About Kerstin

I was born and grew up in Stockholm. After my studies in theatre dramaturgy and playwriting at the Dramatic Institute (Dramatiska Institutet) in Stockholm, I worked for several years as a playwright and freelance dramaturge with theatre groups like Orionteatern, Teater Bouffons and the Jewish Theatre in Stockholm.

During my first years as a professional playwright, I spent a lot of time in the rehearsal room, writing for specific actors, which proved extremely important in order to learn the craft and to understand the role of the dramatic text in the context of the stage. In the years to come, my work became more solitary (although often involving a close collaboration with a director or composer). Looking for a common factor in my work, I can discern two main sources in my writing. On the one hand, the desire to understand more of what it means to be a human being in our chaotic, contemporary times. On the other hand, a need to search for the unchanging aspects of being human. The kind of knowledge which can be found in myths and legends and which continues to say something about us, regardless of time and place.

Since 1995 I have been working extensively with opera and music drama, enjoying the special collaboration between libretto writer and composer which is needed to create good music drama. During the years I have written the librettoes of many contemporary Swedish and Danish operas. I have also adapted and modernized texts of classical works like Merry widow (Lehar) and The abduction from the seraglio (Mozart).


Since 2000 I am also writing prose and in 2003 I published my first novel The glass door. In february 2012, my collection of short stories – Disposable – will be published.


Kerstin Perski