Following a national search, Manhattan School of Music (MSM) has named Broadway choreographer and educator Liza Gennaro director of musical theatre and associate dean. She officially assumes the role July 1.
Gennaro joins MSM following her tenure as head of musical theatre at Indiana University's Department of Theatre, Drama, and Contemporary Dance. An accomplished choreographer, Gennaro's Broadway credits include revivals of The Most Happy Fella and Once Upon a Mattress, with Off-Broadway and regional credits at such companies as Roundabout Theatre Company, Actor's Theatre of Louisville, the Old Globe, Hartford Stage, Guthrie Theatre, The Goodspeed, and Paper Mill Playhouse.
Her writing appears in The Oxford Handbook of the American Musical and The Oxford Handbook of Dance and Theater. A new book, Making Broadway Dance, is forthcoming from Oxford University press. Gennaro is also a member of the executive board of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society.
A talent for Broadway dance seems to be genetic in the Gennaro family; Liza is daughter of Peter Gennaro, the late choreographer of such Broadway productions as Fiorello! and Annie (Liza has staged her father's original choreography for several recent national tours of the latter) and co-choreographer (alongside Jerome Robbins) of West Side Story.
In joining MSM, Gennaro will head a relatively young program, established in fall 2016 by the program's current director Luis Perez. MSM's program is the first musical theatre degree program in New York to be offered at an independent conservatory—and currently only the second such program in the country.