Manfred Zapatka was born on October 2, 1942 in Bremen and grew up in Cloppenburg. He studied at the Schauspielschule Bochum (then Westfälische Schauspielschule) from 1962 to 1965. This was followed by his first engagements at the Theater Freiburg (1966-68) and the Theater Essen (1968-72). In the mid-1970s, Claus Peymann brought him to the Stuttgart Staatstheater, where he played Franz Moor in Die Räuber, Kragler in Trommeln in der Nacht and many more. In 1978 he moved to the Munich Kammerspiele, where he worked with directors such as Dieter Dorn (Clavigo as well as Torquato Tasso), with Thomas Langhoff Lorenzaccio and Platonow and Alexander Lang Phädra. He had other important theater works such as Das goldene Vlies and Das Werk directed by Karin Beier in Cologne, Hamburg and also as Hagen at the Nibelungen Festival Worms. In recent years, he was a permanent member of the Munich State Theater from 2012-2019. Parallel to his theater work, Manfred Zapatka was also increasingly active as a film and television actor from the early 1980s, for example in Sohrab Shahid Saless' Utopia, which premiered in competition at the 1983 Berlinale. Furthermore, with a television series KDD Kriminaldauerdienst, which received the German Television Award, and Das Todesspiel by Heinrich Breloer. Manfred Zapatka also worked several times with director Romuald Karmakar such as Himmler Projekt and Frankfurter Kreuz. Other major productions Der grosse Bellheim and as Chancellor in Spiele der Macht followed. Manfred Zapatka lives in Berlin.