Music: Vocal; Theatre: Acting, Directing, Other, Technical; term
BRIAN McDONALD an award-winning actor and director who was honored with the Ventura Mayor’s Award for Emerging Artist. He moved to Ventura in 2002 when he joined the Rubicon Theatre Company staff and served as Associate Artistic Director and the Director of Education and Outreach. He was the founder and program director of Rubicon’s Summer Youth Performance Program which offers theatre training intensives in acting, musical theatre, drama, Shakespeare and technical theatre. Before moving to the East coast, he appeared in the National Tours of Miss Saigon and Forever Plaid, the latter of which he also directed for various regional theaters including Rubicon Theatre Company. Regionally, he has appeared on the stages of the Denver Center, Theatre Virginia, The Lyric Stage, La Mirada Performing Arts Center, Ensemble Theatre Company, Pasadena Playhouse, Thousand Oaks Performing Arts Center and the Ahmanson. Brian’s most recent work on stage was in Rubicon’s production of the one-man show Buyer and Cellar and A Tuna Christmas which he also directed. Other Rubicon stage credits include Merrily We Roll Along, The SantaLand Diaries, Man of La Mancha and The Importance of Being Earnest. In 2002, LA Weekly honored him with the Best Supporting Actor Award for his performance as Gaveston in the Circle X production of Edward II directed by Michael Michetti. On Television, Brian starred in the award-winning ABC/PBS Afterschool Special “In the Shadow of Love: A Teen AIDS Story” and guest starred on “Gilmore Girls.” His work as a director began as an assistant to Tony-nominated director Christopher Renshaw during his work on Queen: The Musical (a.k.a. We Will Rock You). Other directing credits include Tennessee Williams’ Talk to me Like the Rain and Let me Listen, Hooters, Our Town, Little Women, Bye Bye Birdie, HONK!, Babes in Arms, Once on This Island, Schoolhouse Rock, LIVE!, Seussical the Musical, Footloose, Free to Be You and Me, Godspell, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, The Drowsy Chaperone, Urinetown, West Side Story, In the Heightsand On the Town. For Rubicon Theatre Company, Brian directed A Tuna Christmas, The Sunset Limited (with Joe Spano and Tucker Smallwood), Bus Stop (5 Ovation nominations including Best Play), MASTER HAROLD… and the boys (nominated for 3 Ovation awards Including Best Play) and the World Premiere musical, Hello! My Baby, written and conceived by Tony-nominated, Emmy, and Golden Globe winner, Cheri Steinkellner. His work as a director has earned him an Independent Award and StageScene LA Award for Best Director. He also conceived and directed the critically acclaimed holiday musical review, A Rubicon Family Christmas. He was recognized for his work in the community raising funds for arts education with a Phi Delta Kappa Community Partnership Award and an Honorary Service Award from the California State PTA two years in a row. Brian has taught a Fundamentals of Acting course at Ventura College. In addition to one-on-one training for performers, Brian offers private coaching in public speaking for lawyers, religious clergy, and business leaders. He is a B.F.A. graduate of the Boston Conservatory and is a member of the Screen Actors Guild, The Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers, and Actors’ Equity Association. In addition to his continued work as a professional director and actor, Brian serves as an arts commissioner for the City of Ventura and recently join the Ensemble Theatre Company team in Santa Barbara where he is the Director of Education and Outreach.