Thomas Ostermeier was born in 1968 in Soltau. From 1992-96 he studied directing at the Hochschule für Schauspielkunst Ernst Busch, Berlin. In 1990-91 he acted in the Faust-Project by Einar Schleef at the Hochschule der Künste, Berlin. In 1993-94 he was assistant director and actor with Manfred Karge in Weimar and at the Berliner Ensemble. In 1995 he directed Die Unbekannte by Alexander Blok in accordance with Meyerhold’s system of biomechanics. In 1996 he directed Recherche Faust/Artaud at the bat-Studiotheater Berlin. From 1996-99 Ostermeier was Artistic Director of the Baracke at the Deutsches Theater, Berlin. Productions there included Fat Men in Skirts by Nicky Silver (1996), Knives in Hens by David Harrower (1997 awarded with Friedrich-Luft-Prize), Brecht’s Mann ist Mann (1997), Suzuki by Alexej Schipenko (1997), Shopping and Fucking by Mark Ravenhill (1998), Below the Belt by Richard Dresser (1998), The Blue Bird by Maeterlinck (1999). In 1998 the Baracke was nominated Theatre of the Year. In 1998 and 1999 Ostermeier directed Disco Pigs by Enda Walsh and »Fire Face« by Marius von Mayenburg at the Schauspielhaus Hamburg. His final production at the Baracke was Suzuki II by Alexej Schipenko.
Since September 1999 Ostermeier is resident director and member of the Artistic Direction of the Schaubühne. He has also directed several productions at the Münchner Kammerspiele: 2002 Der starke Stamm by Marieluise Fleißer, 2005 Vor Sonnenaufgang by Gerhart Hauptmann, 2007 Die Ehe der Maria Braun by Rainer Werner Fassbinder (invited to the Theatertreffen 2008) and 2009 Susn by Herbert Achternbusch, at the Edinburgh Festival: The Girl on the Sofa
by Jon Fosse, 2002 (awarded with the Herald Angel Award) and at the Burgtheater in Vienna: The Master Builder by Henrik Ibsen, 2004. In November 2002 Ostermeier was appointed artiste associé for the Festival d’Avignon by the new artistic director of the festival, Vincent Baudriller.
Invitations to Theatertreffen Berlin with Knives in Hens (1997), Shopping and Fucking (1998), Nora (2003), Hedda Gabler (2006) and Die Ehe der Maria Braun (2008). Furthermore, in 2003 Nora has been awarded with the Nestroy Prize as well as the Politika Prize during the theatre festival in Belgrade BITEF. Hedda Gabler received in 2006 the audience award of the Theatergemeinde Berlin. His productions John Gabriel Borkmann and Hamlet have been awarded with international prizes as best productions in the season 2008/2009: John Gabriel Borkmann with the Grand Prix de la Critique of France (April 2009) and Hamlet with the Barcelona Critics Prize (September 2009). In 2009 he has been appointed Officier des Arts et des Lettres by the French ministry of culture. The decoration was awarded in April 2010 by the Ambassador of France in Berlin. In Mai 2010 Thomas Ostermeier has been announced as president of the Deutsch-Französischer Kulturrat (DKFR), German-French Council of Culture. His production The Cut received the critic´s prize at the international theatre festival KONTAKT in Torun (Poland) in Mai 2010. Thomas Ostermeier receives the Golden Lion of the Venice Biennale for his work in 2011. For Measure for Measure he receives the Friedrich-Luft-Prize for the Best Theatre Performance in Berlin in 2011. In Chile Hamlet has been awarded with the critics prize as Best International Production 2011 and in Turkey with the honor award by the 18th Istanbul Theatre Festival 2012.
His productions are touring worldwide to places like Paris, Avignon, Bordeaux, Marseille, Rennes, Reims, Barcelona, Madrid, Vienna, Naples, Sarajevo, Belgrade, Bucharest, Ljubljana, Zagreb, Novi Sad, Prague, Krakow, Dublin, London, Copenhagen, Oslo, Tampere, Brussels, Lisbon, Athens, Tel Aviv, New York, Caracas, Québec, Ottawa, Hong Kong, Seoul, Tokyo, Taipei, Sydney, Adelaide, Melbourne, Moscow, Omsk, Venice, Buenos Aires and Santiago de Chile.