Louise Lester joined the artistic staff of Houston Ballet as ballet mistress in April 2004. Born in Yorkshire, England, Ms. Lester received her ballet training at The Royal Ballet School, White Lodge in London, and then graduated to the Upper School. In 1972, she joined the corps de ballet of Bavarian State Ballet in Munich, Germany. Shortly thereafter, Ms. Lester was promoted to principal dancer, performing the classical, neo-classical, and contemporary repertory. She had the great opportunity to work with a wide range of choreographers, including John Cranko, Peter Wright, Glen Tetley, Hans van Manen, Jirí Kylián, Rudi van Dantzig, William Forsythe, and Ohad Naharin. After an enjoyable career as a dancer she became ballet mistress for Bavarian State Ballet, where she remained until 1996.
In 1996, she began working as a guest teacher and coach with companies such as La Scala Ballet de Milano, Royal Danish Ballet, The Cullberg Ballet, Ballet du Rhin, Ballet du Nord, Staatsballett Hannover, Teatro Colón Buenos Aires, and Teatro Comunale Florence. Ms. Lester also staged several ballets for major companies, including Peter Wright’s production of The Sleeping Beauty at the Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires, and Teatro Municipal Santiago de Chile; John Neumeier’s production of The Nutcracker at the Semperoper Dresden in Germany; George Balanchine’s Serenade at the Teatro Municipal Santiago de Chile; and Concerto Barroco for the Ballet du Rhin in France. She was the assistant to the director of the Teatro Municipal Santiago de Chile from 2000 to 2003.