German lighting designer Olaf Winter began his career in the theatre at the Wolfgang Borchert Theatre in Münster while he was still studying musicology, journalism and German language and literature. Between 1986 and 1989 he studied lighting design at the Studio and Forum of Stage Design in New York. In 1989 he started to work as lighting designer for William Forsythe and the Frankfurt Ballet. Five years later he was appointed lighting designer of the Frankfurt Opera. He has since designed the lighting not only for numerous productions at the Frankfurt Opera but also for the Salzburg Festival, where he made his debut with Káťa Kabanová in 1998, the Paris Opéra, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, La Scala, Milan, the Bavarian State Opera in Munich and other leading opera houses. He has worked regularly with Claus Guth, Christof Loy and Christoph Marthaler. He was appointed technical director of the Frankfurt Opera in 2001. Since the 2009/10 season he has concurrently held a similar position with the Frankfurt Schauspiel.