Testimonials from industry, performers, and students
I am happy to write a letter of recommendation for Peter Michael Marino, an artist whom I have worked with since early 2005 when we began pre-production on his musical, “Desperately Seeking Susan”, for which I was a producer. I was very involved in every aspect of the production and worked closely with Peter from script development to workshops to previews.
Peter’s passion and vision is contagious -- and while the 2-year journey we took with the musical had its highs and lows, Peter maintained a level of professionalism and integrity that I found most admirable. He is a true team player and embodies the meaning of the word “collaborator.” He gained the respect of every member of the company, cast and crew, and was supportive of everyone’s work.
Not only is he clear in his vision, but he is always open to incorporating others’ ideas and making them work to serve the whole project. He is an excellent communicator and an extremely responsive writer who understands nearly every aspect of the theatre from design, to casting, to directing, to marketing.
I enjoyed working with Peter and would endorse him for any job in the theatre world (and beyond) that requires artistic passion, dedication, originality and vision.
Joseph Smith (Producer, Old Vic Productions)
From the moment he introduced himself in my office in 2004 with a very detailed treatment of a musical based on “Desperately Seeking Susan”, I knew that Peter was an artist I wanted to work with. Soon after reading his clever adaptation, I signed on as producer. Peter effortlessly took control of our first meeting with Debbie Harry, winning her over with his enthusiasm and inventive ideas, as the rights to the Blondie song catalog were granted on the spot.
Peter worked tirelessly on the script over the next year and was well ahead of every deadline. His hard work and ingenuity continued throughout our 2-year workshop and production process in the UK, from making sweeping overnight changes in previews to suggesting clever marketing ideas. He has an aesthetic eye and was generous in conveying his visual ideas to the creative team, and he garnered the admiration of every member of the British cast and crew. Although the show did not run for as long as we had hoped, Peter remained optimistic and continues to provide smart ideas for future productions. He worked with the Japanese director on the translation for the Tokyo production, and from my point of view, captured the spirit and intent of the show perfectly.
What I admire most about Peter is his creativity, commitment, and attention to detail. I would highly recommend him for any job -- from writing, to directing, to acting. His past experiences in all of these theatrical fields makes Peter an exceptional artist with a unique point of view.
Susan Gallin (Broadway Producer)
As artistic director of the New Alt Performance Group, I have recently worked alongside Peter Michael Marino as he directed “A Christmas Twist.” On a tight time table and with limited resources he deftly directed all aspects of this production and motivated others to join the efforts. He is a very organized deeply passionate director who understands how all the small details must work to create the final large picture. He seemed to know exactly how each scene would unfold and relate to that before and after it. His communication skills and ability to assist the actors build his/her characters were uncanny to watch. Peter demonstrates a deep wisdom of humanity and the universal language of theatre. He exerted extra efforts in coming to Buffalo in the early fall to learn about his actors and better prepare for the rehearsal period. In terms of other aspects of the production, he had a clear vision for the set and lighting designers and worked as a team player in this new theatre to see those designs materialize. He also designed the entire sound score, brilliantly illuminating the story of the play.
As an artist I personally enjoyed witnessing his dedication to the final product and his vitality and abounding skill to implement it all. We, the players of the NAPG, have been blessed with a chance to work under such profoundly talented direction.
Amy M. Taravella (Artistic Director, Alt Theatre - Buffalo)
It is a great pleasure to recommend Peter Michael Marino for any project he pursues. Peter brings talent, passion and brains to whatever discipline he may be engaged in – directing, producing writing, everything.
Recently Peter was appointed a position to head a student comedy workshop at Buffalo State College; while in town for six weeks, he made the most of his time and took on a directing project, casting local theatre veteran and Buffalo State students – an opportunity for students rarely offered. I witnessed first hand, artistic integrity, creative resourcefulness, and sharp knowledge while watching Peter produce a top rate production that ultimately raised the profile of a new theatre in the theatre community and community–at- large. (In fact, as I write Alt Theatre will be joining the Theatre Alliance of Buffalo in the next few weeks.)
Peter Michael is a true multi-talented theater artist who is a left and right brain thinker, bolstered by a personality that is both resolute and congenial.
Constance McEwen (Theatre Alliance of Buffalo)
It is with great honor and immense respect that I recommend Peter Michael Marino to you for a teaching and/or directing position available in your organization. I have a unique, multi-layered relationship with Peter that has spanned over multiple years as an actor, director, teacher and colleague. In every area Peter has been nothing short of exceptional.
I first met Peter as an alumnus from the Theater department in which I presently serve as Chair (Buffalo State College -SUNY). It was then that I became familiar with Peter’s intense discipline, complete dedication, infectious personality and calm professionalism. This combination of traits has since provided a foundation of excellence for everything he does. Peter is always hungry for the next step as an artist and teacher—this enthusiasm is infectious. While other artists hear the process, Peter always fully digests each element offered, making his work extremely personal, connected and truthful. Peter brings these traits to work regardless if he is acting, directing, writing or teaching. This blue print for excellence is clear from the beginning to the end of each process he immerses himself in—I believe this is the authentic definition of Artist. In an industry filled with pretenders and posers, Peter Michael Marino is the real thing.
It has been a joy watching Peter as a gifted teacher and director since he has returned to Buffalo State Theater. His excitement as a teacher/director is only eclipsed by his professional expertise. While I have seen Peter work with our students in the workshop arena several times, I was fortunate to have hired him to work with our students for five weeks in an extensive improvisation seminar. From the moment he arrived, Peter was completely engaged with and devoted to our students and their process. Peter was extremely respectful and clever with his ability to bring new ideas to the students without dismissing their previous training and vocabulary—he assimilated in our faculty immediately, without any sense of disruption or ego. You will note that upon your first meeting Peter will seem like an old friend and you will want him to be a permanent fixture in your organization. I wish I had the funding to hire Peter full-time—I would not hesitate!
Peter’s specific work with the students was creative, demanding and inspiring. He, thankfully, dispelled the mythology of improvisation existing without discipline as he carefully guided our students through a structure that was inventive and challenging. His ability to simultaneously teach the work, manage the process and listen to the students was exceptional. The work he created on the students continues to show up positively in their work today—they have not only adapted the format of his extremely successful serial Character Witness, they bring a new level of professionalism to their improvisation work at every level. He is honest without condemning, clear without condescending and intense without self-serving. Peter does not teach as a “back-up”, he teaches because he loves the magical process of performance education.
Peter is an exceptional colleague. He understands the complexities of the academic environment and is prepared to lead projects and new initiatives while simultaneously devoting himself to the collective work of the faculty and production teams in any theater program. Peter never complains, has a tireless work ethic and is always willing to tackle new projects with his undeniable grace, charm and pleasant ease. He is an ideal candidate for a professor, tenure track position in a Theater department that is committed to excellence within a challenging liberal arts academic environment—it is where he is from, it is what he knows, it is what he believes in, it is where he belongs. Uniquely, Peter is also an excellent candidate to teach and direct for professional theaters, arts organizations and studios. Peter is a rare artist who is immediately comfortable in ANY artistic environment—I believe this is partly because of his outstanding professional experience in acting, voiceovers, playwriting, music, administrating, directing and teaching—but I believe this is mainly because all of this success is merely a reflection of his soaring person…Peter Michael Marino is a gifted human being. Stunning resumes like Peter’s are not rare in our business; stunning people like Peter with these resumes are.
As you can see, I am extremely fond of Peter Michael Marino. In my over 20 years of academic and professional industry experience he rates as one of the very best I have had the good fortune to work with. He will undoubtedly make your institution proud. I urge you to consider Peter Michael Marino to help lead your program to new levels of excellence. Please feel free to contact me directly should you require additional information.
Drew Kahn (Professor, Theater Department -Buffalo State College)
I always feel that Peter is driving me to achieve my full potential. As a student in his workshop, or with our performer/director dynamic, Peter has helped to make me a more disciplined writer as well as a clearer and more specific actor/comic. I feel more secure and confident in my work because of his guidance. I look forward to continuing our creative relationship and feel very fortunate to call him a friend. All the work he has done has exceeded my expectations...I haven't said that about anyone since I lost my virginity.
MARK GIORDANO - Writer/Performer: Mad Man
I am writing in support of Peter Michael Marino’s exemplary work as a director. I am a solo performer, recently relocated to New York City. I was seeking a director to help me re-imagine a show I had been working with for some time, and in retrospect, it was kismet that I found Pete. Not only did he bring the new comedic sensibility to my work that I was hoping for, he also went above and beyond his responsibilities as my director by greatly assisting with other pragmatic details including the promotion of the show—which, for a solo piece, was paramount. Pete has an intuitive ability to know what needs to be done and a strong work ethic. He was completely invested every step of the way and I felt that I was working in a true partnership, and in fact, I have asked him to direct another run of the show. When he commits to a project he cares deeply about the quality of work that he helps to produce, and he throws incredible amounts of artistic energy into any project to which he commits. In fact, immediately after directing my show he moved to a large cast show and I witnessed him giving that show the same level of enthusiasm and heart that he gave me. For these reasons I have already recommended him to several other solo performers I know, and I also strongly recommend him to you. Pete is a theatre artist with real integrity, and that is a rare find. He is detail-oriented, innovative, and works magic on a budget. If I can provide any further information in support of his work, please do not hesitate to contact me. I am confident that he will bring his best to every project with which he is involved.
Elizabeth Whitney - Writer/Performer: Wonder Woman
I wanted the opportunity to work with Peter for years and finally had the good fortune to develop my Margo Rose Ferderer comedy reporter series together. Peter is an incredibly collaborative director. He helped me to trust my ideas and build on them. He is supportive and inspiring and together we created an authentic voice and sensibility for the character. His sense of humor is unique and infectious. He makes me laugh. And when we both laughed at a new idea, we knew we had a winner.
Peter brought his full attention to our work together. He is deeply resourceful as an ideas person and in creating additional support for the project. I highly recommend working with Peter Michael Marino.
Lori Hammel - Writer/Performer: Margo Rose Ferderer Web Series
There are some directors that can change who you are as a performer and allow you to grow in ways you could not imagine. Peter is this kind of director. He dedicates himself to every project he takes on and invests himself thoroughly, making the environment safe, nurturing, and full of possibilities. Peter is hands-on in every way, from lighting to promotional videos to props, even making some himself to make sure I concentrated on the performance itself. Peter directed my first two solo shows (an exciting and scary undertaking coming from performing in a group). He worked with me on each character not only bringing out the humor, but the natural truth behind who that character was and the beauty in each individual character. He is consistent in his energy and pushed me to go to places that I did not trust myself to go. He makes whomever he works with a better performer and the performance richer and more grounded. I consider myself very lucky that I had Peter to direct me through my shows and bring my work to a higher level. He makes you proud of what he does for you as a director, so you in turn want to make him proud as a performer. Anyone who works with Peter will grow, and become a more well-rounded performer. That, I believe is the essence of a great director, and a great person.
Alicia Levy - Writer/Performer: CHICKAPALOOZA
I cannot say enough wonderful things about working with Peter. I originally hired him to direct my show, as I had heard he was a great director, but I also discovered that he was also a gifted collaborator and developer. When we first started working together I was considering backing out of an upcoming production. I had lost confidence in my piece. It lacked focus and there were problems that I had no idea how to fix. The moment I began working with Peter he inspired confidence. He zeroed in immediately on what was at the heart of the piece and with his keen eye, amazing insight and understanding of structure I was able to draw out the most important aspects of my story and find the thru-line. And with his help he led me to find things in the material I didn’t even know were there. It was a truly collaborative effort and with lightness and humor and enduring support what could have a process filled with struggle and difficulty was incredibly joyful and fun.
Peter also has a special talent working with actors. As a solo show performer working with your own material you need someone who can work with you as a writer and performer. He has a way of supporting the things you do well and come more naturally and also assist you in going to places that are more challenging. He creates and really safe space and with his total confidence in your ability to do almost anything he gets you to take risks and tap into your unrealized potential. He drew me out as a performer and got me to bigger and bolder and funnier that I’ve ever been. I would recommend working with Peter to anyone!
Adelaide Mestre - Writer/Performer: Top Drawer
Peter's class was great, really Peter is one of the best teachers I have ever had. He gears his classes towards overcoming any weaknesses and more importantly fortifying their strengths as both a writer and performer. I really cannot write enough good things about Peter and I highly recommend his class. - SUE K.
This was the best class I’ve ever taken! I am shocked and amazed at how much I grew as a performance writer in just a short time! - CORA L.
Your encouragement, analysis, observations and sense of humor made the class. You understood me, my strengths and weaknesses, and provided me with useful exercises. Peter understands fun and understands people. - STEPHEN L. -
The man is an inspiration, a genius and a mensch. - BRADFORD S.
A great environment to explore this new, scary idea of writing solo performance material. I felt like I could try whatever I wanted out without ridicule or judgement. - SARAH P.
Peter is inspiring, and a great teacher. - LIZ J.
Peter is very adept at recognizing how to improve one's work and delivering constructive criticism in a way that instills confidence. I would recommend him without reservation. - ERIC S.
Peter’s charisma and positive energy was delightful. I had very little idea of a topic to elaborate on at the start of class, but Peter helped each one of us find our own specific story to tell. - FATI O.
Peter Marino is a wonderful, funny, insightful, dedicated instructor. I loved his class and would recommend it to many people. - JESSICA F.
Class really changed me. It’s the first time in a very long time that I felt like an artist. Wonderful teacher. - CHARLES S.
Fantastic! Your class was the jump-start that I personally needed to find courage on stage, confidence in myself, and trust in my words. - LEA R.