LILLIAN STILLWELL has choreographed throughout Europe and in the USA since 2009. She is the designated Dance Director and Chief Choreographer at Theater Münster, Germany beginning in the 2022/23 season.

Lillian Stillwell grew up in Minneapolis, MN, received her classical training at Ballet Arts Minnesota and the Milwaukee Ballet, and completed a Bachelor of Arts in Dance at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.  A 15-year dance career followed, lastly from 2005 – 2012 with Johannes Wieland in New York City and at the State Theater in Kassel, Germany where she choreographed in all of the departments.
Since then, her work has been seen at Theater Basel, Oper Graz, the Royal Danish Opera, Philharmonie Luxembourg, Norwegian National Opera and Ballet and at numerous city, state and national theaters throughout Germany. In 2020 she founded SNOW productions in Switzerland with Tom Ryser as a dance research and production laboratory with all-local artists and collaborators. Her first full-length dance evening AFTERLIFE will premiere on November 4th on Gannet, a former lighthouse ship on the banks of the Rhein River in Basel after artistic residencies at Dampfzentrale Bern and Braswell Art Center and through the generous support of SwissLos Fonds Basel-Stadt and numerous foundations.
Lillian’s work combines physical and emotional extremes with precise musicality. She understands dance as connection to others and to our environment in a shared world. Beyond choreography, she is interested in opening and demystifying the creation process, applying ditigal tools to analogue experiences and developing sustainable working, production and performance methods. She is engaged in establishing new leadership models and is currently studying in the Executive Masters in Arts Administration at the University of Zürich.
Lillian Stillwell has taught dance and choreography at the University of Minnesota Dance Program, ­St. Olaf College and TU Dance Company and School (USA) as well as at Choreolab Europe and Profitraining Basel (Switzerland). She is currently creating productions for the Dutch National Opera & Ballet, Oper Zürich and Bühne Aarau in Switzerland while preparing to begin her new leadership position at Theater Münster in August 2022.

Collaborators: Intitutions, Dancers, Teams, Choreographers
To read Reviews of Lillian’s work please scroll down
Lillian Dancing Photos


Interview with Lillian Stillwell and Tom Ryser,, Swiss cultural Tastemakers
…a completely new musictheater experience has been created here by Jochen Biganzoli, Milo Pablo Momm, Tom Ryser and Lillian Stillwell, each of them an alpha director.  The differences between the individual signatures harmonize wonderfully.“ shz, ALIVE! SAISONSCHLUSS_20 / Theater Lübeck (2020)

It was a richly varied array of images that changed scenes between the theater,  the island,  the museum and cathedral and out of town.“ Hl-live, ALIVE! SAISONSCHLUSS_20 / Theater Lübeck (2020)
Of European ranking…here in Copenhagen they sing with tendness and grace, effortlessly choreographed by Lillian Stillwell to fit the singers like a glove.
Opernwelt, L’ORFEO / Royal Danish Opera (2020)
Effervescent, at times ecstatic, and delicately sensitive, Lillian Stillwell has found a movement language in which nothing seems extraneous. Everything happens naturally, unfolding out of the context of the story.
Musicalzentrale, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR / Theater Basel (2016)
This is no run-of-the-mill musical choreography but true dance theater. Lillian Stillwell choreographs with a ferocious appetite for various movement styles. The opening song after the intermission “Too Darned Hot” flies into a frenzy and builds to the scorching high point….Wunderbar!
Musicals Magazine, KISS ME KATE / Staatstheater Kassel (2015)
Kinky choreography by Lillian Stillwell.
Weser-Kurier, LAZARUS / Theater Bremen (2018)
Choreographer Lillian Stillwell and director Tom Ryser integrate opera and dance astoundingly.  The four dancers on pointe create a second dimension through their otherworldly gestures, which makes the spiritual aspects of the ritual visible. On the other end of the spectrum, the Street-Chorus lets loose with breakdance.
neuemusikzeitung, MASS / Theater Lübeck (2017)
The connecting element of the entire artistically well-crafted and buoyant result is Lillian Stillwell’s modern choreography.
Kieler Nachrichten, THE FAIRY QUEEN / Theater Lübeck (2015)
Nominierung: Choreographin des Jahres
Musicals Magazin, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR / Thetaer Basel (2016)
The choreography by Lillian Stillwell is a highlight of the production. The dance ensemble is brilliantly erotic and acrobatic. Fred’s dresser Pat throws down a wicked solo and the strong Opera Chorus also swings along strongly.
HNA, KISS ME KATE / Staatstheater Kassel (2015)
Their choreography, created by Lillian Stillwell, incorporates martial arts and other elements in the most elegant way. The disciplines are brought together astoundingly naturally.
Hamburger Feuilleton, THE FAIRY QUEEN / Theater Lübeck (2015)
Lillian Stillwell has developed choreography that could be described as classical ballet with modern elements, to wonderful effect. The four dancers could be described most accurately as God’s Ideas.
Ihr Opernfreund, MASS / Theater Lübeck (2017)
The fantastic choreography by Lillian Stillwell transforms the groove of the music into movement: she lets the Theater Basel chorus and Münster Gospelchoir loose as a pulsing mass, uses a couple of them as arm-waving Backup-Girls, engages acrobatic dancers and choreographs a wonderful tap-dance number for King Herod.
Tageswoche Basel, JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR / Theater Basel (2016)
The program quotes Wsewolod Meyerhold: The actor in a musical drama must recognize the essence of the score and translate all of its subtleties into his movement language. That succeeds outstandingly under the Movement Direction by Lillian Stillwell.
Göttinger Tageblatt, THE LOVE OF THREE ORANGES / Staatstheater Kassel (2016)
One just can’t get enough of the exhilarating chorus scenes choreographed by Lillian Stillwell.
NDR, SUNSET BOULEVARD / Theater Lübeck (2016)
The choreography by Lillian Stillwell deserves special praise. Her expressive dance images contribute significantly to the overall totally convincing and coherent interpretation. In this production, the successful musical is not just reproduced, it is taken seriously.
Musicals Magazine, EVITA / Staatstheater Kassel (2013)