Kjersten Lester-Moratzka

Costume TechnologySchool of Design and Production
O: 336-770-1359
Kjersten Lester-Moratzka

So much deep learning comes from experiential moments, trial and error, getting your hands dirty and going for it. My goal is to create a classroom environment where students can feel free to jump into the doing. A lot of my specific craft, as it is across the arts, has survived throughout the generations through the classic apprenticeship model. My teaching style is an extension of that model into the modern era.

Exposing them to the sheer volume of opportunities during their time at UNCSA sets their training on a level largely unsurpassed in this country.  Because we have the resources and scale of operations, they can work with materials, techniques, mediums and genres most colleges and universities simply cannot approach.  Our students are also tasked with taking on leadership roles throughout the production structure, meaning at the time of graduation they are ready to launch their careers with a fuller understanding of how to find their place in the work world.


  • Professional Internships: Desmond Heeley, John Lee Beatty
  • Coursework: Century College, St Paul MN – garment production (pattern drafting, draping, grading)

Career Highlights

  • Working with internationally recognized designers on a regular basis, including: Leslie Travers, Laurent Pelly, Paul Brown, Anne Hould Ward, Jane Greenwood, Tobias Hoheisel, Kevin Knight, Allen Moyer, Martin Pakledinaz, Constance Hoffman, Jon Morrell, Adrian Linford and Tom Ford.
  • Working with internationally renowned Opera singers on a regular basis, including: Susanna Phillips, Susan Graham, Natalie Dessay, Patricia Racette, Christine Brewer, Meredith Arwady, Ana Maria Martinez, Erin Morley, Erin Wall, Ailyn Perez, Heidi Stober, Kelly Kaduce, and Michaela Martens.
  • Coming back to North Carolina to join the faculty of UNCSA
  • Seeing my students graduate and have amazing careers
  • Getting to do what I love and be paid for it

Awards, Recognitions and Honors

  • Principal womens draper, The Santa Fe Opera
  • Freelance draper for a variety of venues such as The Metropolitan Opera and Broadway


M.F.A. Costume TechnologyUNC School of the Arts

B.A. History, Art MinorFramingham State College