Artistic Director of the
African-American Shakespeare Company

A lot of the credit, says Enoch King, goes to

director L. Peter Callender:

“He’s very accommodating. We call him an actor’s director.

I mean, he’s an actor,

so he completely understands our processes,

and he’s always respectful of them.”

Excerpt from Catalyst article


"And the results, not surprisingly, are an amazing thing to behold.

L. Peter Callender’s flawless direction and his powerfully talented cast make “Skeleton Crew” the perfect New Year opener." 

Peter Balaskas, Splash Magazine

Skeleton Crew pic 5.jpg

American Stage

"So I leave it to you to answer the original question for yourself. Is Dominique Morrisseau’s work comparable to August Wilson’s? With direction and a cast like the one I saw perform Skeleton Crew,

I say……. Hell yes!."

Cindy Stovall, Beauty & the Burg

Jan-Feb 2020

"Don't be left out in the cold with this one, if Tampa Bay could send a show to Broadway even for a limited engagement this show would win a Tony for best revival.

A hard hitting feat of grandeur I did not see coming,

but I'm sure glad I did.."

Drew Eberhard, Broadway World


"[This] production of Macbeth reimagines the tragic "Scottish play" as the bitter and wildly mutinous dream sequence of a homeless American Veteran. ... The company and production both offer much to think about and learn from. Do not miss this production."

Daryanna Lancet, DailyCal

MACBETH_Photo_ Joseph Giammarco.jpg

African-American Shakes

"Director L. Peter Callender's vision for this classic story of ambition and betrayal is thrillingly modern and dystopian. ... Exciting and inventive, Callender and company are to be congratulated for bringing this classic play to modern resonance" -

Robert Sokol, SF Examiner

July 2019

Directed by L. Peter Callender,  [AASC]'s noble, fearless, and always compelling artistic director, the classic story suggests the greatest menace to human life is not an external force, but the uncaring, unkind impulse lurking within all of us. ... Make the journey and save your soul."

Lou Fancher, East Bay Express


"Like the Tuskegee airmen, we are forced to question the righteousness and justice of every American war. “Black Eagles” recaptures Black History and makes it live."

Robert M. Gardner, Theatrius

BLACK EAGLES _ Photo_ Joseph Giammarco

African-American Shakes

"Like a wise and compassionate commanding officer, director L. Peter Callender coaxes the individual stories into the spotlight, drawing emotionally honest performances from a cast with variable performance skills." 

Robert Sokol, SF Examiner

Mar 2019

"One has the mistaken impression that one of the simplest things to portray as an actor is drunkenness. Wrong.  These talented actors under Callender’s superb direction, slowly, gradually and naturally grew more inebriated as the scene progressed while maintaining their characters."

Gaetana Caldwell-Smith, For All Events


"Directed by L. Peter Callender, the play is a taut, rhythmic exploration of what happens when parents are stressed, educators feel threatened, and students are misunderstood."

J.A. Jones, Weekly Challenger

"Director L. Peter Callender clearly understands the complexities and frailties of human interaction..."

Keven Renken, Creative Pinellas

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American Stage

"From superb direction, an exceptionally-cast ensemble to seamless set changes, perfect costumes, lighting and sound, this is a show that won’t leave you and maybe- actually not maybe – the truth is – it shouldn’t."

Deborah Bostock-Kelley, Groove Magazine

"The matchup of L. Peter Callender and American Stage is one made in theatrical heaven."

William S. Oser, Talkin' Broadway

Jan-Feb 2019

"Morisseau...writes in tight scenes, each with a clear purpose. Callender...has a knack for distilling that purpose and getting actors to evoke it."

Andrew Meachan, Tampa Bay Times

"And under the flawless direction of L. Peter Callender, “Pipeline” continues to maintain American Stages’ track record as a regional theater with a perfect 2018/2019 season…so far."

Peter Balaskas, Splash Magazines


"African-American Shakespeare’s lusty, furious ‘Streetcar’ belongs to all of us."

Lily Janiak, SF Chronicle

STREETCAR _ Blanche_ Jemier Jenkins _ Ph

African-American Shakes

"The African-American Shakespeare Company gives a stronger production, with director L. Peter Callender offering a fresh and impressively witty approach to the life of Blanche DuBois."

Sophie Kim, The Daily Californian

Mar 2018

"Director Callender offers a brilliant and painful lesson about listening respectfully to women. His Streetcar (1947) mixes brilliant acting, handfuls of unexpected laughter, a tablespoon of torment, and a cup of tragedy."

Gilad Barach, Theatrius


"Director L. Peter Callender shows his mastery with the pacing of the play and bringing ALL the actors to shine in their own glory, from the lead actors to the cameos."

Peter Balaskas, Splash Magazines

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American Stage

"L. Peter Callender has crafted a production that understands and embraces every nuance in the script, with tensions that rise and fall musically."

Andrew Meacham, Tampa Bay Times

Jan-Feb 2018

"Director L. Peter Callender, guided American Stage's last two very powerful August Wilson plays; it's safe to say that he has outdone himself here. This is one beautiful production from a classic script, and everything comes together."

Peter Nason, Broadway World St Petersburg


"Wilson's characters are rich, complex, delightful and engaging in and of themselves, but the magic is in their interaction."

Christine Okon, Theater & Such


African-American Shakes

"It is not surprising I had an excellent evening at the African-American Shakespeare Company's production of August Wilson's 'Jitney', directed by and starring our own top-flight

L. Peter Callender."

Irene Nelson, Theatrius

Mar 2017

"What the production, directed with brilliance by the company's artistic director L. Peter Callender, gets right is the ambience and camaraderie of these varied lives set against the backdrop of the threat of gentrification."

David John Chavez, Bay Area Plays


"Director L. Peter Callender has pulled together a bouquet of moments to savor, too many of them to come from the actors alone."

Andrew Meacham, Tampa Bay Times

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American Stage

"As he proved in last year's Jitney, director L. Peter Callender 

understands August Wilson like no other. He is an artist who knows how to stage a scene to

maximum effect."

Peter Nason, Broadway World

Jan 2017

"L. Peter Callender’s flawless direction makes the experience seem like a passionate, mercurial evening of watching a dynamic jazz ensemble, with each artist bellowing their own

harmonic solo."

Peter A. Balaskas, Splash Magazines 

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"Director L. Peter Callender keeps the tension high throughout the production."

Sam Hurwitt, The Mercury News

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Aurora Theatre

"The Kentucky of "Safe House" is a dangerous place. directed by L. Peter Callender..., the actors inhabit their roles with urgency."

Georgia Rowe, SF Examiner

Nov 2016

"As skillfully directed by

L. Peter Callender, the drama unfolds grippingly.

Each character is clearly defined."

Judy Richter, For All Events


"The terrifying relevance of the piece,...and the sharpness of L. Peter Callender's production, makes this 'Presentation' so memorable."

Karen D'Souza, Mecury News

San Jose Stage

"We Are Proud' offers two remarkable spectacles, first being that it's directed by L. Peter Callender, who clearly spent a lot of time pushing his actors."

Adam Brinklow, Edge Media Network

Oct 2016

"Directed by L. Peter Callender, the play gives a deep insight into the layered conversation that exists about race and subjective and deep feelings people

have in society."

Darshana Varia Nadkarni's Blog


"This production is excellent, quite possibly the best presentation of an August Wilson play I have seen by this company. I am sure that much of the credit needs to go to director L. Peter Callender."

William S. Oser, Talkin' Broadway

American Stage

"Sometimes the theater puts you in the presence of characters so captivating, you don't want the experience to end. ... 

Deftly directed by

L. Peter Callender, these nine figures are funny, admirable, dangerous, misunderstood, wounded, dream-struck, decent and implacable."

Mark Lieb, CL Tampa Bay

Jan 2016

"A show like this cannot succeed without the guiding hand of director L. Peter Callender. His obvious love for Wilson shows through every scene, every moment of humor, every heartbreaking monologue. The show is beautifully staged, the pacing is spot on, and the acting is as strong as it gets."

Peter Nason, Broadway

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African-American Shakes

May 2014

 "Under the expertly imaginative hand of L. Peter Callender,

[Much Ado's] rich plot of twists and turns ...gains momentum from beginning to end."

Click here for a clip of the show


African-American Shakes

June 2012


"Raisin in the Sun gets brilliant revival in San Francisco."

Click here to see an interview



African-American Shakes

Jan 2013

"[L. Peter Callender]'s staging brings audience members a sense of full, unflinching intimacy."

Adam Brinklow, Edge

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African-American Shakes

April 2011

 "Callender makes sure...the outlines of every character and the story [of Twelfth Night] are vivid, and the comedy shines through at every level..."

Robert Hurwitt, SF Chronicle


African-American Shakes

Feb 2016


"A vibrant new production of [George C. Wolfe's

The Colored Museum]..."

Chloe Veltman, KQED


African-American Shakes

June 2017

"[AASC is always interesting. Come see this production..."


Dec 2013

African-American Shakes

"Sassy, spirited 'Cinderella'"



Feb 2005

Solano College,

Harbor Theater 



Summer 2000

Word For Word

France Tour 


© 2020 L. Peter Callender | developed by CogentOAK 

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