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History repeats itself in new Queensland Theatre AD appointment

In a repeat of history Sydney’s Griffin Theatre Company’s Artistic Director Lee Lewis will take over from Sam Strong as Queensland Theatre’s Artistic director in January 2020. This is the second time she has stepped into Sam’s shoes for in 2013 she took over from him at Griffin Theatre.

At that time Sam said: “Lee is one of the country’s finest directors, a passionate and persuasive advocate of new writing, and a person and artist of deep integrity. She has been a vital part of Griffin’s current success and she is ideally placed to lead the company into an even more exciting future.”

“Next year we will celebrate 50 years of being Queensland Theatre: we’ve consolidated the Company as the national home of new stories,” said Queensland Theatre Chair, Elizabeth Jameson. “We will stage the theatrical event of the year in the world premiere of Trent Dalton’s Boy Swallows Universe adapted for the stage by Tim McGarry, and we will welcome Lee Lewis as Artistic Director, taking over from Sam Strong who leaves this company in extraordinary shape.”

Sam Strong said he was delighted that Lee Lewis would be the next Artistic Director of Queensland Theatre. “Lee is an artist and a leader of the highest integrity and intelligence. I’m incredibly proud of how Queensland Theatre has transformed in the last few years, and I can’t wait to see where Lee, in collaboration with the Executive Director Amanda Jolly, take it in the future.”

Lee, who grew up in rural New South Wales, completed a BA (Hons) at the University of Sydney, and then moved to New York to study under Andrei Serban and Anne Bogart at Columbia University completing an MFA (Acting).

In America she worked on and off Broadway with such directors as Julie Taymor, Robert Woodruff, Andre Gregory, Andrei Serban, and Tina Landau.

She returned to Australia in 2001, when she became the first person to receive a Masters of Fine Arts from NIDA in Directing.

Lee has been a prolific director at several companies including Griffin, Bell Shakespeare, Melbourne Theatre Company, Sydney Theatre Company, Hayes Theatre and Australian Theatre for Young People, and many productions have been nominated for awards.

For Griffin she has directed The Bleeding Tree, Splinter, Prima Facie, The Almighty Sometimes, Kill Climate Deniers, Gloria, Eight Gigabytes of Hardcore Pornography, The Homosexuals or ‘Faggots’, Rice, Masquerade, Emerald City, A Rabbit for Kim Jong-il, Replay, Silent Disco, The Bull, The Moon and the Coronet of Stars, The Call, A Hoax.

For Griffin and Bell Shakespeare, she directed The Literati; and for Bell Shakespeare, The School for Wives and Twelfth Night.

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