'Renaissance Woman' - Musical Director and Composer, Carmel Dean
Summary: Perth seems 'a million miles away' from New York City, but it frames the journey of Carmel Dean; a musical practitioner of intellectual and creative power. She has been applauded extensively in a variety of roles that include Composer, Musical Director, Arranger and Pianist. Early training in classical piano and study at The West Australian Academy of Performing Arts, confirmed an ambition harboured by Carmel. She wanted to create, write and perform music, chiefly in the genre of musical theatre. In 2001 she was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to study in the United States and subsequently graduated from NYU's Graduate Musical Theatre Writing program. A dynamic approach to her work and an easy charm saw her triumph in a succession of creative tasks; transcribing, teaching and accompaniment, building collaborative relationships and demonstrating solid instincts. These experiences soon lead to roles in Musical Direction. As Musical Director, she has guided the Broadway productions of If/Then, Hands on a Hardbody, American Idiot and The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Off-Broadway credits include Everyday Rapture, Vanities and Elegies - A Song Cycle by William Finn. As Composer, Carmel's first musical, Renascence, was produced Off-Broadway and was named Best New Musical at the 2018 Off-Broadway Alliance Awards. A song-cycle titled Well Behaved Women had its premiere performance in New York at Joe's Pub in January, 2020. Carmel Dean is a remarkable musician and an inspiring woman. She is incredibly eloquent. We connected with Carmel remotely, to traverse her extraordinary career thus far, and obtain a fascinating insight into the construction of a Musical narrative.