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Michael Unger

 
Bio:
Michael is a theatre and opera director whose work has been seen on stages from Los Angeles, to Chicago, to New York, to Yekaterinburg, Russia – and many places in between. He is the new Artistic Director of Skylight Music Theatre in Milwaukee, WI. Previously, he was the Associate Artistic ... (read complete bio)
 

Bio:
Michael is a theatre and opera director whose work has been seen on stages from Los Angeles, to Chicago, to New York, to Yekaterinburg, Russia – and many places in between. He is the new Artistic Director of Skylight Music Theatre in Milwaukee, WI. Previously, he was the Associate Artistic ... (read complete bio)

Stage Credits

Productions

 
[Off-Broadway, 2017]
Director
 
[Off-Broadway, 2016]
Director
 
[Arlington, VA (Regional), 2008]
Director
 
[New York, 2005]
Director
 
[New York, 2004]
Director
 
[New York, 2004]
Director
 
[Broadway, 1997]
Assistant Director

Photos

Nathaniel Unger, Janet Metz, Michael Unger and Phoebe Unger Photo

Nathaniel Unger, Janet Metz, Michael Unger and Phoebe Unger

From: 
Date:
04/09/2019
David Hancock Turner, Michael Leeds,
Evan Harrington, Anne L. Nathan, Timothy John Sm Photo

David Hancock Turner, Michael Leeds, Evan Harrington, Anne L. Nathan, Timothy John Smith, MaryJoanna Grisso, Antonio Cipriano, Andréa Burns, Joey Sorge, James Morgan, Michael Unger

From: 
Date:
01/24/2019
Susan Stroman, Michael Unger Photo

Susan Stroman, Michael Unger

From: 
Date:
11/15/2018

 

Stage

Productions

[Off-Broadway, 2017]
Director

[Off-Broadway, 2016]
Director

[Arlington, VA (Regional), 2008]
Director

[New York, 2005]
Director

[New York, 2004]
Director

[New York, 2004]
Director

[Broadway, 1997]
Assistant Director

Michael Unger Biography

Michael is a theatre and opera director whose work has been seen on stages from Los Angeles, to Chicago, to New York, to Yekaterinburg, Russia – and many places in between. He is the new Artistic Director of Skylight Music Theatre in Milwaukee, WI. Previously, he was the Associate Artistic Director and Director of Education of Off-Broadway’s The York Theatre in New York City. He is also the Producing Artistic Director of NewArts which brings high-level performing arts education and programming to the resilient community of Newtown, CT. NewArts uses the performing arts as a vehicle for healing and promoting creativity, collaboration and community – to give children tools for their future.

For NewArts, Michael has produced and directed twelve large-scale musicals involving over 550 children onstage, backstage and in the orchestra: Matilda (upcoming, Summer 2019), Newsies, Seussical: The Musical starring John Tartaglia and 84 Newtown children, the world premiere of A ROCKIN’ Midsummer Night’s Dream (co-adapted with composer, Eric Svejcar – CD available on Broadway Records), Disney’s The Lion King, Jr., Liberty Smith and The 101 Dalmatians Musical (co-adapted with Dennis DeYoung – of Styx) featuring 107 Newtown kids, School of Rock, The Wizard of Oz, Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and A Christmas Carol. Michael also directed From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert for Sandy Hook (CD and DVD available) to raise support, awareness and funds for Newtown, CT. This concert, which was televised on PBS, amassed a corps of 700 volunteers, including Stephen Schwartz, Marc Shaiman, Frank Wildhorn, Linda Eder, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Michael Cerveris, Mary Testa, Nikki Blonsky, Richard Kind, Janet Metz, Christine Ebersole, Capathia Jenkins, Micky Dolenz and the casts of “Sister Act,” “Million Dollar Quartet” and “Sesame Street” and, most important, 100 Newtown and Sandy Hook kids on stage performing with their Broadway heroes – and 350 Sandy Hook Elementary School students on video. It was a remarkable evening of healing in action.


He also directed From Broadway With Love: A Benefit Concert for Parkland – which brought Broadway and Hollywood stars to Florida in support of the horrendous shooting at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School. Performers included Rachel Bloom, Matthew Morrison, Deborah Cox, Noah Galvin, Christy Altomare, Donna Lynn Champlin, George Salazar, and many others, in addition to over 100 local shool children. He also co-directed his production of A ROCKIN’ Midsummer Night’s Dream with Special Tony Award recipient, Melody Herzfeld, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in the spring of 2019.

He recently directed The York Theatre’s Oscar Hammerstein Award honoring Susan Stroman, hosted by Matthew Broderick, which included a cast of 60 recreating some of “Stro’s” greatest hits as well as appearances by Richard Maltby, Jr., David Shire, Lynn Ahrens, Sierra Boggess, Nick Cordero, Stephen Flaherty, John Kander, William Ivey Long, Terrence Mann, Debra Monk, Brad Oscar, Laura Osnes, Bryonha Marie Parham, Tiler Peck, David Thompson, Kaley Ann Voorhees, John Weidman, Tony Yazbeck, and Karen Ziemba.

He directed You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown (Off Brodway at The York Theatre Company) – the first professional production of that musical to involve all Broadway-level child performers – available on CD, Donald Margulies’ Time Stands Still at Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theatre (Cape Cod Chronicle best of 2015) and Tennessee Williams’ Period of Adjustment at Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theatre and The Provincetown Tennessee Williams Festival, the new play, Two Point Oh at 59E59 Theaters (New York Times Critics’ Pick) and the musical Big (starring John Tartaglia, Kerry Butler and lyricist, Richard Maltby, Jr.) for the The York Theatre’s Mufti series.

Other directing credits include: A Christmas Carol (McCarter Theatre – from 1998 – 2015 – designed by Ming Cho Lee with choreography by Rob Ashford), My Sister in this House (Deaf West – new version – Ovation Recommended), Grease (Paramount Theatre), Crimes of the Heart (Theatre Aspen), The Mikado, Kiss Me Kate and Pippin (Depot Theatre), Knickerbocker Holiday (York Theatre – Mufti Series), Paul Scott Goodman’s Tiny Dancer (Prince Music Theatre) and, upon the request of composer, John Kander, new versions of The Happy Time (Signature Theatre, DC) and The Rink starring Leslie Uggams and Janet Metz (Cape Playhouse).
World premieres include The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Barrington Stage Company), Caligula, (NYMF- Winner: Best of the Fest), Retribution (Off-Broadway, Lambs Theatre), La Gioconda (Off Broadway – Clurman Theatre), Haven (University of Judiasm), Retribution (Off-Broadway, Lambs Theatre).

Opera directing credits include D’Albert’s Tiefland, his seventh, at Sarasota Opera (DVD coming out on Naxos Classical), Floyd’s Of Mice and Men, Ward’s The Crucible, Puccini’s La rondine, Mascagni’s L’amico Fritz, Barber’s Vanessa, and Strauss’ Die Fledermaus at the Sarasota Opera Company, The Magic Flute (Nominated for Best Director and Best Musical – Theatre Tampa Bay Awards) and Floyd’s Susannah (DVD available on Naxos Classical) at St. Petersburg Opera, Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore and Menotti’s The Consul at Opera NJ, William Bolcom’s opera of Arthur Miller’s A View From the Bridge for Vertical Player Repertory and Kalman’s The Duchess of Chicago at the Sverdlovsk Academic Theatre of Musical Comedy in Yekaterinburg, Russia (still running).

Other directing credits include Noises Off (New Harmony), Meet Me In St. Louis (The MUNY), Triumph of Love and School For Wives (The Weston Playhouse), Changes of Heart (Barrington Stage – BRAVO Award), On The Razzle (Babcock Theatre, Salt Lake Cuty), In Perpetuity Throughout the Universe (Juilliard), Still (World Premiere), Les fiances de Loche, Les Liaisons Dangereuses and The Game of Love and Chance (French language productions), Cries From the Mammal House (American Premiere), Cleavage and Smokes (Mark Taper Forum – NWF) and Taming of the Shrew (Complex Theatre, LA). He also produced the Richard Rodgers Award winning, Whatnot, at Musical Theatre Works.


Michael teaches acting classes in New York City and has directed Love’s Fire at the Asolo Conservatory as well as Love’s Labour’s Lost, Dancing at Lughnasa, The Three Sisters, Joking Apart, Buried Child and Boy Gets Girl at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. He has also directed three musical showcases at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy.


Michael has also directed several evenings at the Cooper Union to celebrate the sesquicentennial of The Great Hall. Performers included Tony Kushner, Mario Cuomo, Salman Rushdie, Olympia Dukakis, David Strathairn, Richard Dreyfuss, Stephen Lang, Kathleen Chalfant, Amy Goodman, Adam Gopnik, Harold Varmus and Harold Holzer.


Readings include the The Children’s Revolt for composer, Gershon Kingsley’s (of “Popcorn” fame) 95th birthday, Liberty Smith, Mystery of the Dancing Princesses (National Alliance of Musical Theatre), Christina Alberta’s Father (National Music Theatre Network), Water From The Moon (Education Alliance Center) and at the York Theatre: Misia, Dance On The Rooftops, Summer of ’42 and Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus.


Broadway assistant directing credits include: King David, A Christmas Carol (Madison Square Garden (’96, ‘97) and, alongside Susan Stroman, the first reading of The Night They Raided Minsky’s for the late, Mike Ockrent; Buried Child for Gary Sinise (Steppenwolf Theatre/Broadway); and Steel Pier for Scott Ellis. Off-Broadway assistant directing credits include Sam Shepard’s Eyes For Consuela (Manhattan Theatre Club) for Terry Kinney and Closer Than Ever (The Cherry Lane) for Richard Maltby, Jr.


At Steppenwolf Theatre in his hometown of Chicago, Michael assistant directed A Clockwork Orange for Terry Kinney and Buried Child for Gary Sinise. Film and television assisting credits include Picket Fences, HBO’s Truman, Albino Alligator, and Ransom.

He is married to actress Janet Metz and his favorite productions are their twins, Phoebe and Nathaniel.




Michael Unger News

Emmy, Tony, Grammy & SAG Award Nominee Norm Lewis to Headline Skylight Night 2022 Photo Emmy, Tony, Grammy & SAG Award Nominee Norm Lewis to Headline Skylight Night 2022
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Sep 14, 2022

Acclaimed stage and screen actor Norm Lewis will headline Skylight Night 2022, an annual fundraiser supporting Skylight Music Theatre. It will be held on Saturday, October 29, 2022, in the main ballroom of the Woman’s Club of Wisconsin.

Leslie Uggams and Ted Chapin to be Honored at the 30th Annual Oscar Hammerstein Award Photo Leslie Uggams and Ted Chapin to be Honored at the 30th Annual Oscar Hammerstein Award Gala
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Sep 12, 2022

The York Theatre Company will honor Tony Award-winning musical theater icon Leslie Uggams (Hallelujah, Baby!, Anything Goes, Thoroughly Modern Millie) with the 2022 Oscar Hammerstein Award for Outstanding Achievement in Musical Theater and Ted Chapin with The York Theatre Company Founders’ Award at the 30th Oscar Hammerstein Award Gala.

Sophia Anne Caruso & Lea Salonga to Lead Workshop of New Frank Wildhorn Musical THE S Photo Sophia Anne Caruso & Lea Salonga to Lead Workshop of New Frank Wildhorn Musical THE SONG OF BERNADETTE
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Sep 9, 2022

The new Frank Wildhorn musical, 'The Song of Bernadette,' will begin a New York City workshop this week. The workshop stars Sophie Anne Caruso and Lea Salonga.

Cast Announced for MAMMA MIA! Opening Skylight Music Theatre's 2022-23 Season Photo Cast Announced for MAMMA MIA! Opening Skylight Music Theatre's 2022-23 Season
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Aug 29, 2022

Skylight Music Theatre has announced the full cast for the smash hit musical Mamma Mia! running from September 23 – October 16, 2022. Performances take place in the beautiful Cabot Theatre at the Broadway Theatre Center.

Skylight Music Theatre Announces New One Night Only Concerts Photo Skylight Music Theatre Announces New One Night Only Concerts
by Stephi Wild - Aug 15, 2022

Skylight Music Theatre today announced a new series, One Night Only Concerts. These events feature guest artists performing special one-time-only shows covering a wide range of styles. The series kicks off this fall with three performances showcasing the iconic music of some of the best-known names in pop music.

University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Shares Fall 2022 Schedule Of P Photo University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music Shares Fall 2022 Schedule Of Performances And Public Events
by A.A. Cristi - Aug 12, 2022

Audiences are invited to return to the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music's (CCM) concert halls and theaters to experience world-class performances and presentations by the next generation of performing and media artists!

Creative Team Announced for MAMMA MIA! at Skylight Music Theatre Photo Creative Team Announced for MAMMA MIA! at Skylight Music Theatre
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Aug 10, 2022

Skylight Music Theatre has announced the creative team for the smash hit musical Mamma Mia! running from September 23 – October 16, 2022. Performances take place in the Cabot Theatre at the Broadway Theatre Center.

One Day Sale Announced For Regional Premiere Of A JOLLY HOLIDAY At Skylight Music The Photo One Day Sale Announced For Regional Premiere Of A JOLLY HOLIDAY At Skylight Music Theatre
by A.A. Cristi - Jul 20, 2022

Skylight Music Theatre has announced a one-day sale on Monday, July 25 for A Jolly Holiday: Celebrating Disney's Broadway Hits, running November 18 – December 31, 2022. Performances take place in the beautiful Cabot Theatre at the Broadway Theatre Center, 158 N. Broadway, in Milwaukee's Historic Third Ward. Skylight is Milwaukee's professional Equity music theatre company. 

Skylight Music Theatre is Seeking Youth Performers for A JOLLY HOLLIDAY - CELEBRATING Photo Skylight Music Theatre is Seeking Youth Performers for A JOLLY HOLLIDAY - CELEBRATING DISNEY'S BROADWAY HITS
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Jul 6, 2022

Skylight Music Theatre is accepting video submissions for non-union youth performers between the ages of 9-13 for A Jolly Holiday: Celebrating Disney’s Broadway Hits to be presented November 18 – December 31, 2022.

Skylight Music Theatre Announces Early Career Professional Internship Program Photo Skylight Music Theatre Announces Early Career Professional Internship Program
by Chloe Rabinowitz - Jun 15, 2022

Skylight Music Theatre today announced a new Early Career Professional Internship Program for the 2022-2023 season. The ECP program is now accepting applications for performers, technicians, and a candidate interested in directing, who will perform integral functions on and off stage at Skylight.

Michael Unger Videos

VIDEO: Watch Liz Callaway, Norm Lewis & More Tribute Maltby & Shire at Oscar Hammerst VideoVIDEO: Watch Liz Callaway, Norm Lewis & More Tribute Maltby & Shire at Oscar Hammerstein Award Gala
by BroadwayWorld TV - Nov 5, 2021

Earlier this week, the York Theatre Company honored musical theater legends Richard Maltby, Jr. & David Shire with the 2021 Oscar Hammerstein Award for Lifetime Achievement in Musical Theater and Elisa Loti Stein with The York Theatre Company Founders' Award at the 29th Oscar Hammerstein Award Gala.

BWW TV: The Kid Critics Meet the Peanuts Gang at YOU'RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN
by BroadwayWorld TV - Jun 19, 2016

It's not hard to stumble across an excess of reviews for any given Broadway show these days, but there is a group of theatregoers that is wildly underrepresented when it comes to opinions on Broadway- kids! BroadwayWorld continues our new series, KID CRITICS, which gives parents and children alike a kid's perspective on Broadway's hottest shows. We are continuing the series with Tai (9), Isabella (11), and Charles (8), who just stopped by York Theatre Company's YOU'RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN. Curious of what they thought about the show? Find out below!

BWW TV: The Comical Kids of YOU'RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN Give a Sneak Peek!
by BroadwayWorld TV - May 19, 2016

The York Theatre Company, in association with Van Dean, Tony Heyes/Mia Moravis and Sister Productions presents YOU'RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN, with book, music and lyrics by Clark Gesner and additional material by Andrew Lippa and Michael Mayer. BroadwayWorld brings you a preview of the cast in action below!

STAGE TUBE: John Tartaglia Talks Newtown's SEUSSICAL
by Stage Tube - Aug 14, 2013

In the video below, Tartaglia and students from the production chat with 'CBS This Morning' about the importance of the performance to the community. Check it out below!

BWW TV: BWW Talks LIMELIGHT with Composer Christopher Curtis
by Audra Stafford - Oct 15, 2010

On Tuesday, September 7, LIMELIGHT: THE STORY OF Charlie Chaplin opened at the La Jolla's Mandell Weiss Theatre. The production, which has music and lyrics by Christopher Curtis and a book by Christopher Curtis and Thomas Meehan, runs through October 17, 2010. The show is directed by Michael Unger and stars Rob McClure and Ashley Brown. BroadwayWorld reporter Audra Stafford recently spoke with Curtis about all things LIMELIGHT and what inspired him to write a musical about the comedic legend.

STAGE TUBE: LIMELIGHT Opens at La Jolla Playhouse
by BroadwayWorld TV - Sep 15, 2010

On Tuesday, September 7, LIMELIGHT: THE STORY OF Charlie Chaplin opened at the La Jolla's Mandell Weiss Theatre. The production, which has music and lyrics by Christopher Curtis and a book by Christopher Curtis and Thomas Meehan, runs through October 17, 2010. The show is directed by Michael Unger and stars Rob McClure and Ashley Brown.