O'Neill appoints John McDaniel cabaret director

John McDaniel
John McDaniel

Waterford – The Eugene O'Neill Theater Center has appointed Grammy and two-time Emmy Award winner John McDaniel as artistic director of the Cabaret & Performance Conference, which will take place July 31 to August 10, 2013.

The conference focuses on developing new artists and forms for cabaret theater, and closes the O'Neill professional summer season of new work annually.

A conductor, pianist, composer, orchestrator, and record producer, McDaniel led the band daily on "The Rosie O'Donnell Show" for its
six-year run.

His recent Broadway credits include "Bonnie & Clyde," for which he received a Drama Desk nomination for Best Orchestrations, "Catch Me If You Can" and "Brooklyn," which he also
orchestrated and produced.

McDaniel was the supervising music director of the Broadway revival of "Annie Get Your Gun," starring Bernadette Peters (and subsequently Reba McEntire), which won the 1999
Tony Award for Best Revival of a Musical and for which he received the Grammy Award as producer for Best Musical Show Album. He also was the supervising music director for Boy
George's "Taboo" on Broadway in 2003, and produced the cast album. He conducted the hit "Chicago" on Broadway.

His musical adaptation of "Pirates!" has played the Goodspeed Opera House, among other theaters.

O'Neill Executive Director Preston Whiteway said, "I am truly thrilled to welcome John to the O'Neill and excited for his leadership of the Cabaret & Performance Conference. John's unique talents as both an artist and a producer give him the vision to lead our program and to excite his fellow artists and our local and national audience. I can't wait for August."

The Cabaret & Performance Conference, first formed in 1989 as the Cabaret Symposium and re-launched in 2005, has featured luminaries such as Margaret Whiting, Julie Wilson, Leslie Uggams, Penny Fuller, and provided vital developmental opportunities to "[title of show]" and "The Story of My Life." Additionally, throughout its history, nearly 250 aspiring cabaret artists have spent 10 days in the Conference honing their skills and launching their careers.

"I have been deeply fond of the Cabaret art form ever since my father took me to Bobby Short's performance at the Café Carlyle when I was in school. I was instantly hooked!" says McDaniel. "I look forward to jumping into the sandbox at the O'Neill, creating a vibrant and compelling season for next summer."

The Cabaret Junior Fellows program will continue under Music Director Brad Simmons. Junior Fellows develops cabaret performance skills of teenagers, integrating their curriculum into the broader Cabaret and Performance Conference.

Further details on the Conference, including the schedule, will be released in the spring.


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