Born in Stuttgart in 1959, Stephan Kimmig trained as an actor at the New Munich Theatre School. From 1988 to 1996 Kimmig lived in Amsterdam and worked as a freelance director in Dutch and Belgian fringe theatre. From 1996 to 1998 he was Resident Director at Theater Heidelberg, from 1998 to 2000 at Stuttgart State Theatre, from 2000 to 2009 at the Thalia Theater Hamburg and from 2009 to 2016 at the Deutsches Theater in Berlin. He also directed at venues including Schauspiel Frankfurt, the Münchner Kammerspiele, the Vienna Burgtheater and Schauspielhaus Zürich.
His productions of «Thyestes – Curse of the Atrides» by Hugo Claus after Seneca (2002, Stuttgart State Theatre), «A Doll’s House» by Henrik Ibsen (2003, Thalia Theater Hamburg), Schiller’s «Maria Stuart» (2008, Thalia Theater Hamburg) and Dennis Kelly’s «Love and Money» (2010, Thalia Theater Hamburg) were invited to the Berlin Theatertreffen. In 2004 he was awarded the Vienna Theatre Prize NESTROY as Best Director for Grillparzer’s «The Golden Fleece» (Vienna Burgtheater). In 2007 «Maria Stuart» was awarded both the Rolf Mares Prize and the FAUST Theatre Prize. In 2011 he was awarded the FAUST Theatre Prize as Best Director for Gorky’s «Children of the Sun» (Deutsches Theater Berlin). He made his opera debut in 2009 with Mozart’s «Don Giovanni» at the Bayerische Staatsoper. His most recent productions were for Stuttgart State Theatre, Theater Bremen, the Deutsches Theater Berlin and Theater Basel.
Hamsun’s trilogy tells the story of a man who feels he has been overlooked by the elites that set the tone and cheated of social recognition. The philosopher Ivar Kareno evolves from a 30-year-old radical and anti-liberal writer on the fringes of poverty into a 40-year-old private tutor to the two sons of a businessman in a distant coastal region. Here Kareno sits brooding in his writing tower, while an infectious fever descends on people, arriving from the North, the businessman Otermann is driven mad by his wealth and a strange man wanders between the houses, rumoured to be justice. Ten years later, the 50-year-old Kareno is still hoping for a major turning point in his life. And he will indeed reach a milestone where he must decide whether he will remain true to the radical ideas of his youth or to pursue a career that is more measured politically.Spiel des Lebens (The game of life)