Instructor of Musical Theatre
Jay Schwandt received his MM in Composition from Michigan State University in 1998 after having completed his undergraduate work at Albion College. He is the composer of the one-act opera Night in Sarajevo and the musical Crazy Mary, both with lyrics by Jan Levy Tranen. Crazy Mary, about the life of Mary Todd Lincoln, was a Richard Rodgers Award finalist in 2010. Schwandt contributed over 30 arrangements for the musical Doo-Dah! about the life of songwriter Stephen Foster. Doo-Dah! was conceived by choreographer Michael Lichtefeld and written by playwright Martin Casella and has had readings in Chicago and Stratford, Ontario. Most recently Schwandt toured the country with actor John Vessels in their cabaret An Evening with Lillian Baxter for which he wrote arrangements and original material. Their other show A Very Lillian Baxter Christmas was performed in Louisville in 2013.