Jeff Marx

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Jeff Marx
Robert Lopez Jeff Marx Tony Awards.jpg
Jeff Marx (left) and Robert Lopez (right) receiving their Tony Award in 2004
Background information
Born (1970-09-10) September 10, 1970 (age 47)
United States
Genres Musical
Occupation(s) Composer

Jeff Marx (born September 10, 1970) is an American composer and lyricist of musicals. He is best known for creating the Broadway musical Avenue Q with collaborator Robert Lopez.

Early life

Marx grew up in Hollywood, Florida. He attended Pine Crest School in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Following graduation, he attended the University of Michigan, where he was a member of the Men's Glee Club. He also holds a juris doctor degree from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and is a member of the New York State Bar Association, but he does not practice law or represent himself.

Musical career

After passing the New York State Bar examination Marx enrolled at the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theater Workshop in order to meet potential clients in the entertainment industry. Here, he met Robert Lopez who was also in the course.

Their first major project together, a spec Muppet movie, Kermit, Prince of Denmark, which was very loosely based on Hamlet, won them (as part of a tie) part of the $150,000 Kleban Award.

Together, they created the original concept for Avenue Q and wrote all the show's 21 songs. Avenue Q is currently running Off-Broadway and continues to have various international productions. It is now the 23rd longest running musical in Broadway history.

Avenue Q won the 2004 Tony Award for Best Musical. Lopez/Marx's musical score earned them a 2004 Tony Award, and another Tony Award was awarded to Avenue Q bookwriter, Jeff Whitty. The musical's Original Cast Album, on the RCA/Victor label, was nominated for a Grammy Award. To date[when?], it has sold over 150,000 copies.

Marx (and his parents) can be seen in the documentary film ShowBusiness: The Road to Broadway, which followed the trajectories of four Tony-nominated musicals from 2004, Avenue Q, Wicked, Taboo and Caroline, or Change. Marx, along with filmmaker Dori Berinstein and actor Alan Cumming, provided the audio commentary for the documentary's DVD.

Lopez and Marx wrote (with Debra Fordham) four songs for a musical episode of the NBC sitcom Scrubs which aired on January 18, 2007. Their song "Everything Comes Down to Poo" was nominated for an Emmy Award.[1] Marx appeared in the episode as a pharmacist, dancing in the background during the song "We're Gonna Miss You Carla".

Marx co-wrote the theme song for the Logo Network's animated series Rick & Steve: The Happiest Gay Couple in All the World and contributed additional songs for the show.

Lopez and Marx have written songs for the Disney Channel TV series Bear in the Big Blue House and The Book of Pooh, as well as touring stage musicals for the children's theater company Theaterworks/USA.

Marx contributed to a musical episode of the NBC sitcom Scrubs, an episode that the New York Times reported "energized a cast and crew that, at a point when most situation comedies are sputtering along or dead, have recently been doing some of their best work."[2] Marx enjoyed working on the show enough that he attributed it as a reason for his move to Los Angeles. In comparing it to his work on Avenue Q, Marx said: "It took us five years to write Avenue Q ... There were a million readings and previews and staged readings. With this thing, we wrote the songs in a week. They rehearsed for a week. They filmed it in a week, and it was done. It was liberating, and a collaborative effort that created a much more feel-good way of working."[2]

On December 13, 2008, Marx premiered a new song he wrote, "White Kwanzaa", on the CNN show D.L. Hughley Breaks the News.[3]

Marx collaborated with Mervyn Warren on a song called "You Have More Friends Than You Know" for the It Gets Better organization. The song was featured on the television program Glee on April 18, 2013. Marx recorded his version of the song and made it available for download with a portion of the proceeds going to support The Trevor Project. Marx has also made a karaoke version of the song available for those who want to perform their own version and help spread the song's message, and has featured other versions on the song's website.

Other work

Marx has also written the book How To Win A High School Election.

Personal life

Marx lives in Los Angeles and is a member of the Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles (GMCLA).

References

  1. ^ "Stage Stars Nab 2007 Emmy Nominations, Broadway.com Buzz". Broadway.com. 2012-08-01. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 
  2. ^ a b The New York Times, Diagnosis: Acute Case of Broadway Melodium Tremens, Tuesday, January 16, 2007.
  3. ^ "Jeff Marx sings Kwanzaa song "White Kwanzaa" on "D.L. Hughley Breaks The News" 12/13/08". YouTube. 2008-12-13. Retrieved 2013-12-05. 

External links

  • The Official Avenue Q website
  • Avenue Q merchandise: cd, program, posters, etc.
  • Jeff Marx at the Internet Broadway Database
  • Production: Avenue Q - Working in the Theatre Seminar video at American Theatre Wing.org, September 2003
  • The Official website for the song "You Have More Friends Than You Know"
  • Marx's book How To Win A High School Election Online
  • Jeff Marx interviewed on a free podcast from Masterworks Broadway
  • Jeff Marx on IMDb
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