Nina Wester

Born11 Aug. 1974
FunctionsDirector, Dramatist/Playwright, Theatre director
NationalityNorwegian
GenderFemale

About Nina Wester

Nina Wester (full name Nina Elisabeth Wester, born 1974 and brought up in Otterøy, the county of Nord-Trøndelag) is a Norwegian playwright, director and theatre manager, educated at Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts (SADA) in Stockholm. She is also educated within film theory and sociology at NTNU in Trondheim. Wester has led Hålogaland Theatre (HT) in Tromsø from January 1 2013.

She started her professional theatre career as a director for the independent performance art company Linedanserne, and a performing arts instructor for the county of Nordland, working from Lofoten.

Nina Wester has often selected to work with theatre with a documentary access point or a topical political theme.

Among the productions Nina Wester has directed for Hålogaland Theatre is the documentary theatre production Velkommen* (Welcome), for which she had developed the script in collaboration with Mikkel Bugge (2010), Shakespeare's Hamlet in a director's theatre interpretation (2012), Cora Sandel's Krane's Café (2013) and Jonas Hassen Khemeri's I Call My Brothers (2013).

Her interpretation of Sartre's No Exit was staged by The Norwegian Theatre, her own production company Nina Wester Produksjoner and The National Theatre in collaboration in 2009. For The Norwegian Theatre she created Ulovleg norsk* (Illegally Norwegian), springing out from the story of the paperless immigrant Maria Amelie, opening in May 2011. Later the same month her staging of America Vera-Zavala's Etno Porn opened at The National Stage during Bergen International Festival.

*Not yet translated into the English. The title within parentheses is the Norwegian title's literal meaning.

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    Nina Wester has staged several productions in Sweden. In 2005 she wrote and directed Fjäderskogen* (The Feather Forrest), a production for children, visiting The Royal Dramatic Theatre in 2006. In 2007 she directed Alan Rickman and Katherine Viner's documentary monologue My Name is Rachel Corrie for Stockholm City Theatre. She wrote and directed Som Jerusalem* (Like Jerusalem) for the same theatre, with its premiere in 2008.

    In 2008 her production for children called Love och cirkusfåglarna* (Love and the Circus Birds) was performed for the first time, at The Royal Dramatic Theatre. Wester wrote and directed this production, and the play has later been performed in Norway under the title Linus og sirkusfuglene* (Linus and the Circus Birds) at Hedmark Theatre (directed by Toril Solvang) in 2009, and at Akershus Theatre in 2010 (directed by Audny Chris Holsen).

    Nina Wester directed No Tears for Queers for Riksteatern and Regionteater Väst in collaboration in 2009. For Folkteatern in Gothenburg she directed Jonas Hassen Khemeri's Apathy for Beginners in 2011.

    A version of Jonas Hassen Khemeri's We Who Are Hundred, directed by Nina Wester for Rogaland Theatre, won The Hedda Award 2010 in the production of the year category.

    The Hedda jury gave the following reason:

    "Productions of recently written foreign contemporary drama are not what we experience the most at Norwegian stages. The more of a joy is it that this year's winner of this category is just that, a rather recent text - an original, uninhibited and merry comedy which in addition appeals to a wide audience.

    A young and relatively new director, educated abroad, has signed a playful, transparently light and positively theatrical production in which the serious undertones of the text are promoted, near unnoticeably, but still with assurance. In dazzling interaction on equal footing, precisely paced and with unyielding nerve, three wonderful actors convey the diverse personality of the human being. The stage design is effectful and the costumes invite to using the imagination. What more can one demand?

    The award for production of the year goes to We Who Are Hundred at Rogaland Theatre."

    Sources:

    Association of Norwegian Theatres and Orchestras, nto.no, 28.04.2011, http://www.nto.no/pub/NTO/hedda/?aid=485#NTO

    Hålogaland Theatre, press release at the announcement that Nina Wester would be the theatre's new director, http://archive.today/RVUJ

    Scenekunst.no, interview with Nina Wester under the title Hålogaland får ny sjef (literally: Hålogaland gets a new boss), http://arkiv.scenekunst.no/artikkel_8482.nml

    *Not yet translated into the English. The title within parentheses is the Norwegian and/or Swedish title's literal meaning.

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