German marionettist and director. Frank Soehnle attended the Studiengang Figurentheater (Course of Studies in Figure Theatre) in Stuttgart at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Stuttgart (State University of Music and Performing Arts Stuttgart) from 1983 to 1987. He led the company, marotte Figurentheater Kalrsruhe, from 1987 to 1990, and founded in 1991 with Karin Ersching the touring theatre company, figuren theater tübingen (all written in lower case).
Since then, Frank Soehnle has toured worldwide, in groups or as a solo performer. His solo numbers Nachtgesichter (Faces of Night, 1991) and Flamingo Bar (1996) are visual poems on the border between the performing arts and the visual arts. Figures by Frank Soehnle are often hermaphrodite beings, half-human/half-animal or mythological, which he builds from specific materials and found objects. He prefers to manipulate in view of the audience, and also uses objects that transform into characters. His repertoire is sometimes literary, sometimes personal, but also political as with the piece Kinder der Bestie (Children of the Beast, 2000), performed with the actor Yehuda Almagor. Since 1989, he has worked together with the musical group rat’n’X.
Frank Soehnle also teaches at various colleges.
- Sharp, Mary. “Vers une dramaturgie sensorielle: Le rythme et le « Figuren Theater » de Frank Soehnle” [Toward a Sensory Drama: Rhythm and the “Figure Theatre” of Frank Soehnle”]. Masters thesis under the direction of Daniel Lemahieu. Paris: Université Paris III – Sorbonne nouvelle, 1999. URL: http://www.ciefullcircle.fr/maitrise_essais.htm
- Spiess, Katja. “Poesie des Vergänglichen. Ein Portrait des Figurenspielers Frank Soehnle” [Poetry of the Ephemeral. A Portrait of the Puppeteer Frank Soehnle]. Animation fremder Körper [Animation of Foreign Bodies]. Ed. Silvia Brendenal. Berlin: Theater der Zeit Arbeitsbuch, 2000, pp. 64-67.