Episode 127. Les Waters – Artistic Director of Actors Theatre of Louisville (“ATL”)
Theatre director Les Waters’ interest in contemporary art and new plays drives him in his career.
Born to a working class family in rural England, Les is an award-winning, British theatre director. He has numerous theatre credits in New York and around the U.S., including winning an Obie for the premier of “Big Love” at the Humana Festival.
Les headed the M.F.A. directing program at UC San Diego from 1995 to 2003. He also served as associate artistic director with the Berkeley Repertory Theatre from 2003 to 2011.
In 2000, and again in 2004, Les came to Louisville to direct shows for the Humana Festival. In 2012, he was hired as artistic director of the Actors Theatre of Louisville and took charge of the Humana Festival, succeeding Mark Masterson.
In its previous 50 years, Actors Theatre of Louisville only had three artistic directors. Actors Theatre of Louisville is considered one of the most prestigious professional theatre companies in the United States. It has introduced over 400 plays, and earned many awards, including a Tony award.
Les is married to set designer, Annie Smart; They have two daughters and one son.