Bernd Purkrabek studied at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München (Lichtgestaltung).
Bernd is working internationally on Opera, Drama, and Dance. His atmospheric lighting design has been featured in many theatres, stylistically ranging from the darkest drama to the most sensitive minimalism.
He worked in Theatres/Festivals such as: De Nationale Opera Amsterdam, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Theater an der Wien, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Schauspiel Köln, Wiener Festwochen, Glyndebourne Festival, Vlaamse Opera, Grand Theatre de Geneva, Opernhaus Zürich, Wiener Staatsoper, Staatsoper Hamburg, Theatre de Champs-Elysées, Palais Garnier, Opera de St. Etienne, Opera National de Lorraine, Opernhaus & Ballett Graz, Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Oper Frankfurt, New National Theatre Tokyo, Festspielhaus Baden Baden, Liceu Barcelona, Theatre du Capitole Toulouse, Kungliga Operan Stockholm, Oslo Operan, Theater im Bahnhof, Opera du Rhin, Teatro Real Madrid and many others.
He developed the lighting design in collaboration with the artistic team in numerous productions such as: Der Prinz von Homburg, I vespri siciliani, Macbeth, Jenufa, La fanciulla del West, Charodejka, Peter Grimes and Rusalka all directed by Christof Loy; Lazarus, SehnsuchtMeer, Saul and Jephtha directed by Claus Guth; Der Ferne Klang and Der fliegende Holländer directed by Florentine Klepper; Suster Bertken and Troparion both directed by Pierre Audi; Kontrapunkt choreographed by Jörg Weinöhl, Cosi fan tutte, Rosenkavalier and the double bill Eine Florentinische Tragödie/Gianni Schicchi with director Jan Philipp Gloger, Queen of spades with director Stefan Herheim, Don Pasquale and Agrippina directed by Mariame Clément, Orlando (Händel) with director Claus Guth, Rusalka with director Nicola Raab, La Vestale with director Johannes Erath, Königskinder with director Frank Hilbrich, La divisione del mondo by Giovanni Legrenzi, Orfeo (Monteverdi) with director Jetske Mijnssen, Juditha Triumphans (Vivaldi) with director Silvia Costa, Porgy and Bess with director Matthew Wild, Rusalka with director Christoph Loy.
In 2021 he was at Glyndebourne festival for Il turco in Italia collaborating with director Mariame Clement, at Komische Oper in Berlin for Der >Zigeuner<baron with director Tobias Kratzer and at Festival Aix-En-Provence 2021 for Il combattimento o la teoria del cigno nero and Pierrot Lunaire with director Silvia Costa.
He was nominated for the Knight of Illumination Award 2017 for Cosi fan tutte at the Royal Opera House London.