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About Kevin E. McCollum

Kevin McCollum is one of Broadway’s leading producers. Here is background on the speaker for the University of Cincinnati’s Commencement ceremonies.

Date: 4/21/2005 12:00:00 AM
By: Carrie Throm
Phone: (513) 556-4441

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Kevin E. McCollum

A 1984 graduate of the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM), Kevin E. McCollum, 43, has had a meteoric rise in the theatrical business and has positioned himself as one of the most entrepreneurial minds of his profession.

McCollum served as co-producer (with Jeffrey Seller, Allan Gordon and New York Theater Workshop) of the Broadway musical sensation, RENT. In 1996 RENT dominated the Tony Awards, winning Best Musical, Best Book, Best Score and Best Featured Actor. The musical also won the 1996 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, only the fifth musical ever to win both the Pulitzer and the Tony. Nine years later RENT still enjoys a healthy run on Broadway. Under McCollum’s guidance as Co-Executive Producer, RENT will make its cinematic debut, with most of its original Broadway cast (including Idina Menzel of Wicked and Jesse L. Martin of NBC’s Law & Order), in November, 2005; Chris Columbus, of Harry Potter and Home Alone fame, directs.

In 1995 McCollum and Jeffrey Seller co-founded The Producing Office, where McCollum is owner and chairman of the board. The Producing Office is currently represented on Broadway by the smash-hit musical Avenue Q, winner of three Tony Awards in 2004 including Best Musical, Best Book and Best Score, as well as RENT. More recently McCollum produced the debut stage production of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas at the Curran Theater in San Francisco. Off Broadway, he produced De La Guarda which has seen companies in Las Vegas, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Tel Aviv and Seoul. McCollum has served as Producer of The Wild Party, Baz Luhrmann’s La Bohème on Broadway (two Tony Awards in 2002) and Private Lives (Tony Award in 2001).

McCollum is a managing partner in 37 Arts, a new Off-Broadway theatre complex where Mikhail Baryshnikov will be in residence with his new company. The Off-Broadway production of Hurlyburly, starring Ethan Hawke, began an open-ended run at 37 Arts in April 2005. Additionally, McCollum finalized a deal in 2004 with Wynn Las Vegas to build a theater at the casino that will present Avenue Q, due to open in September, 2005. Mr. McCollum is also Co-owner of The Booking Group, a pre-eminent theatrical booking agency currently handling the national tours of The Producers, Mamma Mia, and RENT.  Other productions mounted by the company have included Victor/Victoria, Damn Yankees, Jekyll & Hyde, West Side Story, Blood Brothers, The Sisters Rosensweig, Crazy For You, The Sound of Music, Evita, Oleanna, Lost in Yonkers, The Real Live Brady Bunch, Love Letters, The Lion In Winter, The Odd Couple and Meet Me In St. Louis.

For seven years McCollum was the president and CEO of the Ordway Music Theatre in St. Paul. He holds an MFA in film producing from the University of Southern California. He was formerly associate producer for the St. Louis MUNY outdoor theater and Executive Producer of the feature film Jeffrey.

McCollum is a member of the National Endowment for the Arts peer review panel for musicals, the League of American Theatres and Producers, and the Independent Feature Film Board. He is a Trustee of the Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation. In 1995 he received the Commercial Theater Institute’s Robert Whitehead Award for outstanding achievement in commercial theatre producing.

McCollum lives in Manhattan with his wife Lynette Perry-McCollum, a 1985 graduate of CCM and successful Broadway actress.


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