Speaker - Official Opening Night of the Arts Festivals Summit on Sunday 23 April 2023 | 20.00-22.30
Jorn Weisbrodt was born in Hamburg on 26 January 1973. He studied opera directing at the music conservatory "Hanns Eisler" in Berlin. He is married to Rufus Wainwright and currently manages his career and produces his work.
Until 2016 he served as the artistic adviser to the Music Center in Los Angeles where he produced a large birthday concert for Joni' Mitchell's 75th birthday that was released as an album and movie across the globe. He served as the inaugural artistic director of ALL ARTS, a cultural TV station funded and operated by WNET, New York's Public Broadcasting Station from 2018 to 2020. Between 2012 and 2016 he was the Artistic Director of the Luminato Festival in Toronto where he commissioned and produced new works with artists such as Marina Abramovic, Lemi Ponifasio, and R. Murray Schafer. In 2016, the festival reactivated the decommissioned Hearn Generating Station and turned it temporarily into the largest multi-arts venue in the world three times the size of the Tate Modern. Before this appointment he was working as the executive director of RW Work Ltd. representing and managing the work of Robert Wilson and as the director of The Watermill Center – a laboratory for Performance founded by Robert Wilson in New York. He has been instrumental in producing productions such as The Life and Death of Marina Abramovic and the worldwide tour and revival of Robert Wilson’s and Philip Glass’ opera Einstein on the Beach. For The Watermill Center he has established partnerships with the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Baryshnikov Arts Center, Kampnagel Hamburg, the Donaufestival in Krems, the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, Performa, the Purnati Arts Center in Indonesia, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Columbia University among others.
He has been the artistic production director at the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in Berlin from 2002 until 2007 producing contemporary operatic performances with artists such as John Bock, Jonathan Meese, Dan Graham, Tony Oursler and Gregor Schneider and has been part of the artistic leading team of the Staatsoper Unter den Linden and involved in all programming with the artistic director Peter Mussbach and the music director Daniel Barenboim. He was one of the initiators of the Zwischenpalastnutzung e.V. developing a cultural program for the Palast der Republik, the former home of the GDR Parliament before its tear down in 2007. At the Staatsoper Unter den Linden he worked on the world premiere of Hans Werner Henze’s new opera Phaedra with set designs by Olafur Eliasson that toured internationally, Dmitry Cerniakoff’s first European opera premiere outside of Russia, Tristan and Isolde with the set design debut of Herzog and de Meuron and a new opera by French composer Pascal Dusapin with the set design debut of the Scandinavian artist duo Elmgreen and Dragset among others.
He served on the artistic advisory committees of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Trust, the French American Cultural Exchange among others and has consulted for WNYC’S Greene Space in Lower Manhattan and the Onassis Foundation in New York.
From 2001 until 2002 he was an assistant director with the Deutsches Theater in Berlin working with directors such as Michael Thalheimer and Robert Wilson. In 1998 and 2000, he was Robert Wilson’s personal assistant working at institutions such as the Metropolitan Opera in New York, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the Salzburg Festival, the Festival d’Automne, the Golden Mask Festival in Moscow and many other institutions around the world.