part of the small team of international designers to contribute to the Beijing Olympics Opening and closing Ceremonies, under costume director Eiko Ishioka and director Zhang Yimou.
In Phnom Penh, Cambodia, she designed costumes for the world premiere performances of Khmer rock opera Where Elephants Weep, by composer Him Sophy and librettist Catherine Filloux.
Other international work includes the touring production of director Alec Tok's Three Children at the Shanghai Performing Arts Academy and the Hong-Kong Fringe Club, a production for which she also designed the lighting. She also designed sets and costumes for the New York Opera Society's production of Don Giovanni, directed by Pat Diamond for the Théâtre Municipal de Castres, France, and costumes for the company's Falstaff, directed by Joachim Schamberger.
Her regional costume design credits include Red, directed by Lou Jacob at the Maltz Jupiter, and the Asolo Repertory theater, In this house, directed by May Adrales, at the Two River Theater, Pride and Prejudice, directed by Tim Douglas at Playmakers Rep; The Lieutenant of Inishmore, directed by Robert Moss, at Syracuse Stage; The Taming of the Shrew, directed by Alec Wild at the Great River Shakespeare festival; the premiere of Tim McCracken's play Composition, a production of Jeffrey Hatcher's Murderers, and Caryl Churchill's A Number, all directed by artistic director Steve Campo at Theaterworks, Hartford. Her designs were also seen in director Alec Wild's production of Richard II at Milwaukee Shakespeare, and director Evan Yionoulis' The King Stag at the Yale Repertory Theater. Her work for this production was nominated for a Connecticut Critic Circle award for best costume design.
Her work for young audiences was seen across America in the National tour of The Backyardigans Live!, directed by Lou Jacob (Broadway across America/ Nickelodeon).
Camille's extensive work in New York includes the Lucille Lortel nominated production of The Glass Cage at The Mint Theater, Catherine Filloux's Killing the Boss, at the Cherry Lane Studio Theater and Lemkin's House (78th st. Theater Lab, and Mc Ginn/Cazale) both directed by Jean Randich. Other New York credits include Rey Pamatmat's Thunder above, Deep below, directed by Pat Diamond, Dixie's Tupperware Party, directed by Alex Timbers at Ars Nova.
Her work was also seen at the Joyce Theater in three new ballets by Eliot Feld (Rumors, Backchat and Patootie), and in the New York City Ballet's reprise of Mr. Feld's Backchat.
Camille has worked with contemporary artist duo Brennan Gerard and Ryan Kelly (Gerard and Kelly) since 2004, designing costumes for Without -- presented in the "works and progress" series at the Guggenheim Museum, and then at Dance New Amsterdam --, Mass Particle #1 (Mass entertainement) at the Henry Street Settlement; It's my party, (Handel's Ode for the Birthday of Queen Anne), at the Greenwich Music Festival, Last Dance and most recently The Armory Show in the landmark rooms of the Park Avenue Armory. More recently, she styled their pieces Reusable Parts / Endless Love in Paris (Palais de Tokyo, Centre National de la Danse) and Timelining (Centre Pompidou, Paris).
Other New York costume design credits include, among many others, Ellen Stuart's Perseus at La Mama ETC and the new opera Don Imbroglio, presented at the New York Music Theater Festival by Beth Morrison Projects.
Camille designed costumes for the 2015 feature film Bébé Tigre, directed by Cyprien Vial and produced by Dharamsala and Darius Films. The film opened to critical acclaim and received many awards in film festivals in France. Camille also designed costumes for the short and hilarious satyrical comedy Simiocratie, directed by Nicolas Pleskof. It it set in the court of Louis the XV and features a king, a monkey and a courtesan. Other short film costume design credits include Cadmium green deep, by Emmy Grinwis and Apparition by Sabina Vajraca.
Camille has also worked as an assistant to various senior costume designers. She assisted Jane Greenwood on the recent Broadway revival of Craig Lucas' Prelude to a Kiss, a production of Richard Strauss' Daphne, directed by Mark Lamos at the Santa Fe Opera, and Doug Varone's Orpheo and Euridice for the Lincoln Center's Great Performers series. With designer Constance Hoffman, she worked on productions of Salome (National Opera of Lithuania), Tannhauser (Paris National Opera), Grendel (Los Angeles Opera and New York City Opera). Most recently, she has worked in close relationship with designer Anita Yavich, on various projects, including a puppet production of The Sound of Music for the Salzburg Marionette Theatre, Austria.
In 2001, Camille graduated Magna cum Laude from the Sorbonne University in Paris, with a BA in Philosophy for a thesis on "The Body in French Baroque Opera". She holds an additional BA in English Literature, also from the Sorbonne.
She received her MFA in costume and scenic design in 2004 from the Yale School of Drama, where she studied under the patronage of Ming Cho Lee, Michael Yeargan, Jane Greenwood, Jesse Goldstein, Jennifer Tipton and Stephen Strawbridge.
In 2004, Camille received the Leo Lerman Fellowship award and in 2007, she was chosen as a recipient of the prestigious National Endowment for the Arts/Theatre Communications Group Career Development Program (2007).