Artistic Staff Bios
DJ SALISBURY (Director/Choreographer) has set shows nationwide: Paper Mill Playhouse, Dallas Summer Musicals, Sacramento Music Circus, Lyric Theatre, Ogunquit Playhouse, Riverside Theatre, Musical Theatre West, Orlando Shakespeare Theatre and Off-Broadway (CHIX 6). Favorite directing experiences: Les Misérables (LA’s Scenie Award Best Musical), The Full Monty, Man of La Mancha, Evita and Ragtime. PTC’s production marks his 10th production of The Will Rogers Follies! NYC: Direction for numerous readings and special events including the The Mystery of Edwin Drood revision (starring Sally Struthers), and Disney composer Alan Menken’s Lincoln Center concert. He’s also worked with or alongside Broadway masters Tommy Tune, Jeff Calhoun, Jerry Mitchell, Rupert Holmes and Susan Stroman. TV Choreography: ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars Road Trip” and “The Rachael Ray Show.” As writer: book/lyrics for The Man Who Would Be King, Moonshine and Mistletoe, and the Emmy-winning special starring Reba McIntyre and Vince Gill. Gratitude to Karen for the opportunity and to Ann for the brilliant partnership! www.djsalisbury.com
PHIL RENO (Musical Director/Conductor) has been the music director/conductor for numerous Broadway shows: Something Rotten, Promises, Promises, Elf—The Musical, The Drowsy Chaperone, The Producers, Thou Shalt Not, Dame Edna: The Royal Tour, Dame Edna: Back with a Vengeance and Cats. Off-Broadway: The Diva Is Dismissed (Public), A New Brain (Lincoln Center), Chess (Master Theatre). National Tours: Joseph… (with Donny Osmond), world premiere of Music of the Night, Starlight Express and Bob Fosse’s Sweet Charity. Regional: Minsky’s (pre-Broadway premiere at Ahmanson), How the Grinch Stole Christmas (premiere at the Old Globe), Melissa Manchester’s I Sent a Letter to My Love (premiere at North Shore), Happy Days (premiere at Falcon Theatre). Television: Music director/conductor for “Broadway Under the Stars,” CBS 2002-2006; CBS Tree Lighting in Bryant Park 2006-2013. Film: The Producers. Reno has conducted six original cast albums and has been nominated twice for a Grammy award for his work as a producer of Something Rotten! and The Drowsy Chaperone cast albums.
GEORGE MAXWELL (Set Designer) has been the resident scenic designer at Pioneer Theatre Company for over 25 years and has had the distinct pleasure of designing over 100 productions for the company. Earlier this season, he designed Oliver! for PTC. A few of his favorite PTC designs include Next to Normal, Rent, White Christmas, A Christmas Story, Chicago, Metamorphoses, Enchanted April, Peter Pan, Man of La Mancha, Ain’t Misbehavin’, Miss Saigon, Fiddler on the Roof, A Christmas Carol: The Musical and his sixth production of Noises Off, this time for San Francisco Playhouse. Maxwell has also designed for Utah Opera Company, Alabama Shakespeare Festival and several seasons for the Utah Shakespeare Festival. He is a member of United Scenic Artists. To see more of his work visit http://gmaxwell.weebly.com/
PATRICK HOLT (Costume Designer) Patrick’s recent costume designs have been seen at PTC (Sweet Charity), The Kansas City Repertory Theater (American Buffalo), The Alabama Shakespeare Festival (The Three Musketeers, Peter Pan, West Side Story, As You Like It, Treasure Island) and The Arizona Repertory Theater (Nine, The Man Who Came to Dinner, Inspecting Carol, Julius Caesar, Dracula, Biloxi Blues, Romeo and Juliet). Other work includes The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (Shen Wei Dance Arts), The American Dance Festival, Colorado Shakespeare Festival (A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Richard III, Henry V, Hamlet), John Houseman Theater (Never the Sinner), Public Theater (On the Town), HBO and CBS. He designed the World Premiere productions of Tazewell Thompson’s Constant Star and Romulus Linney’s Gint. He resides in Tucson, Arizona, where he heads the Costume Design Program as an associate professor at the University of Arizona. Member of United Scenic Artists, local 829.
YAEL LUBETSKY (Lighting Designer) has designed numerous productions in New York City and regionally, including the Broadway production of Russell Simmons’ Def Poetry Jam. Most recent designs include the World Premiere of Lisa Lampanlli’s Stuffed at the WP Theater, NYC, and Windfall, directed by Jason Alexander at Arkansas Repertory Theatre. Off-Broadway designs include productions at the Public Theater, Playwrights Horizons, Theatre at St. Clement’s, The Duke, the Cherry Lane Alternative, Intar Theatre, The New Ohio Theatre, The National Yiddish Theatre, and Venture Opera. Regional Theatre designs include productions at Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, Trinity Repertory Theatre, Children’s Theatre Company, Drury Lane, Clarence Brown Theatre, Riverside Theatre and Arkansas Repertory Theatre. She is a recipient of the NEA/TCG Career Development Program for Designers.
JOSHUA C. HIGHT (Sound Designer) A graduate with distinction of London’s Alchemea College of Audio Engineering, Hight comes to PTC with many years of experience in professional audio systems repair and design and has established himself as an exceptional live sound engineer in both London and Salt Lake City. Hight is looking forward to a successful fourth season working in theater design with Pioneer Theatre Company. His other projects of note include working with Sommerset House for the 2012 Olympic Games, and PTC’s Much Ado About Nothing, Deathtrap, Sweet Charity, The Rocky Horror Show, One Man, Two Guvnors, Alabama Story, The Crucible, I Hate Hamlet, The Music Man, Fiddler on the Roof, Outside Mullingar, It Happened One Christmas, Two Dollar Bill, An Inspector Calls, Cowgirls, The Count of Monte Cristo, The Last Ship, The Glass Menagerie, Oliver!, Fences, Women in Jeopardy!, Chess and King Charles III.
AMANDA FRENCH (Hair and Makeup) has been a makeup and hair designer for over 25 years. She has worked for Montana Shakespeare in the Parks, the Utah Shakespeare Festival, Utah Opera, Egyptian Theatre Company and the University of Texas at Austin. She is a contributing writer in the tenth edition of Stage Makeup by Corson, Glavan and Norcross, and her work can also be seen in The Costume Technician’s Handbook by Ingham and Covey, and Wig Making and Styling: A Complete Guide for Theatre and Film by Ruskai and Lowery. She attended the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati where she studied with Hair and Makeup Designer Lenna Kaleva. She is a member of the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT) and a current University of Utah adjunct professor of wigs and makeup.
ANN COOLEY (Associate Director/Choreographer) New York City-based director/choreographer. Highlights: Victor/Victoria (Nat. Tour), The Will Rogers Follies, (Nat. Tour; Music Circus; Arrow Rock, with David Lutken), Merry Go Round with Tom Wopat, Peter Pan and The Little Shop of Horrors (Theatre By the Sea), White Christmas, Damn Yankees, “The Today Show,” Menhattans (Carnegie Hall/Lincoln Center), The Rockettes. Plays: Into the Zone, Disarm, Meth in Method, I Don’t Know, The Big Funk (Nylon Fusion). Devised: Baby Steps, My Man, The Future Freaks Me Out, Protest (Cherry Lane Theatre). Creative Associate/Supervising: The Producers (Nat. Tour), Gypsy and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Sacramento), Annie Get Your Gun (Goodspeed Musicals), Ragtime (Kennedy Center/Broadway), Singin’ in the Rain and 42nd St. (Korea), Chicago, Chix 6! Thanks to DJ, Karen and our fab company!
MANDY MCDONELL (Dance Assistant) is delighted to be working on this project! Past PTC credits: Chess (Assistant Director), Oliver! (Charlotte/Ensemble), The Rocky Horror Show (Ensemble) and Fiddler on the Roof (Chava). Other regional credits include Mary Poppins and The Greenshow with the Utah Shakespeare Festival. She was last seen singing with the Utah Symphony in Jerry Herman: The Broadway Legacy Concert. She is a senior in the University of Utah’s Musical Theatre Program—upon graduating she plans to move to NYC.
PETER STONE (Playwright), 1930-2003, was the first writer to win the Tony, the Oscar and the Emmy. With 15 Broadway productions to his credit, he received Tony Awards for his books for 1776, Woman of the Year, Death Takes a Holiday, The Will Rogers Follies and Titanic (all four also winning the Tony for Best Musical). In 1999, he adapted the book for the Tony winning revival of Annie Get Your Gun. The author of more than two dozen feature films, he won an Academy Award for his screenplay for Father Goose, and the Edgar for his film Charade. Among his other films are The Taking of Pelham 1-2-3, Mirage, Arabesque, Sweet Charity, Skin Game, Who’s Killing the Great Chefs of Europe? and Just Cause. From 1981-1999, Stone was President of The Dramatists Guild, the national society of playwrights, composers and lyricists.
CY COLEMAN (Composer), 1929-2004, Coleman’s winning streak as a Broadway composer began when the team of Coleman and Carolyn Leigh collaborated on the musical Wildcat (1960), which marked the Broadway debut of comedienne Lucille Ball. In 1964, Coleman began collaborating with Dorothy Fields. Their first project was the Broadway smash Sweet Charity. He composed the score for I Love My Wife (1977), and then On the Twentieth Century (1978) with Betty Comden and Adolph Green. In 1980, Coleman served as producer and composer for the circus-themed Barnum. Later in the decade, he collaborated on Welcome to the Club (1988) and City of Angels (1989). The 1990s brought two more new hit Cy Coleman musicals: The Will Rogers Follies (1991), again with Comden and Green, and The Life (1997). In addition, he composed scores for memorable television specials for Shirley MacLaine, Bob Hope, and Peggy Lee. Cy Coleman has received numerous awards, including Grammys, Tonys, Emmys and an Oscar nomination.
ADOLPH GREEN and BETTY COMDEN (Lyricists), 1915-2002 and 1917-2006, respectively, were an American musical-comedy team who wrote scripts—and often the lyrics—for many Broadway shows and Hollywood film musicals. They were paired together longer than any other writing team in the history of Broadway.
Comden studied dramatics at NYU. Green found his first job as a Wall Street runner. Comden and Green met in 1938 while both were making the rounds of theatrical agents. The Village Vanguard, a bohemian nightclub in Greenwich Village, was seeking a new show; and the group that became known as The Revuers stepped in—Comden, Green, Judy Tuvim, Alvin Hammer and John Frank.
In 1944, Comden and Green joined with composer Leonard Bernstein and choreographer Jerome Robbins in creating the musical On the Town, which later was filmed by MGM. In 1951, with Two on the Aisle, Comden and Green began their long collaboration with composer Jule Styne, who created the music for most of their shows, including Peter Pan (1954), Bells Are Ringing (1956), Say, Darling (1958), Do Re Mi (1960), Subways Are for Sleeping (1961), Fade Out–Fade In (1964), Hallelujah, Baby! (1967) and Lorelei (1974).
Comden and Green wrote another musical with Bernstein, Wonderful Town (1953), which won them their first Tony Award; they won six others, for Hallelujah, Baby!, Applause (1970), On the Twentieth Century (1978) and The Will Rogers Follies (1991). They also wrote several film scripts, including that of Auntie Mame (1958) and Singin’ in the Rain (1952), the latter of which was voted the best film musical of all time by the American Film Institute. Among their best-known songs are “Just in Time” and “The Party’s Over.” In 1980 Comden and Green were named to the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
This production is sponsored by:
Marriner S. Eccles Foundation
S.J. and Jessie E. Quinney Foundation