Martin Kaye Biography
Birth Place: Manchester, UK
Born in Manchester, England, Martin Kaye is a songwriter, pianist, singer and all-round show-man. From as early as he can remember, he has always been creating music and performing. He would seek out every musical opportunity he could find, with the help of his extrovert grandmother and boogie-woogie playing father. It began with singing lessons at three years old, and piano lessons at seven. Local youth theatre groups held auditions for musicals, and this is where he discovered his love for performing. Embracing the eccentricity of Daddy Brubeck in Sweet Charity, accompanying Dorothy along her travels as the Tin Man in The Wizard Of Oz and hoping to impress as the poor, nervous tailor Motel (and later in his school life, the fiercely traditional father of five Tevye) in Fiddler On The Roof were among some of his earliest memories on the stage, and his introduction to showbiz had begun.
In 2002, he went to study French and Spanish at Leeds University, but, after a year there, he realised that his passion for music far outweighed any academic aspirations he may have had, and so, went on to pursue his dreams. He moved to London in August 2005 to begin work on his own music, alongside a manager and several producers and PR/record companies. The result was About You (available on iTunes), and was showcased at the Cobden Club and Pizza On The Park, as well as at the Cannes Film Festival. He spent nearly 2 years in London, working bars and pubs, and playing in a function band. But as positive as the whole experience was, Martin felt he needed inspiration. So, in February 2007, he decided to board a cruise ship and ply his trade around the world! This became the most influential period for his musical development. Martin spent four years on the ships (apart from a 10 month period in 2008 when he toured around Europe playing in piano bars and jazz clubs, including Maxim Piano Bar in Amsterdam and Wakker in Eemnes, The Netherlands), during which time he met other incredible performers who inspired him, he developed his musical style, and was introduced to Aaron Levy, former CFO of Elektra Records.
Late 2010 was a turning point, when he decided to leave the cruise ships behind and move to New York to see what musical opportunities he could find in the USA. He spent 9 months working in bars and restaurants, continuing to write music, while his new manager Bill Berger, together with Aaron Levy and his new agent Edie Robb, made real steps to help him to get the break he’d been longing for.
In June 2011, he got called to audition for the role of Jerry Lee Lewis in the first international tour of Million Dollar Quartet. One call-back later, and in July, he was handed the role! After performing in the tour for over a year, Martin was nominated for a Helen Hayes Award as Outstanding Lead Actor in a Non-Resident Musical. He is now realising a dream by performing on the Las Vegas strip! The new production of MDQ opened at Harrah’s Casino on February 19th to rave reviews, and has been packing houses consistently since then! Tickets available here.
Over the years, Martin has always been writing songs, based on his life experiences, or just whatever he felt like at the time! He also loves to collaborate with other musicians and producers. About You, mostly a collaborative project, was released in 2006, and he’s currently working on Everything The Pen Wants To Say, a collection of songs that he’s written mostly himself within the last 10 years. It features such songs as “Opening Hearts (Eliana’s Song)” and “You’ll Be Alright”, which have become crowd favourites. He’s also conceptualising an album of just piano music. And there's a fourth album in the works, collaborating with world-renowned songwriter and artist Kenny Nolan.
Martin Kaye Awards and Nominations
|Helen Hayes Awards - 2013 - Outstanding Lead Actor, Non-Resident Production|
|Martin KayeMillion Dollar Quartet|