Obie Award-winning director Les Waters has been named Actors Theatre of Louisville’s new artistic director.
As associate artistic director at Tony Award-winner Berkeley (Calif.) Repertory Theatre the past eight years, Waters’ shows garnered critical acclaim, routinely ranking among the year’s best by critics in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Time Out New York, Time magazine and USA Today.
“It is an honor and a privilege to take up the reins at Actors Theatre of Louisville, an organization I’ve long admired,” Waters said. “I’ve had the opportunity to direct twice at Actors Theatre, and I was deeply impressed with the theater, its staff and the community at large.
“I am committed to making theater here that is passionate and intelligent, funny and heartfelt and to leading Actors Theatre to new artistic endeavors. I look forward to being a part of this community, to making a new home in Louisville, and to continuing Actors Theatre’s incredible legacy of local and national acclaim.”
Waters will begin a transition to his new post Jan. 9 and assume full-time duties in late March.
“His appointment will ensure Actors Theatre continues to fulfill its commitment to support theater artists, promote new work and present quality artistic experiences for the citizens of Kentucky and beyond,” said Ted Nixon, Actors board president.
“Les Waters brings with him an outstanding artistic track record and a devotion to both contemporary work and the re-envisioning of classic texts,” said Todd Lowe, search committee chairman. “He has demonstrated a real passion for the commissioning and production of work by important new voices and shares Actors Theatre’s commitment to supporting the innovation and imagination of the American playwright.”
Waters replaces Marc Masterson, who stepped down in May after 11 years to become artistic director at South Coast Repertory Theatre in Costa Mesa, Calif.