Ryan Scott Oliver

Ryan Scott Oliver (born August 27, 1984) is an American musical theatre composer and lyricist. He is a 2011 Lucille Lortel Award Nominee[1] and the recipient of both the 2009 Jonathan Larson Grant and the 2008 Richard Rodgers Award for Musical Theater.[2] Oliver is an adjunct professor at Pace University in New York, and Artistic Director of the Pasadena Musical Theatre Program in California. He received his B.A. in Music Composition from UCLA and his M.F.A. in Musical Theatre Writing from the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. He is also creator of the blog Crazytown and member of A.S.C.A.P. Oliver's work has been heard at the Writers Guild Awards,[3] Off-Broadway in TheatreWorksUSA's We the People,[4] and countless showcases.

Ryan Scott Oliver
Background information
Born (1984-08-27) August 27, 1984 (age 35)
Pasadena, California
Occupation(s)Composer, lyricist

Ryan, along with actress Lindsay Mendez, founded and currently runs Actor Therapy: a five-week training experience for young actors in NYC.[5]

He is openly gay, and married to photographer Matthew Murphy.[6]

Early lifeEdit

Oliver was born in Pasadena, California and his interest in musicals began at 9 years old when he joined a local summer musical theater camp. In 2004, Oliver took over the program as Artistic Director and renamed it the Pasadena Musical Theatre Program.[7] Oliver also attended the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts.


Mrs. SharpEdit

Mrs. Sharp (previously called Alive at Ten), with music and lyrics by Oliver and book by Kirsten Guenther, is loosely based on the 1991 teacher-student sex scandal and murder trial surrounding Pamela Smart. Mrs. Sharp was given a staged reading at Playwrights Horizons in 2009 in a production directed by Michael Greif with Jane Krakowski as the title character. Playwright Horizons described Mrs. Sharp as:[8]


Darling, conceived by Brett Ryback and with the book, music and lyrics by Oliver, is a dark retelling of J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan. It follows sixteen year-old Darling in 1920s New England, and her adventures with Peter, a rent-boy. With him, she explores the seedy underground world of drugs, sex, and a white powder called Dust.[9] Darling was featured on the "Bound for Broadway" episode of NBC's The Apprentice in 2010, and[10] was presented by Pace New Musicals Program in 2009, and in 2012, was given a private workshop and developmental production as a collaboration between Retrop Production and RareWorks Theatre Company, in association with Sh-K-Boom Records, at Emerson College.[11] In 2013, Darling received The Weston Playhouse Theatre Company New Musical Award. In 2019, a staged reading of "Darling" was performed at NYU's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development.


35MM, a multimedia "musical exhibition" in which photographic images, by Oliver in collaboration with photographer Matthew Murphy inspire music and lyrics, and inversely music and lyrics inspire photographs, is preserved as an original cast recording by the Ghostlight label.[12] A full developmental production was presented at Urban Stages in December 2010, directed by Daisy Prince. 35MM made its Off-Broadway World Premiere at the Galapagos Art Space in New York City on March 7, 2012. Due to popular demand, the show was extended and sold out its run. 35MM is currently being licensed and has received productions in Baltimore, MD,[13] Dayton, OH,[14] London and Canada in 2013.[15] In June 2015, it made its Australian premiere in the inaugural season of Harvest Rain's Incubator Series in Brisbane, Queensland.

Jasper in DeadlandEdit

Jasper in Deadland is a pop-rock musical based on the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice. It follows 16-year-old Jasper Jarvis as he travels through the Afterlife on a mission to save his best friend, Agnes. Jasper in Deadland was commissioned in 2011 for the Pasadena Musical Theatre Program, and premiered as part of the Los Angeles Festival of New Musicals. In 2014 it was produced by Prospect Theater Company at the West End Theatre in New York City starring Matt Doyle, Ben Crawford, and Allison Scagliotti and directed by Brandon Ivie. In 2015, it had a tryout at the 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle, Washington, with Matt Doyle, Sydney Shepherd, and Louis Hobson and directed by Brandon Ivie. In February 2016 at Studio 54 a CD release concert was held starring Matt Doyle and Sydney Shepard. The CD was released in May 2016.[16]

We FoxesEdit

We Foxes, a Southern Gothic Thriller set in Missouri, 1945, is a new project started commissioned by Broadway Across America. We Foxes tells about Willa, a tough and unmannered orphan girl adopted by the Sheriff’s Wife, a calculating socialite, and the bloody domestic war that ensues between them when the girl uncovers the terrible secrets lurking beneath the floorboards. Oliver attended the TheatreWorks Silicon Valley Writer’s Retreat in April 2013 for We Foxes. This show was also featured at CAP 21 and the Weston Playhouse.[17]

Other worksEdit

List of Popular SongsEdit

  • "A Hypochondriac's Song" from Out of My Head
  • "Living Dead" from Jasper in Deadland
  • "Stroke by Stroke" from Jasper in Deadland
  • "The Killing" from Jasper in Deadland
  • "Halfway"
  • "Insides Out" from The Frog Prince Continued
  • "Lost Boy" from Darling
  • "Never" from Darling
  • "Cut You a Piece" from 35MM
  • "On Monday" from 35MM
  • "Out of My Mind" from Mrs. Sharp
  • "The Ballad of Sara Berry" from 35MM
  • "This is Your Life" from The Battery's Down
  • "What I Wouldn't Do For You" from Mrs. Sharp
  • "Twisted Teeth" from 35MM



  1. ^ "2011 Nominations and Recipients". lortelaward.com (Press release). Lortel Awards. 2011. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  2. ^ a b "2008 Richard Rodgers Awards: Three Musicals Win Competition". ArtsandLetters.org (Press release). American Academy of Arts and Letters. February 19, 2008. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
  3. ^ "Kristen Schaal Sings and Dances to open the Writers Guild Awards". YouTube (Press release). The Writers Guild East. February 5, 2011. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  4. ^ "We The People". theatreworksusa.org (Press release). Theatreworks USA. 2013. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  5. ^ "Home". Actor Therapy.
  6. ^ "How Matthew Murphy and Ryan Scott Oliver's Romance Became a Real-Life Musical - Playbill". Playbill.
  7. ^ "Interview with Ryan Scott Oliver".
  8. ^ Jones, Kenneth (July 19, 2009). "Krakowski Will Be Teacher Mrs. Sharp in Musical Reading Ripped From Headlines". Playbill. Archived from the original on July 24, 2009. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
  9. ^ "Darling - Ryan Scott Oliver".
  10. ^ Internet Movie Database (October 28, 2010). "Broadway Boardroom". imdb/com. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  11. ^ News Desk (December 10, 2008). "PACE to Present World Premiere Reading of 'DARLING' Musical 1/20-1/25". Broadwayworld.com. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
  12. ^ http://www.sh-k-boom.com/35mm.html
  13. ^ "'35mm: A Musical Exhibition' at Stillpointe Theatre Initiative by Amanda Gunther - DC Metro Theater Arts". 11 April 2012.
  14. ^ Playbill (June 4, 2012). "Ryan Scott Oliver's 35mm A Musical Exhibition Will Get Dayton Premiere". playbill.com. Archived from the original on June 24, 2013. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  15. ^ Ryan Scott Oliver (December 10, 2012). "35MM: Amusical Exhibition Opens Regionally in London and Canada". ryanscottoliver.com. Archived from the original on December 12, 2012. Retrieved June 23, 2013.
  16. ^ Desk, BWW News. "JASPER IN DEADLAND World Premiere Cast Recording Released Today". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2019-01-21.
  17. ^ (Press release). Ryan Scott Oliver. June 6, 2013 https://web.archive.org/web/20131227065205/http://www.ryanscottoliver.com/news/rso-attends-writers-retreat-for-new-show-we-foxes. Archived from the original on December 27, 2013. Retrieved June 23, 2013. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  18. ^ "Music + Lyrics by Ryan Scott Oliver – Volume 1, P/V/G Composer Collection - Hal Leonard Online". www.halleonard.com.
  19. ^ http://www.emeraldcitytheatre.com/shows_1213_frogprince.php
  20. ^ Jones, Kenneth (February 12, 2009). "Allen, Malloy, Mizer, Moore and Oliver Given 2009 Jonathan Larson Grants for Musical Writing". Playbill. Archived from the original on October 11, 2012. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
  21. ^ Gans, Andrew (February 21, 2008). "Musicals Alive at Ten, Kingdom and See Rock City Win 2008 Richard Rodgers Awards". Playbill. Archived from the original on October 11, 2012. Retrieved February 3, 2010.
  22. ^ "ASCAP Foundation Harold Adamson Lyric Award". ASCAP. Retrieved February 3, 2010.

External linksEdit