Jürgen Flimm made theater with body and soul. Under his direction, Hamburg’s Thalia Theater became one of the most popular in the country. Later he took over the directorship of the Berlin State Opera. Flimm has now died at the age of 81.
The theater director and former director of the Berlin State Opera Unter den Linden, Jürgen Flimm, is dead. The 81-year-old died in Berlin on Saturday, as the State Opera announced.
The son of a family of doctors, he studied theater studies, German and sociology in Cologne and became an assistant director at the Munich Kammerspiele in 1968. He described his early years as tough, his salary was barely enough to support his family with five children.
Hamburg Thalia Theater coined
It got easier later: from 1985 to 2000, Flimm was director of the Thalia Theater in Hamburg. With a young ensemble and spectacular repertoire, he made it one of the best-attended houses in the country.
After these 15 years he was drawn to the opera. Flimm has staged with superstars at the most important opera houses. In 2000 he staged the so-called Millennium Ring in Bayreuth. Later he became director of the Ruhr Triennale and the Salzburg Festival.
Instead of retiring, in 2010 he took over as director of the Berlin State Opera Unter den Linden. Flimm was also active internationally, from Milan to London to New York, where the “New York Times” voted his production of Beethoven’s “Fidelio” the best opera of the year. Flimm was an enthusiast – well into old age.