Artistic Director, Fisher Center; Professor of Theater and Performance; Senior Curator, Center for Human Rights and the Arts
Primary Academic Program: Theater and Performance
Biography:Gideon Lester is artistic director of the Fisher Center at Bard and senior curator at the Open Society University Network’s Center Human Rights and the Arts. A festival director, creative producer, and dramaturg, he has collaborated with and commissioned a broad range of American and international artists across disciplines, including Romeo Castellucci, Justin Vivian Bond, Brice Marden, Sarah Michelson, Nature Theater of Oklahoma, Claudia Rankine, Kaija Saariaho, Peter Sellars, and Anna Deavere Smith.
Recent projects include Where No Wall Remains, an international festival on borders (co-curated with Tania El Khoury); Daniel Fish’s Oklahoma! (Tony award); Pam Tanowitz’s Four Quartets; Ronald K. Brown and Meshell Ndegeocello’s Grace and Mercy; and Ashley Tata’s Mad Forest. He founded and directs Live Arts Bard, the Fisher Center’s residency and commissioning program. He was previously co-curator of Crossing the Line Festival and acting artistic director at the American Repertory Theater.
As a writer for the stage, his translations include Overboard and King by Michel Vinaver, The Island of Slaves and The Dispute by Marivaux, Büchner’s Woyzeck, and Brecht’s Mother Courage; and his adaptations include Kafka’s Amerika, Wim Wenders’s Wings of Desire, and Bulgakov’s Master and Margarita.
A professor at Bard College, he was director of Bard’s undergraduate Theater and Performance Program from 2012 to 2020, and has previously held faculty positions at Columbia and Harvard.
Lester received his BA from Oxford University, and completed his graduate training at Harvard, where he was a Fulbright and Frank Knox Scholar. He holds a bachelor’s degree in English Language and Literature from Oxford University, and a diploma in dramaturgy from Harvard’s Institute for Advanced Theater Training.
Departments: Arts,Fisher Center for the Performing Arts
Location: Fisher Center for the Performing Arts