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Hans Hoffer


Hans Hoffer is one of the most distinguished set designers in the German-speaking countries. After completing his studies at the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst and Akademie der bildenden Künste in Vienna, he devoted to avant-garde theatre, yet also began co-operating with large stages in Austria, Germany and Switzerland. He also taught at the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Vienna for seven years. Since 1981, he has collaborated with the Austrian stage director Hans Hollmann, with the fruit of their teamwork being numerous acclaimed productions, including those of Raimond Roussel’s play La Poussière de soleils  (The Dust of Suns)and Elfriede Jelinek’s Clara S: musikalische Tragödie in Bonn, Arthur Schnitzler’s Komödie der Verführung (The Comedy of Seduction) at the Schillertheater in Berlin, Shakespeare’s Hamlet at the Burgtheater in Vienna, Tankred Dorst ‘s Die Schattenlinie (The Shadow-line) at the Akademietheater in Vienna, etc.  Hoffer and Hollmann have also created opera productions in tandem, including of Wagner’s Tannhäuser (Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Düsseldorf) and Parsifal (Zurich), Richard Strauss’s Arabella (Semperoper in Dresden), Beethoven’s Fidelio (Wiesbaden), Johann Strauss’s operetta Die Fledermaus (Staatsoper Hamburg), and staged the world premiere of Rudolf Kelterborn’s opera Ophelia at the Schwetzingen Festival and at the Deutsche Oper Berlin. In 2007, they extended their work beyond the German-speaking countries and started to collaborate with the Aréna Theatre in Bratislava, for which they prepared together a production of Marguerite Duras’s play India Song, whileHans Hoffer also designed the sets for a production of Viliam Klimáček’s play Communism (2008, directed by Martin Čičvák) and Hadar Garlon’s Mikveh (2009, directed by Michal Dočekal). Hoffner first worked for the National Theatre in Prague in 2009, when together with the director Martin Čičvák and the costume designer Marija Havran he co-created a production of Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, performed at the Estates Theatre. In addition to set design, Hans Hoffer also occasionally works as a stage director, architect and creator of exhibition installations (e.g. at the Museum of the Wiener Staatsoper).