Marc Shaiman waiting for the phone to ring

October 15, 2007

Marc Shaiman won both a Tony and a Grammy Award for the score to the smash hit Broadway Musical HAIRSPRAY.

He has been nominated for The Academy Award five times, for the films Sleepless In Seattle, The American President, The First Wives Club, Patch Adams, and South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut. He has lost each and every time! In 2002, Marc was honored with the “Hollywood Outstanding Achievement in Music-In-Film” award at the 69th annual Hollywood Film Festival. They didn’t send a car.

Marc has composed, adapted and arranged music, served as music supervisor and written lyrics for over 40 other films, including When Harry Met Sally, Beaches, Sister Act, City Slickers, The Addams Family, A Few Good Men, In & Out and George of The Jungle.

He started his career as Vocal Arranger for Bette Midler, eventually becoming her Musical Director and Co-Producer. His instincts, his ear and the fact that he is still a Bette Midler fanatic have enabled him to find and bring her the Grammy winning songs “Wind Beneath My Wings” and “From A Distance”. But it is their collaboration on her Emmy Award winning performance for the penultimate Tonight Show with Johnny Carson which will always remain the highlight. Oh, he auditioned to play himself in her short-lived sitcom. He did not get the part. (I’m not making this up!)

He has been nominated two times for the Emmy Award, and is an actual Emmy Award winner for co-writing Billy Crystal’s ‘Oscar Medleys. Other Television credits besides The Academy Awards are Saturday Night Live (Emmy Nomination for Writing), HBO’S From The Earth To The Moon, 61* and he has also appeared as a guest on: The Rosie O’Donnell Show, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, Late Night With Conan O’Brian and The Martin Short Show.

Besides having won for Hairspray, Marc has been nominated for two other Grammy Awards for his work with Harry Connick, Jr. His gold, platinum, multi-platinum and Grammy winning albums include: South Park: Bigger, Longer & Uncut, Bette Midler’s Beaches, Some People’s Lives, For The Boys, Bathhouse Betty, Harry Connick Jr’s When Harry Met Sally and We Are In Love.

As musical director, producer or arranger, Mr. Shaiman has worked with a shocking variety of performers including: Peter Allen, Eric Clapton, Rosemary Clooney, Harry Connick Jr., Billy Crystal, The Harlettes, Lauryn Hill, Jennifer Holliday, Nathan Lane, Jenifer Lewis, Darlene Love, Patti LuPone, Andrea Martin, Lonette McKee, Bette Midler, Catherine O’Hara, Martin Short, Barbra Streisand, Donald Trump (!), Luther Vandross, Robin Williams and Raquel Welch! (Although not all at the same time!!)

Mr. Shaiman has appeared in many of the films he has worked on, including his scene stealing moments in: South Park, Beaches, Hot Shots and James L. Brooks’ Broadcast News.

He resides in both New York City and Los Angeles with partner and collaborator Scott Wittman.

[Bio taken from The Musical Mind of Marc Shaiman]

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