Ole Lemmeke graduated from Statens Teaterskole in 1984. Just two years later he had his big breakthough at Rialto Theatre in Copenhagen in the play “Orphans” (De efterladte). This let to numerous engagements at most of the major theatres in Denmark, where Ole Lemmeke played a great variety of both serious and comical roles in the modern as well as the classical repertoire.
He landed the converted title role of Chistoffer Marlowes “Edward II” in Ib Thorup’s daring version at Det Ny Teater. The following year he also appeared in Det Ny Teater’s acclaimed production of “Our Country’s Good” (De forviste). At Husets Teater he experienced a personal triumph in Tankred Dorsts “Fernando Krapp Wrote Me This Letter” in 1993 followed by an appearance in an award-winning production of Astrid Saalbach’s Danish play “Morning and Evening”.
Frank McGuinness’ Tony-nominated play “Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me” (Gidslernes nat) brought more acclaim to Ole Lemmeke in the role of a british hostage at Det Danske Teater in 1995. Three years later Ole Lemmeke participated in Betty Nansen Teatret’s theatrical hit “The Exterminating Angel” based on Luis Buñuel’s masterpiece.
Ole Lemmeke has also made important contributions to several classic plays by Shakespeare, Moliere, Tjekhov, Brecht, Wilde, Anouilh and Gorkij.
At Aalborg Theatre he gave an award-winning performance in the challenging titel role (Albert) “Speer” written by David Edgar and directed by Jan Maagaard.
Ole Lemmeke has appeared in several productions at The Royal Theatre in plays by Botho Strauss, Howard Baker, Lars Norén, Yasmina Reza and Christopher Hampton. He has toured The National Theatres in Scandinavia with an international co-production of Henrik Ibsen’s “The Pretenders” (Kongs-Emnerne). He also played Merlin in The Royal Theatre’s spectacular outdoor production of “King Arthur”.
In 2012 scored what is generally considered his greatest stage success as the controvercial gay author and director Herman Bang in the Danish play “Bang & Betty” at Hippodromen, Folketeatret in Copenhagen. For this he received the two highest theatrical honors in Denmark – The Reumert Award and Teaterpokalen – an achievement unsurpassed by any actor.
Most recently he received yet another Reumert for his stand-out performance as the mayor in Gogol’s timeless “The Government Inspector” (also known as “The Inspector General” due to a Danny Kaye-movie loosely based on the play).
In 2007 Ole Lemmeke received a Knighthood of the 1st Class (Ridder af 1. grad) by Her Majesty Queen Margrethe II.
Michael Søby, CPHculture
In 2018 he received his second Reumert for his stand-out performance as the mayor in Gogol’s timeless The Government Inspector
FILM & TV
Ole Lemmeke made his TV-debut in the forgettable sitcom "Sådan er det bare" followed by a supporting turn in a vintage Danish mini-series named "To som elsker hinanden".
The following year Ole Lemmeke won the Danish Film Critic' Bodil Award for Best Actor in a leading role due to his stunning debut filmdebut as a bisexual man in Morten Arnfreds "Heaven and Hell" (Himmel og helvede) based on Kirsten Thorups acclaimed novel).
Also in 1988, Ib Thorup - the man that inspired that character - directed Ole Lemmeke in "Boksning", his first major TV-role. "Boksning" received cult status as the first major Danish gay movie on TV.
Ole Lemmeke then starred in "Dagens Donna", a modern love story, before entering into two World War 2 dramas: An English Language-production called "A Day in October" (En dag i Oktober) and Morten Henriksen's acclaimed "The Naked Trees". The latter won Mr. Lemmeke The Best Actor Award at the Cairo Film Festival, The Danish Academy Award (Robert) and a second Bodil Award for a leading role.
This was followed by magnetic performances in a variety of films including the art house favorite "Mirror of the planet" (Planetens spejle), the spy drama "The Russian Singer" (Den russiske sangerinde) and the Sci-Fi thriller "Possessed" (Besat).
Ole Lemmeke gave one of his most charismatic performances in Morten Henriksen's "The Magnetist's Fifth Winter" based on P. O. Enquist award-winning novel. Mr. Lemmeke headed an international cast that included Rolf Lassgård ("A Man Called Ove") and Ingmar Bergman-favorites Stina Ekblad, Börje Ahlstedt and Erland Josephson.
I 2004 Mr. Lemmeke appeared in the Asta Nielsen-biography "The Abyss" (Afgrunden) and scored a personal triumph in the Danish Bridget Jones-comedy "Nynne", which became a major box office hit.
Mr. Lemmeke showed his diversity in films like "Clash of Egos" (Sprængfarlig bombe), "White Night" (Hvid nat) og "The Early Years: Erik Nietzsche Part 1" (De unge år: Erik Nietzsche sagaen del 1) before returning to director Morten Henriksen in a documetary named "Karen Blixen - Behind Her Mask" (Bag Blixens maske) in 2011
Ole Lemmeke has appeared in several of the most popular TV-series of all times including "Taxa", "Rejseholdet", "Anna Pihl", "Forbrydelsen II", "Rita" og "Badehotellet".
Most recently Mr. Lemmeke was reunited with Oscar- and Palme d'Or-winner Bille August, who directed Lemmeke on stage at The Royal Theatre 15 years earlier. Bille Augusts filmversion of "A Fortunate Man"
(Lykke-Per), one of the very best danish novels of all time, is among the biggest Danish productions of 2018.