The Carnival Cruise Lines National Award in the Arts: Les Waters

Les Waters

This award winner recognizes an artist with outstanding achievement in Louisville and on a national scale – Les Waters. Obie Award winner Les Waters has directed Anne Washburn and Dave Malloy’s Little Bunny Foo Foo, Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas’s Recent Alien Abductions, William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Sarah Ruhl’s For Peter Pan on her 70th Birthday, Charles Mee’s The Glory of the World, Rebecca Gilman’s Luna Gale, Naomi Iizuka’s At the Vanishing Point, Lucas Hnath’s The Christians, Thornton Wilder’s Our Town, Will Eno’s Gnit, Todd Almond’s Girlfriend and Eugene O’Neill’s Long Day’s Journey into Night at Actors Theatre. Waters also previously directed Big Love by Charles Mee at the Humana Festival in 2000, and the site-specific production of Naomi Iizuka’s At the Vanishing Point at the 2004 Humana Festival. From 2003 to 2011, he served as associate artistic director at Berkeley Repertory Theatre. In the last 10 years, his shows have ranked among the year’s best in The New Yorker, The New York Times, Time Out New York, Time Magazine, The Guardian and USA Today. His productions have been seen in New York at Playwrights Horizons, Signature Theatre Company, The Public Theater, Second Stage Theatre, Manhattan Theatre Club, Connelly Theater, Clubbed Thumb and Soho Rep., and regionally at theatres such as the Mark Taper Forum, Steppenwolf Theatre Company, Goodman Theatre, Yale Repertory Theatre, American Conservatory Theater, La Jolla Playhouse and American Repertory Theater. In 2009, he made his Broadway debut with In the Next Room, or the vibrator play. He led the M.F.A. directing program at University of California, San Diego from 1995 to 2003. Waters has served as Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Artistic Director since 2011.


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