“From the moment I met him I knew I wanted to work with him. He is very intelligent, extremely imaginative, and very quick to grasp whatever is going on and immediately lend himself to the situation at hand. He is prepared, responsible, excited, willing, always available and will attempt ANYTHING, besides being a delightful young man. The work we did together became very innovative and free and designed itself in the moment. After we worked together, I saw him perform an amazing piece (which he had written) in which he played both the teacher and the student. It was moving, funny, engrossing and a highlight of the evening. It was true, simple, natural, intimate and very compelling.”
– Anthony Zerbe
The recipient of undergraduate acting degrees in NYC and a Masters degree from RADA, Gunnar has worked extensively in theatre and film in both Europe and the United States. Born and raised a Dutchman, he was taught the values of curiosity and passion from a very young age. As a child, he was always more artistically and musically inclined, but his true vocation was found at age 10 when he took a keen interest in theatre and film. Immediately, he started landing the leading roles in the school’s plays and musicals. Disagreeing with the rest of the educational system, he left high school at 17 and moved to New York City at the prime age of 18 when he was accepted at both conservatory programs at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting and the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute. It was then, he said, when ‘epiphanies became more of an everyday given than a rarity’. At Stella, he starred in productions of ‘Dog Sees God’ as the heavily bullied teenager and piano virtuoso Beethoven and in his graduation play ‘Cloud 9’ as the middle-aged aristocrat Clive and the promiscuous Gerry. He also wrote a one-man show called ‘the Pupil’ for the Dirt Festival. After his graduation in 2012, he was cast as the lead Seneca in the short movie ‘Slight Rebellion’, and has played starring and leading roles in other indie productions such as Ignasty in ‘Yung: Amerikan‘, and Rob in the production ‘twentysomething‘ which had its US premiere at the Beverly Hills Film Festival. He originated the role of the fabulous Felicity Hydrangea Karmikel in the play ‘The Dungeons and the Dragons‘ at the Samuel French Festival, and was quickly signed by a manager who sent him out for big television and film projects.
Unexpected tragedy struck when he couldn’t remain in the United States due to visa problems and he relocated to Amsterdam where he joined the ensemble of the Orange Tea Theatre company. Here, he played Dr. Jung in ‘Strange Divide‘ at the Amsterdam Fringe Festival and Marko in ‘Borderlands’, among other roles in short, self-written plays. It was then when he applied for and was admitted as the first ever Dutch actor to be admitted to train full-time at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London, starting his post-graduate studies at the King’s College validated MA Theatre Lab program in 2016. Re-examining and broadening his skills in a truly experimental and highly collaborative framework – he built his credentials in physical theatre and other established and emerging performance practices. Amongst them include playing Prometheus in an ensemble-devised production of ‘Prometheus Bound‘ in an ancient theatre in Messini Greece, playing Krogstad in ‘A Doll’s House‘ and the Chaplain in Bertolt Brecht’s ‘Mother Courage and her Children‘, working with Jan Fabre and his team on a production of ‘Je Suis Sang‘ and applying Meyerhold practices to the portrayal of Helena in ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream‘. After playing a prophet in his graduation show ‘Clay To Flesh‘, he was immediately cast as the lead in a theatre adaptation of ‘On Having No Head‘ which he has toured with through a variety of cities in England, played Johannes in the UK-premier of ‘Anna-Liisa’ and played Benedick in a London production of Much Ado About Nothing. He also starred in the independent medium-length film ‘Comme Des Grands’, for which he has won 3 international Best Supporting Actor awards and played the Prince of Orange in the pilot episode of Julian Fellowes’ Belgravia.
Outside of film and theatre he has been busy doing voice-over and commercial work for the likes of Schweppes, Goliath Games, Cisco, Ring, Pertazza Coffee and Workman Publishing, and has been busy exploring the fields of immersive theatre and experience design in Paris, Berlin, London, the Netherlands and Poland as an actor, director and facilitator. Aside from acting, he is very passionate about philosophy and sailing and is the co-founder of Gradual, building tech tooling for intentional learning within communities. In the time to come, he aspires to keep innovating the theatre and experience design scene by creating new ways of immersion and play.