Ben Toth is a theater/film composer, musical director and vocal coach.
Ben is the composer for the musical of “Sleepless in Seattle,” which recently completed its world premiere at California’s Pasadena Playhouse.
The National Symphony Orchestra recently premiered Ben's setting of Sylvia Plath's "Mad Girl's Love Song," sung by Cheyenne Jackson at the Kennedy Center's sold-out New Years Eve Gala. In addition to Cheyenne, Grammy/Tony winner Duncan Sheik, Tony winner John Lloyd Young, and Grammy nominee Jane Monheit have also performed Ben’s music. He has co-written songs with Pulitzer Prize winner Paul Muldoon and Grammy/Tony winner Steven Sater (“Spring Awakening”). Ben wrote the songs for a production of “Twelfth Night,” performed Off-Broadway in 2010 and featured in a recent Public Theatre gala honoring multi-Tony Award winner Jack O’Brien. Songs from Ben’s collaboration with Paul Muldoon have been showcased as part of the opening concert of the MacDowell Colony’s Centennial Celebration as well as in performances at New York’s Symphony Space.
Ben composed the score for writer-director Josh Radnor's “Liberal Arts,” a feature film starring Radnor, Allison Janney, Richard Jenkins, Zac Efron, and Elizabeth Olsen. The film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and recently opened in select cities around the world. Before that, Ben scored “Patrimony,” a short film starring Oscar-Nominee Robert Vaughn and Tony nominee Melissa Errico.
Ben has served as musical director/vocal coach/arranger for some of the most popular actor/singers currently working on the stage, including Martin Short, Christina Hendricks (“Mad Men”), Beau Bridges, Lea Michele, Taye Diggs, and Mandy Patinkin, with whom he performed to critical acclaim at the Duke of York’s Theatre in London’s West End. In 2011, Ben made his Carnegie Hall debut, serving as the Musical Director/Arranger/Pianist for Cheyenne Jackson’s sold-out concert performance.
Ben received a BA from Brown University, and studied composition, voice, piano, and orchestral conducting at the Eastman School of Music. He is repped by Mark Subias at UTA and is a proud member of The Dramatists Guild.
"Bottom line: come Monday, none of us are coming in." Those were the words of director/choreographer Kenny Ortega a few weeks ago, as he faced 20 bright-eyed dancers, explaining that what was undoubtedly their dream job -- dancing in the movie-musical remake of Dirty Dancing -- was no longer happening....
When I was a 19-year-old theater intern in New York City, I befriended an old-school music director named Frank Zuback. To this day -- a great many years later -- I'll never forget a point Frank made about vocal riffing. (Riffing, as you most likely know, is when a singer...