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Lyn Koenning is an award-winning music director, vocal arranger and voice and acting coach whose students have appeared on Broadway, Disney theme parks and cruise ships, regional theatre, television and film. Koenning has nearly thirty years’ teaching, conducting and performing experience and discovered her calling early in life when she began teaching piano to neighborhood children and “directing” them in musicals at when she was eight years old. Four decades later, she is more passionate than ever about inspiring students to create a life for themselves in the performing arts.
A member of the University of Texas at Austin acting faculty, Koenning teaches courses in musical theatre auditioning and performance skills, directs the UT Musical Theatre Ambassadors, an ensemble that performs musical theatre repertoire in cabaret-style entertainment and musical revues for on- and off-campus events, and serves as the musical director for Department of Theatre and Dance productions. Koenning is also an audition coach for Stagelighter.com, an online resource that connects performers with industry professionals.
As a musical director and instrumental and vocal arranger, she also brings students together with creative teams to develop new work for musical theatre. In 2013-14 Koenning served as musical director for developmental workshops of ZM [Zombie Musical], written by the Tony-winning team behind Urinetown, Mark Hollmann and Greg Kotis, and Princesses: The Musical, written by the award-winning team of Cheri Steinkellner (Sister Act, Cheers), David Zippel (City of Angels), and Matthew Wilder (Mulan, Hercules).
Koenning is the producing artistic director of the Texas Musical Theatre Workshop, a three-week summer intensive for high school students who want to receive pre-professional training in musical theatre and college auditioning skills from Broadway professionals and experienced university faculty.
An accomplished pianist, she has extensive performing credits as a collaborative pianist for solo vocal and instrumental music, cover and pop bands, and musical theatre and opera. Koenning has accompanied TXMTW master classes for Broadway luminaries including Kathleen Marshall, Billy Porter, Laura Osnes, Barbara Cook, and Judy Kuhn.
Koenning was named Best Musical Director for the third time by the Austin Critics' Table Awards for UT's 2010 production of Pulitzer prize-winning composer David Lang's chamber opera The Difficulty of Crossing a Field. In 2009 she received nominations from the Austin Critics' Table as Best Musical Director for Caroline, or Change (ZACH Theatre), Always…Patsy Cline (TexARTS), and Oklahoma! (SummerStock Austin). Koenning garnered the 2008 award as Best Musical Director for Assassins at UT, ZACH Theatre’s landmark production of Porgy and Bess, and the TexARTS production of Carousel at the Paramount Theatre. She previously had earned the Austin Critics’ Table Award for Best Musical Director in 2005 for her direction of The Secret Garden (Zilker Hillside Theatre) and Cabaret (UT).
Koenning's experience as a performer perfectly complements her love for teaching musical theatre. She has served as musical director or conductor for, at last count, over sixty productions in Austin, six of which were named Best Musical including Beehive, Rockin’ Christmas Party, Dreamgirls, Big River, The Secret Garden and Porgy and Bess. Koenning has made multiple appearances as musical director at ZACH Theatre, the Paramount Theatre, the State Theatre, UT’s B. Iden Payne and Oscar G. Brockett Theatres, St. Edwards’ Mary Moody Northen Theatre, and Zilker Hillside Theatre. She previously was nominated by the Austin Circle of Theatres and the Austin Critics’ Table as Best Musical Director for Five Guys Named Moe (1994), The Beggar’s Opera (1995), A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine (1999), and Big River (1999). Before joining the faculty of the Department of Theatre and Dance, Koenning music directed the UT productions of The Threepenny Opera, Time Again in Oz, Marat/Sade, and Cabaret as a guest artist.
Koenning is a member of Musical Theatre Educator’s Alliance International and a Lifetime Member of the Texas Exes.
- Master of Music in Piano Pedagogy and Literature, The University of Texas at Austin
Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance, summa cum laude, Texas Tech University