Penn State New Musicals Initiative

Poster about New Musicals Initiative


MIKE REID (Composer) has been one of the most feared defensive linemen in the NFL and the writer of more than 30 top-10 country and pop hits including Bonnie Raitt's "I Can't Make You Love Me," a song that has been recorded by 538 artists (including Adele) and is #8 on the list of the 100 Greatest Songs of All Time. 

The son of a railroad worker from Altoona, Pennsylvania, Mike has been an All-American defensive tackle at Penn State; the #1 draft pick of the Cincinnati Bengals; an All-Pro in ‘72 and '73; inductee into the College Football Hall of Fame and recipient of the Outland Trophy.  Reid gave up football to pursue a career in music, where his journey took him from rock to folk to country. As a classical pianist, he played with the Utah, Dallas, and Cincinnati Symphony Orchestras. He was inducted into the Nashville Songwriters Hall of Fame in 2005. In addition to his Grammy-winning pop hits, he is a composer of musicals, opera, dance, and chamber pieces.

Different Fields, the first collaboration of Mike's long-term partnership with SARAH SCHLESINGER (Lyrical/Librettist), was commissioned by the Metropolitan Opera and concerns the ethics of the American Football hero. After its New York premiere it has been performed throughout the USA and Australia. As a team, the pair have written "The Ballad of Little Jo," that premiered at Steppenwolf as the theatre's first musical and subsequently had a successful run in London. They are also the creators of "Casanova Return,” "In This House," and "Wind In The Willows.”  

Sarah is the Chair of the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program and Associate Dean of Performing Arts at the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU. In addition to her work with Mr. Reid, she has also been the lyricist/librettist for "True Love" produced at the George Street Playhouse by Daryl Roth and at Sharon Playhouse directed by John Simpkins. She was the lyricist/librettist for "Swing Shift" at the Manhattan Theatre Club. With Mr. Reid she has received the Kleban Award, The Richard Rodgers Award, the Gilman-Gonzalez Falla Theatre Foundation Award, and Chicago's Jeff Award for Best Original Musical. 



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Address: Penn State School of Theatre, 116 Theatre Building, University Park, PA 16802 USA.

Office: (814) 865 7586

Fax: (814) 865 5754

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