Nicolas Stemann, born in Hamburg in 1968, studied directing at the Max-Reinhardt Seminar in Vienna and at the Institute for Theater, Music Theater and Film in Hamburg. During his studies he worked as hotel and restaurant pianist, as singer and guitarist. Music has always played a central role in his works. Again and again he has been requested to direct operas: for the first time in 2010 by the Komische Oper in Berlin (Offenbach’s “La perichole”), in 2014 by the Staatsoper Berlin (“Rein Gold” an adaptation of the stage essay of the same name by Elfriede Jelinek and the music from Richard Wagner’s “Ring”).
His initial projects had their origin primarily at the Hamburg Kampnagelfabrik (“Terror-Trilogie”, “Möwe”, “Verschwörung”, etc.); since 1997 “WERTHER!” featuring Philipp Hochmair (Gostner Hoftheater Nürnberg) has been performed at many theaters and international festivals – and still is today.
Since then Stemann has regularly directed plays at the Schauspiel Hannover and the Thalia Theater in Hamburg, the Deutsche Theater in Berlin, the Schauspiel Köln and the Burgtheater Wien, where he staged, among other works, the debut performances of “Das Werk” (2004) and “Babel” (2005) by Elfriede Jelinek. Numerous other debut performances of her texts followed suit, at the Deutsche Theater (“Über Tiere”), at the Thalia Theater (“Ulrike Maria Stuart” and “Abraumhalde”), in Cologne (“Die Kontrakte des Kaufmanns”), at the Staatsoper Berlin (“Rein Gold”) and most recently “Die Schutzbefohlenen” on the occasion of the festival Theater der Welt (invitations to the Berliner Theatertreffen and the Mülheimer Theatertage 2015). Not only these works but also his stagings of classics have repeatedly been invited to national and international festivals, to the Mülheimer Theatertage and to the Berliner Theatertreffen. This list includes “Hamlet” (TT 2002), “Die Räuber” (TT 2009) and “Faust 1 and 2” (TT 2012), which were initially presented at the Salzburger Festspiele and in 2013 also at the Festival d’Avignon. In 2012 his staging of “Faust” was awarded the 3sat Prize of the Berliner Theatertreffen honoring his trend-setting artistic-innovative achievements. At this event he was also named “Director of the Year”.
Stemann himself appears again and again on stage: not only in the production “Die Kontrakte des Kaufmanns”, which he re-directs and shapes live at every performance, but also in installative works, such as “Kommune der Wahrheit” (Wiener Festwochen/Thalia Theater 2013), concert-oriented theater projects (“Zwölf letzte Lieder” DT, “Der demographische Faktor” Schauspiel Köln) as well as in the improvisational format “Gefahr-Bar” which was initially developed for the Burgtheater. Stemann designed this format together with his long-standing companions and music colleagues Thomas Kürstner and Sebastian Vogel.
Starting with the 2015/16 season Nicolas Stemann will be in-house director at the Münchner Kammerspiele.