ANDY RONINSON is a pianist and composer currently living in New York City. He is a recipient of the 2019 Jonathan Larson Grant. In 2017, he participated in the Johnny Mercer Foundation Songwriters Project.
As a keyboardist, he has performed and/or recorded with artists in virtually every style, including jam bands, funk bands, rappers, bluegrass artists, ska bands, church choirs, and others. He has arranged music for a capella groups, gospel choirs, full-size jazz bands, string quartets, brass quintets, etc. He's performed at venues such as the Village Underground, B. B. King's, Smoke, the Van Dyck, and many more. He was a featured act on a bill that included Marvin Hamlisch, James Earl Jones, and Kelli O'Hara.
He studied classical piano for years before studying jazz performance at the Conservatory of Music at Purchase College with teachers Charles Blenzig, Arturo O'Farrill, Kevin Hays, Hal Galper, Jon Faddis, Steve Wilson, Todd Coolman, and others. At Purchase, he was awarded the James Moody Scholarship and graduated summa cum laude. He has shared the stage with such jazz legends as Hank Jones, Chris Potter, Randy Brecker, and others.
He has music directed and conducted Off-Broadway (Atlantic Theater, the Public Theater, Playwrights Horizons) at regional theaters (Park Playhouse, the New London Barn Playhouse) as well as at colleges (Dartmouth College, Fordham University, Purchase College) and numerous workshops and readings in New York City (Off-Broadway's Triassic Parq, AWOL's 8 Minute Musicals, etc.). He orchestrated, conducted, and played keyboards, guitar, and melodica for the NYC premiere of Wonderland: Alice's Rock and Roll Adventure. He was the Associate Music Director for A Second Chance by Ted Shen Off-Brodway at The Public Theater and was a copyist for St. Joan by David Byrne and directed by Alex Timbers. He was a rehearsal pianist for String by Adam Gwon and Sarah Hammond and Bella by Kirsten Childs, both at Playwrights Horizons.
He is the creator/host/executive producer of the podcast TAKE A TEN, a one-of-a-kind, monthly audio podcast of original, orchestrated ten-minute musicals. Each musical is a fully contained story created for the program by Andy Roninson and a collaborator and features performances by some of NYC and Broadway's top actors, including Tony-nominees Laura Osnes and Rob McClure. Episodes of TAKE A TEN have been produced at City Theatre in Miami, Broadway au Carré in Paris, France, Baldwin Wallace University, the New London Barn Playhouse, and Theatre Now New York's SOUND BITES festival four times, where it won Best Actress (Katie Whetsell, "Finding the Words"), Best Actor (Kyle Olsen, "The Almost-In Laws") Best Lyrics (Kevin Hammonds, "The Answering Machine"), and Best Musical twice ("The Answering Machine" and "The Almost In-Laws"). Episode #8: "Evelyn Shaffer and the Chance of a Lifetime" has been published by Samuel French and was the recipient of the City Theatre National Award for Short Playwrighting. For a full list of productions of and awards for TAKE A TEN, visit TakeATenMusicals.com/about/.
Andy is a member of the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop where he was awarded the Robert B. Sherman Scholarship in 2010 and the Jerry Harrington Award for Creative Excellence in 2011. His work has been featured several times at the BMI Semi-Annual Smoker, a showcase for selected works from the Workshop.
He co-wrote two full length musical comedies, Exorcism on Aisle Five and For The Birds, both with librettist Kristofer Wellman. He wrote music for the 15-minute musical "One More Room" (lyrics and book by Misha Shields), which was presented at the New York Theatre Barn and the BMI Workshop. He wrote music and lyrics for the eight-minute musical "Zander" (libretto and additional lyrics by Kelsey Celek), which premiered at the Artist Without Limits' 8 Minute Musicals series. And for Prospect Theater's Stage Fright, he wrote book, music, and lyrics for the ten-minute musical, "Shuffle Off."