Meet the Director - Elliott Lemberg
Elliott Lemberg has been the Artistic Director of NA Theatre since August, 2007. Mr. Lemberg earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Directing and Theatre Education from Ball State University (BSU) in 2007. While a student at BSU, he was a member of "The Human Faustus Project" at the Virginia B. Ball Center for Creative Inquiry, an innovative semester-long project for which a theatre professor and 15 students wrote a full-length play centered on the Faust myth and the Human Genome Project. For his Ball State University Honors College graduate thesis, Mr. Lemberg directed and produced Mark Ravenhill's Some Explicit Polaroids in the David Owsley Museum of Art located on the BSU campus. In the fall of 2006, his production of the original play Erratica: An Academic Farce by Reina Hardy was adjudicated for entry into the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival.
His first production at New Albany High School, Wendy Kesselman's adaptation of The Diary of Anne Frank, was selected to perform at the Ohio Educational Theatre Association's annual State Thespian Conference in the spring of 2008. Also that year, he partnered with Limited Brands to bring Judy Shepard, the mother of Matthew Shepard, to New Albany to speak about her experiences before a performance of his The Laramie Project production.
In his ten years at New Albany High School, Mr. Lemberg has written the entire curriculum for NA Theatre, which includes the following courses: Introduction to Drama, Acting the Method, Honors Actor's Studio, Stagecraft, and Flickering Dreams: An Introduction to Film Art. He worked with Kenyon College professor Benjamin Viccellio on the development of Introduction to the Theatre - KC, a class taught through their Academic Partnership program. A college credit plus course, students enrolled in Introduction to the Theatre - KC earn both high school and Kenyon College credit.
Mr. Lemberg's innovative Robot Theatre collaboration with the high school Robotics classes has received national recognition in The New York Times and Dramatics Magazine and was profiled in The Columbus Dispatch. His 2014 production of The Laramie Project Cycle - which included both The Laramie Project and The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later - was featured in Ohio Schools magazine and in the OutLook Ohio magazine.
NA Theatre has received international recognition for its continued excellence in the theatrical arts, performing its production of The Comedy of Errors at the 2014 American High School Theatre Festival (AHSTF). Held annually during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the world's largest performing arts festival, in Edinburgh, Scotland, AHSTF is a life-changing experience for students that profoundly influences their growth and development in a positive way when they realize their goal of performing a production on an international stage. NA Theatre will be participating in AHSTF again in the summer of 2018.
In the spring of 2015, NA Theatre was again invited to perform at the Ohio Educational Theatre Association's State Thespian Conference, where they re-staged their radical interpretation of Arthur Miller's Cold War polemic The Crucible.
Mr. Lemberg has been an engaged member of the Plain Local Education Association (PLEA), serving as an emerging leader during the 2010 - 2011 school year and as a high school building representative from 2011 - 2015. He was a PLEA delegate to the Ohio Education Association's (OEA) fall and spring representative assemblies from 2010 - 2015. Mr. Lemberg also served as a member of the OEA's GLBT Caucus executive board from 2013 - 2015. He currently mentors the high school's Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) with Mrs. Sarah Shon.
Mr. Lemberg has been very active in the Columbus theatre community. He assistant directed and served as the dramaturg for Short North Stage's production of Die, Mommie, Die in February, 2016 and was also the dramaturg for their next show, The Full Monty. As a member of Short North Stage's Artistic Committee, he helped develop their 2017 - 2018 season. Mr. Lemberg served on the Short North Stage's Board of Directors from August, 2016 - August 2017.
In February of 2017, Mr. Lemberg directed Bleeding Hearts: The Darker Side of Love, which featured original choreography by Melissa Gould, the Artistic Director of New Vision Dance Company, and original scenes by James Thomson, Dustin Spence, and NAHS alumnus Evan Cullinan. Bleeding Hearts was produced by LG Initiative, a production company formed by Ms. Gould and Mr. Lemberg, and performed at the Garden Theater. In March of 2017, Mr. Lemberg directed a staged reading of Larry Kramer's The Normal Heart at the Garden Theatre. The production was profiled on All Sides with Ann Fisher in an episode entitled "HIV/AIDS History and The Normal Heart" on March 16th.
NA Theater has been invited back to the American High School Theatre Festival in 2018. Next summer, Mr. Lemberg will take another talented group of New Albany students to perform a show on an international stage at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Mr. Lemberg lives in Upper Arlington with his partner.