Kurt Deutsch has been named Senior Vice President, Theatrical & Catalog Development for Warner/Chappell Music. Based in New York, Deutsch reports to Warner/Chappell Chairman & CEO Jon Platt. Alongside his new post, he continues to serve as President of Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight Records – the multi-Grammy Award winning theatrical music company he founded in 2000.
Deutsch will oversee the signing and nurturing of theatrical composers, as well as identify and develop new theatrical projects and properties. At the same time, he will manage Warner/Chappell’s rich theatre and standards repertoire, which ranges from works by Cole Porter, Rodgers & Hart, and Lerner and Loewe to Stephen Sondheim and Lin-Manuel Miranda. Deutsch will also work closely with the publisher’s synch, licensing, marketing and mechanical departments to secure performance and recording opportunities for Warner/Chappell’s extensive songwriting roster.
In making the announcement, Jon Platt said: “Kurt is one of the most prominent figures in the Broadway world, having built Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight into a major force in musical theatre. His exceptional creative instincts, deep relationships in the theatrical community, and extensive experience in encouraging and cultivating composers will be invaluable as we continue to expand our service to songwriters. Today, the theatrical world is in the midst of a renaissance, and Kurt is a leader of this new generation of incredibly gifted songwriters, who are creating brilliant music that transcends genres and cultures.”
Kurt Deutsch noted: “I am thrilled to be joining Warner/Chappell at this exciting time in the company’s evolution. Jon and his fantastic team have created the ideal environment to nurture songwriters at every stage of their careers, and I’m looking forward to helping our artists create and develop their work across the spectrum – from nascent song ideas to full-fledged theatrical works. The depth of talent in the theatre world today is extraordinary, and it is our goal to open up every opportunity for our writers to refine their craft and bring their music to the widest possible audience. At the same time, the Warner/Chappell catalog is a mother lode of brilliant theatrical writers whose work is ripe with potential in the modern era. I want to thank Jon for this tremendous opportunity.”
Following a 15-year career as an actor on and off Broadway in television and film, Kurt Deutsch co-founded Sh-K-Boom Records with actress Sherie Rene Scott in New York City. Over the past 17 years, he has worked hand-in-hand with a new generation of theatre artists and composers to bring their music to a new, wider audience. In 2004, he launched the imprint Ghostlight Records, which has become the leading independent force in Original Broadway Cast Recordings. Working in partnership with Broadway’s top producers, he has built a library of over 150 high-quality releases featuring many of the most successful Broadway musicals, as well as albums by Broadway’s brightest stars.
Sh-K-Boom/Ghostlight has won three Grammy Awards to date – for the Original Broadway Cast Recordings of Book of Mormon, In The Heights, and Beautiful: The Carole King Musical. Other notable releases include the OBCR’s of Tony-nominated shows such as the revival of Falsettos, War Paint, Something Rotten!, Next to Normal, Legally Blonde, Newsies, and the revivals of She Loves Me, Hair, Pippin, and Anything Goes. The label has also released solo albums from well-known Broadway names such as: Patti LuPone, Christine Ebersole, Kelli O’Hara, Sutton Foster, Sherie Rene Scott, Alice Ripley, Melissa Errico and Adam Pascal.
Among the many musical theatre composers supported by Sh-K-Boom are noted writers such as Stephen Schwartz, Allan Menken, William Finn, David Yazbek, Jason Robert Brown, Michael John LaChiusa, Michael Korie and Scott Frankel, Andrew Lippa, Michael Friedman, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Brian Yorkey and Tom Kitt, Pasek & Paul, Joe Iconis, and Shaina Taub and Dave Malloy. Deutsch also produced the acclaimed musical film version of Jason Robert Brown’s The Last Five Years, written and directed by Richard LaGravenese and starring Anna Kendrick and Jeremy Jordan.
Effective August 1, Sh-K-Boom and Ghostlight releases will be distributed by ADA, Warner Music Group’s independent distribution and services arm.
Warner/Chappell’s deep catalog in musical theatre includes songs written by legends such as George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Lerner and Loewe, Charles Strouse, Comden and Green, Stephen Sondheim, and Rodgers and Hart. The publisher’s current roster of theatrical composers includes Lin-Manuel Miranda, William Finn, Brian Yorkey, Tom Kitt, Amanda Green, Lynn Ahrens and Stephen Flaherty, Andrew Lippa, Chad Beguelin, Matthew Sklar, Karey Kirkpatrick, Michael John LaChiusa, Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg, Nathan Tysen, Chris Miller, Joe Iconis, Benjamin Scheuer, and others.