Tilman O’Donnell was born in the USA to a German mother and American father, and received his training at the National Ballet School in Toronto, Canada. He joined The Göteborg Ballet under the direction of Anders Hellström in 2001. In 2002 Tilman danced at Staatstheater Saarbrücken, and thereafter joined the Cullberg Ballet from 2003 until 2007. He was a member of The Forsythe Company in Frankfurt from 2007-2012, and a guest artist until June 2015.
Tilman made his debut as a choreographer in 2002 and has been awarded first prize in two major international choreographic competitions. In 2005 he was appointed both ”Dancer To Watch” and ”Choreographer To Watch” by the leading European magazine Ballet Tanz. In 2011 he created two site-specific works for Cullberg Ballet in Stockholm. In 2012 he created the piece August did not have what is commonly considered good taste as far as furniture is concerned. He has also created works for SPIRA Jönköping/Cullberg To Come, Staatstheater Graz and The Göteborgs Operans Danskompani, including the most recent work Whatever Singularity #453: Solo For Maxime / Dancing With Alain. In 2014 Tilman was invited to be artist in residence for two months by the Goethe Institut in Montreal, Canada, together with Cyril Baldy. His most recent work is titled In Life & Love & So On and was created for Corpus/The Royal Danish Ballet. He is currently expanding his short, collaborative work In Some Sense (with Mikkel Ploug) into a full evening work.
He was recently nominated as “Hoffnungsträger” by the prominent European dance journal Tanz.