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Curtis McKonly is comfortable working in many areas of music having been asked to compose and orchestrate in various styles from pop to film to symphonic to jazz to theatre, and having written for different mediums from theatrical film and TV, to pop recordings, concert stage and live theatre. He has been asked many times by people wanting to know his musical tastes, 'what kind of music do you like the most, and what kind do you like to write?' Without a beat his response has consistently been, 'good music.' It is with this attitude and passion that Curtis continually strives for his best and moving musical palette.

Curtis started in music at a very young age of five and a half years studying the piano, not even able to reach the pedals because of his short legs. The teacher almost did not accept him as a student because of his age. But, fortunately the teacher did accept this challenge and Curtis did grow, was eventually able to reach the pedals and continued to study. In addition to playing piano, he studied percussion in school and also became a vocalist. He pursued a formal musical education at the University of Miami as well as the Eastman School of music, and continued to study privately with composer Ludmila Ulehla and arranger Don Sebesky.

McKonly has proven his versatility as a composer with numerous TV credits including themes for WCBS News, Sunday Edition, NYC Marathon, A&E: The Stage, in addition to the long running news exposé theme, Shame on You for WCBS. He has composed underscores for national commercials, theatrical trailers and promotional spots for other networks including NBC, WPIX, WCVB and SHOWTIME.

His arranging credits include a gold CD with Vanessa Williams, arrangements for Jennifer Hudson, Megan Hilty, Laura Benanti, Beach Boys, Brian Stokes Mitchell, the Four Tops and Temptations, James Brown, and also orchestrations for the Chicago Symphony, Boston Pops, Dallas Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, feature films and TV.

In addition to his work as a composer and orchestrator, Curtis has played piano and keyboards for numerous Broadway shows, and has played for singers Leslie Uggams and Diahann Carroll for which he also arranged. His duties as a musical director and accompanist have required his skills as a conductor, having conducted major symphonies and theatre shows.

Curtis has recently moved back to the east coast, having lived in Los Angeles and in New York City for over 25 years prior to his move to LA. The two coasts are different, but there is a similarity. Curtis still is asked the question, 'what kind of music do you like the most, and what kind do you like to write?' 'Good music.' His answer will never change.

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Wishing You A Happy New Year
      Leslie Uggams & Curtis McKonly Orchestra
The Warmth Of Christmas
      Curtis King, Jr. & Curtis McKonly Orchestra
A Search For Peace
      Robin Zeh & Curtis McKonly Orchestra
Heal The Pain We Bear|The Pledge Of Allegiance
      Curtis McKonly

TV (themes):

WCBS News - New York
Shame On You - WCBS
The Stage: A&E
Sunday Edition - WCBS
1994 NYC Marathon - WPIX
VH-1 Top 21 Countdown
Late Night Movie - WCBS
Sports Update - WCBS

TV (commercials & promos):

Oreos, Pediacare, Pollident, Get High, Get Stupid, Get Aids - Anti-drug campaign commissioned by the Ad Council; WCBS, NBC News, WPIX, KPIX, VH-1, WCIX, A&E, WCVB, SHOWTIME


Freedom to Hate - PBS
Happy Holidays - National Amusement Cinemas
The Bryant Legacy
Inside NBC News - NBC


CDs & Records:

America The Beautiful  Leslie A. Soultanian,
      Joseph Mahowald, Curtis McKonly
The First Noel  Star Bright Vanessa Williams
When I Look In Your Eyes  For Once
      Brian Stokes Mitchell, Jeff Kievit
Christmas Present  Rick Henly
Love Like Fire  Rick Henly
Truth Shall Triumph  Bethel Sanctuary Choir
Our God is One  Bethel Sanctuary Choir
Jumpin' On the Bandstand  Rich Szabo Orchestra


Boston Pops - Jennifer Hudson, Nick Jonas,
      Martina McBride, Toby Keith, Rascal Flatts,
      Tom Scholz, Aerosmith, David Lee Roth
American Television Awards
      (George Schlatter Productions) ABC
The Best of Disney Music  CBS
Motown Medley - Four Tops & The Temptations
      (Euro-Disney Opening Ceremonies) CBS


Once Again

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Orchestrator/Arranger   (Continued)

Symphonic/Big Band:

NSO - Megan Hilty, Cheyenne Jackson (2020); Charlotte Symphony (2019); Ocean City Pops (2019); Boston Pops - Jennifer Hudson, Megan Hilty, Laura Benanati (2012-2017); Now That You're Home, It's Christmas; Home For The Holidays - Chicago Symphony & Chorus (2014); Three European Carols - Dallas Symphony & Chorus (2013); Beach Boys - National Symphony Orchestra (2011); Pie Jesu - Panama City POPS Orchestra (2011); Swing Big Band 40's and 50's (2011); The Song In Our Hearts - Chicago Symphony & Chorus (2003); Metropolis Symphony & Chorus (2005); Great TV Themes for Warner Bros. Publications; Jingle Bells for String Quartet/Flute (published by Curtis McKonly Music); Other commissioned works.


Almost Like Being In Love   Lerner & Loewe Songbook w/Diahann Carroll
The Green Heart   Variety Arts Theater, Manhattan Theater Club, NY
Phantom of the Opera   Hirschfeld Theatre, Miami, FL
Heart's Desire   Cleveland Playhouse, OH
Rich Forum Gala Benefit Opening   Stamford Center for the Arts, Stamford, CT
Broadway Rhythm   Tokyo, Japan


Conductor/Pianist for Leslie Uggams - Indianapolis Symphony, Boca Raton Pops
Conductor/Pianist for Diahann Carroll - Almost Like Being In Love
Associate Conductor Les Misérables National Tour.


Keyboardist for Broadway shows and other stage performances: Lion King, Wicked, Les Misérables, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Beauty & the Beast, Cats, Mamma Mia, Titanic, The Life, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Goodbye Girl, Starlight Express, A Helluva Town (Rainbow & Stars), The Boswell Sisters (Rainbow & Stars), and Andrew Lloyd Webber's Requiem.


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