Olaf Freese Lighting designer

© Bahnhof-Foto


Olaf Freese was born in Berlin in 1968. After completing his technical training, he worked at the Berliner Ensemble and Schauspielhaus Hamburg, before becoming lighting director at Schauspiel Hannover (2000-2003), Deutsches Theater Berlin (2003-2007) and Staatsoper Unter den Linden Berlin (2007-2020). Since 1992, he has worked as a lighting designer at Deutsches Schauspielhaus Hamburg, Residenztheater Munich, Burgtheater Vienna, Staatsoper and Schauspiel Hannover, Staatsoper Hamburg, Staatsoper Vienna, Bayerische Staatsoper Munich, National Opera Amsterdam, Royal Opera House London, La Scala Milan, Bolshoi Theatre Moscow, New National Theatre Tokyo.

He is a regular guest at the Salzburg Festival. Olaf Freese has recently designed lighting for productions by Claus Guth, Jossi Wieler, Lydia Steier, Wim Wenders, Andre Heller and Johannes Erath. In 2016, he designed the lighting for Stockhausen's Donnerstag aus Licht for the Theater Basel, directed by Lydia Steier, named best director of the 2015-2016 season by Opernwelt magazine.

He worked on the 2019 Berlin production of Violetter Schnee directed by Claus Guth, whose set by Étienne Pluss won the FAUST-Theater prize. His work on Salome at Moscow's Bolshoi Theatre has been nominated for the Masque d'Or 2021 in the Lighting Design category. Olaf Freese teaches lighting design at Dresden's Hochschule für Bildende Künste, scenography department, and at Hamburg's HfBK. He recently designed the lighting for Don Carlo in Naples, The Magic Flute in Montpellier, Così fan tutte and Hamlet in Berlin.

At the Opéra national de Paris: Les Maîtres chanteurs de Nuremberg, 2016; Salome, 2022

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