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Dennis Schwabenland | Research Trip

Palestine | Theatre


Dennis Schwabenland grew up in the Ruhr district. As actor and director, he operates as co-artistic director of the drama group PENG! Palast. He graduated from the academy of arts in Berne (HKB) in 2008 with distinction and was awarded the BEST scholarship (Trächselstipendium) for outstanding graduates of all art academy study courses. During his studies, he received the advancement award of the Armin Ziegler foundation.


With PENG! Palast and the play “Woyzeckmaschine” he took (as a director) first place in the prestigious young talent competition PREMIO. At the end of 2010 PENG! Palast was honoured with the youth award by the Burgergemeinde Bern for their great professionalism and their considerable success in getting young people enthusiastic about theatre.

With PENG! Palast he produced the plays “Hamlet MASSIV” (2008), “and now go home and change your underpants” (2009), “Woyzeckmaschine” (2010) and “Götter der Stadt und Die 120 Tage von Sodom”  (2010 / Gods of the City or The 120 Days of Sodom), “the holycoaster s(HIT) circus” (2011) in cooperation with Machol Shalem Dance House, Jerusalem which was performed in Switzerland, Germany, Netherlands, Austria, Israel as well in Singapore so far, “KING” (2012), “FIGHT! Palast #membersonly” (2014 / shortlist Swiss Theatre Encounter, nomination Leipzig “Bewegungskunst Preis”), “Bye Bye Babel: Eurotopia! & Revue” (2016), “Die Asozialen” (2017) and “FAUL!” (2019).

In 2016 he co-directed (together with Sascha Engel / Kino Kitchen Tel Aviv), produced and acted in the feature film “the holy caster s(HIT) circus” (based on the play by 2011), which won the Bern Film Prize and was invited to the Hamburg and Solothurn Filmfest.

He directed the musical “Sit so guet, s.v.p.” by the authors Kämpf/Urweider/Schwabenland/Hari, which premiered 2017 in the Dampfzentrale Bern. He invented and developed the participatory project “Time For Change”, which the cultural fund of the capital city of Switzerland (Hauptstadtkultur) funded. In 2019 – 2020 it will continue as “Time to Move” with the department of public transport Bernmobil and the Jungen Bühne Bern.


His productions “FIGHT! PALAST #membersonly”, “BYE BYE BABEL”, “Sit so guet, s.v.p.” & “Edward Snowden steht hinterm Fenster und weckt Birnen in” were all shortlisted by the Swiss Theatre Encounter.

Besides, he was working at the theatre Biel-Solothurn, the open-air theatre Augusta Raurica/theatre Basel and with the fringe groups: Club111, Weltalm and Urweider/Kämpf. In 2011 he was as a visiting lecturer at the transdisciplinary institute at the academy of arts in Bern. In 2014 he was performing Dave Gahan in the solo “Als ich einmal tot war und Martin L. Gore mich nicht besuchen kam” (written by Daniel Mezger, director Marie Bues) and 2017 in “Edward Snowden steht hinterm Fenster und weckt Birnen ein”.  


In May 2011 Dennis Schwabenland took part in the International Forum Berlin (“Theatertreffen”). From 2011 – 2016 he was voted onto the board of the “Berufsverband der Freien Theaterschaffende ACT” (association of freelance theatre professionals) and was the president of ACT Bern from 2013 – 2016. At the end of 2013, he was awarded a scholarship „OFF-Stage“ of the Kanton Bern. Since 2014 he is also a member of the board of the Schlachthaus Theater Bern.


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