Podcast Episode 97 – Three Time Tony Award Winning Director, Jack O’Brien

Jack and I set a date for his podcast a few months ago . . . and I’ve been like a kid on Christmas Eve waiting for the date to come.

Not just because I knew he’d drop advice like The Dalai Lama on Directing, but also because he’s one of the best speakers and storytellers around.  If you ever find yourself at a party and Jack is there?  Cozy up nearby and just listen . . . he’ll educate and entertain you for hours.

Today, I’m bringing some of that Jack party to you directly!  We got a good 45 minutes with the A-list Director of The Front Page, It’s Only A Play, Hairspray, Coast of Utopia and so many more (his IBDB page is like a menu at a diner . . . it goes on and on and has everything!)

So listen in to hear Jack talk about . . .

  • What losing his hair had to do with his directing career.
  • Why he believes his job is to get out of the way.
  • How he goes from Stoppard to Charlie and the Chocolate Factory . .  and the difference (if there is one?) in his process.
  • How not getting a directing gig taught him so much about how to get one (if you want to direct in the commercial theater you gotta hear this).
  • Dealing with the shows that don’t work . . . and how he storms back afterwards.

And when you’re done with the podcast, if you want more Jack, I highly recommend his book, Jack Be Nimble: The Accidental Education of an Unintentional Director which you can get here.


Click here to listen.

Listen to it on iTunes here.  (And if you like the podcast, give it a great review, while you’re there!)


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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.