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Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts Appoints Dr. Lee Bynum to Lead Education at Lincoln Center

NEW YORK, NY – (December 12, 2022) – Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts (LCPA) has appointed Dr. Lee Bynum to lead its education work. Dr. Bynum will build upon the organization’s storied history and re-imagine the role of education at Lincoln Center in line with the organization’s commitment to its constituents, equity, and innovation.

Bynum joins Lincoln Center as of February 1, 2023.

“Lee’s work is incredibly inspiring. A rare combination of scholar and practitioner, he has challenged so many to up their game in achieving deep impact and broad connection. We look forward to him bringing his unique abilities to Lincoln Center, to help us all build a rich future by re-imagining it,” said Henry Timms, President and CEO of LCPA.

“Lee is a deeply dedicated advocate for the arts, and a passionate and effective leader connecting artists, communities, and institutions,” said Shanta Thake, Ehrenkranz Chief Artistic Officer of LCPA. “We share the deeply held belief that the arts are central to our society’s well-being. We’re thrilled for Lee to join Lincoln Center.”

Most recently, as Vice President for Impact at Minnesota Opera, Bynum led a transformation of the company’s approach to pedagogy within its classical music curricular initiatives and helped expand the canon to ensure the work of underrepresented creators was featured on its stages. He also led a community commissioning program and introduced opera to a young, diverse audience through The Score podcast.

An accomplished scholar and historian, Bynum’s published research focuses on the contributions of underrepresented people in the arts. His doctoral work at Columbia University explored the history of music education and training of classical musicians of color.

At the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Bynum supported a number of innovative arts education initiatives—including overseeing the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, an international scholar-development program; supporting K-12 music education programs at community music schools, programs to diversify the ranks of museum curatorial staffs, and the creation of arts majors at Spelman and Morehouse Colleges and Johnson C. Smith and Tuskegee Universities; and strategizing with partners in the arts and higher education to develop diversity-related initiatives, including jazz preservation and classical music training programs.

“Arts education is an expansive discipline through which people of all ages and backgrounds engage with lived experiences, personal creativity, and shared stories across community,” said Bynum, incoming Chief Education Officer at LCPA. “I have experienced arts education from a multitude of perspectives – including as a teaching artist in theater and music early in my career – and know we are all strongest when the performing arts are part of our daily

lives. I’m so looking forward to joining Lincoln Center, a place that occupies so much possibility across disciplines and opportunity to craft new narratives.”

About Dr. Lee Bynum
In February 2023, Dr. Lee Bynum will assume the role of Chief Education Officer at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, after previously holding leadership posts at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Minnesota Opera, and Columbia University. Lee also has served on the boards of The Dream Unfinished Orchestra, Luna Composition Lab, American Composers Forum, the Black Feminist Project, Diaspora Community Services, TakeRoot Justice, and as founding artistic director of the Harmony Theatre Company in New York City. Additionally, Lee consults on equitable praxis in the performing arts with Aspen Leadership Group and The Inclusion Firm, and has been invited to speak on these topics by the National Endowment for the Arts, the British Consulate in New York, Opera America, the League of American Orchestras, the Museum of Arts and Design, Flint Institute of Music, the Sphinx Organization, Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles, and the Universities of Hong Kong, Cape Town, California, Puerto Rico, Virginia, and Birmingham (UK). Lee also cohosts The Score, a New York Times-recommended podcast on art and culture from a Black queer perspective. A public historian of classical music, theatre, dance, and popular culture, Lee has published a book chapter, peer-reviewed articles, commentary, and reference works for the university presses of Oxford, Harvard, NYU, and Columbia. An active composer and librettist, Bynum currently is completing two operas, which have been commissioned by companies in the United States and United Kingdom. As a dramaturg, he has collaborated on the development of new works with American Opera Projects, the John Duffy Institute for New Opera, the Herberger Institute for Design and the Arts, Minnesota Opera, Virginia Opera, and Columbia University. Lee received undergraduate and graduate degrees from Columbia University.

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About Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts is the steward of the world’s leading performing arts center, an artistic and civic cornerstone for New York City comprised of eleven resident companies on a 16-acre campus. The nonprofit’s strategic priorities include: supporting the arts organizations that call Lincoln Center home to realize their missions and fostering opportunities for collaboration across campus; championing inclusion and increasing the accessibility and reach of Lincoln Center’s work; and reimagining and strengthening the performing arts for the 21st century and beyond, helping ensure their rightful place at the center of civic life.


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For more information, please contact:
Isabel Sinistore
Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts
[email protected]