AbouT MZ

Michael was born and raised in New York City where he attended LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts, Drama Department. He's a graduate of the University of Michigan Musical Theater Department. His writing includes DISSONANCE ASCENDING, OR WHEN WE STAY, a 2018 semifinalist for the Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, workshopped with Writing By Writers and at the Provincetown Fine Arts Work Center. Michael’s series of essays, “Musicals, Madness, and Memory,” was published by HuffPost Queer Voices in 2017. He sings in concert, most recently at Feinstein's/54 Below and with Music Director Will Van Dyke, created the solo shows STILL IT'S TRUE, NO MORE UPSIDE DOWN, HERE I GO, and SONGS BARBARA TAUGHT US, a tribute to his favorite, Barbara Cook. As an actor he was “Leaf Coneybear” in the First National Tour of THE 25TH ANNUAL PUTNAM COUNTY SPELLING BEE (Original Cast, directed by James Lapine) and "David" in THE BOY IN THE BATHROOM, one of NYMF's Most Promising Musical Winners. Michael has worked as a Lifeline Crisis Counselor for The Trevor Project and is very grateful to have recently become a full-time staff member at The Actors Fund. He will always beat you at The Golden Girls trivia.


2018 Semifinalist:

Eugene O'Neill National Playwrights Conference.

Dissonance Ascending,

or When We Stay


Musicals, Madness, and Memory

Part 1

When a Musical is More Than a Broadway Show, or That Time a ’90s “Flop” Brought a Teenage Heart to Life

Part 2

I Can “Cook” Too, or The Continual Aspiration to Sing Like a Legend

Part 3

The Road You Didn’t Take [Always] Comes to Mind”: A “Sondheimian” Departure and What Followed.

Part 4

“And the Sparklers Light the Sky."

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©2020 by Michael Zahler.