Sven Ortel

Video Projection Designer

In the 1990s Sven lit small scale theatre shows and complemented this with lighting for movies, advertisements and music videos in Germany. Coupled with the subsequent study of theatrical Lighting Design in London this led Sven to develop a keen interest in digital technologies and their potential for the stage.
Since 2001 he has been an associate of Mesmer, a collective of likeminded people that explore and promote the use of imagery and projection in the live arts.
For the National Theatre, London Mesmer has provided design and production services for over twenty productions and has established a video department to introduce technologies and techniques that have become de-facto standard today. With Mesmer he also conceived the video system and process that brought to life the technologically groundbreaking musical The Woman in White.
Over the course of the last decade, Sven’s work has been displayed all over the world. His range of collaborators includes some of the most established and celebrated artists of the age, among them directors Michael Blakemore, Matthias Hartman, Jonathan Kent, Robert Lepage, Simon McBurney, Trevor Nunn, Deborah Warner, David Leveaux and Francesca Zambello, choreographer Helgi Tomasson, conductor Valery Gergiev and set designer George Tsypin.
His most recent projects include Deuce, directed by Michael Blakemore on Broadway, Complicite’s A Disappearing Number, directed by Simon McBurney, Disney’s The Little Mermaid on Broadway, directed by Francesca Zambello, Swan Lake for San Francisco Ballet, Theatre For A New Audience’s off-Broadway Hamlet and the re-staging of the Mariinsky Theatre’s Ring Cycle under maestro Valery Gergiev in St Petersburg in Russia and for the Royal Opera House, London. Current and future projects include collaborations with New York’s Guggenheim on the Blaue Reiter art movement, the musical Wonderland in Tampa Bay and Houston and the opera Die Frau ohne Schatten at the Mariinksy Theatre in St Petersburg. He is based in New York and London.

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