Les Owen began his career not in film but as a professional musician in his hometown of Richmond, VA, where he graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a Bachelor of Music Education and a Master of Music in saxophone.
In 1983, Les became a saxophonist with The United States Army Field Band at Ft Meade, MD, traveling extensively with their renowned “Jazz Ambassadors” as a featured jazz soloist, vocalist, and educator.
In 1989 Les became involved with the film and video production industry working as a camera operator, producer, writer and music composer for a media production company in the Washington, D.C area.
Les’s background in the military led him to focus on film projects about military bands and soldier-musicians. In addition to producing many live concert performances and training videos he also began producing documentaries of military band missions to foreign countries including missions by the 257th Army Band of the District of Columbia National Guard to Greece, Crete and The Virgin Isles in the early 1990s.
In 1992, Les joined The United States Army Band “Pershing’s Own” in Washington, D.C. where he served in multiple capacities as saxophonist, announcer and producer. Outside of his assigned duties, he began producing film projects for the organization which were used for multi-media inter-active live performances, marketing, and archival purposes. This included a notable documentary of the band’s 2004 USO mission to Kuwait, Iraq and Afghanistan.
It was in 2005, while on active duty as a Master Sergeant in “Pershing’s Own,” that Les began his own production companies, LDO Video and Treehouse Dreams Films, and began producing commercials, television pilots, music videos, short films, and documentaries. His work gained recognition as his projects began receiving some critical acclaim.
In 2012, The Army Band created the full time position of Unit Video Producer and awarded the job to Les. Continuing his active duty service, he initiated and produced a steady stream of film and video projects. Notable productions include a documentary/diary of The Army Band’s participation in the Norwegian Tattoo in Oslo, Norway; "The Bugler’s Statue: Capturing a Moment", a documentary about the creation of the Army Band Bugler’s statue now on prominent display in the Arlington National Cemetery Visitors Center; "In China", a film chronicling the band’s 2012 visit to China and their collaborative tour with the People’s Liberation Army Band, A film which is considered by many to be a valuable tool promoting good will between the governments and militaries of China and the United States; and the original short film, "Sons of Soldiers", which was an official selection to the 2013-14 G.I. Film Festival in Los Angeles.