John Neumeier was born in 1939 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he received his first dance training. He continued his dance studies in Chicago as well as at Marquette University in Milwaukee where he created his first choreographic works. After further ballet study both in Copenhagen and at The Royal Ballet School in London, John Cranko invited him in 1963 to join Stuttgart Ballet, where he progressed to soloist and continued his choreographic development.
In 1969, Ulrich Erfurth appointed Mr. Neumeier Director of Ballet Frankfurt, where he soon caused a sensation with his new interpretations of such well-known ballets as The Nutcracker and Romeo and Juliet. In 1973, August Everding invited him to become Director and Chief Choreographer of the Hamburg Ballet. Under his direction, the Hamburg Ballet became one of the leading ballet companies on the German dance scene and soon received international recognition.
As a choreographer, Mr. Neumeier has continually focused on the preservation of ballet tradition, while giving his works a modern dramatic framework. His ballets range from new versions of full-length story ballets to musicals and to his symphonic ballets, especially those based on Gustav Mahler's compositions, as well as his choreographies to sacred music.
His latest creations for the Hamburg Ballet: Ghost Light in 2020, Beethoven Poject II in 2021 and Hamlet 21 in 2021. In the repertoire of the Bayerisches Staatsballett, his ballets A Cinderella Story, The Nutcracker, The Lady of the Camellias, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Illusions - like Swan Lake are of great importance.