F30 Countdown – Geoffrey Goldberg & Joseph Olson

That’s right, we get to meet two artists for today’s countdown. And today marks twenty-two days until OOB begins. Mere coincidence? Absolutely. Don’t believe me? As long as you’re as pumped as I am to meet the creators of the short musical Everyday: A Subway Romance, you can believe whatever you like. Say hello to book writer and lyricist Geoffrey Goldberg and composer Joseph Olson.

Geoffrey Goldberg is a NYC-based Director, Choreographer, Writer, and Performer, having worked on Broadway, off-Broadway, regionally, and around the globe. As a composer/lyricist, Geoffrey has had his music and shows performed in cabarets and productions across the country including: The West Village Musical Theater Festival (Everyday; Winner, Best Original Lyrics, Best Musical); Kennedy Center Millenium Stage, D.C. (A Year On the Road) and on Broadway’s New Amsterdam Stage (Gypsy of the Year).  He is a current member of the Tony-award winning BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theater writing workshop in NYC, where he was awarded the Jean Banks award for his musical Everyday.  He is also a member of the Dramatist Guild, as well as a proud SDC and AEA member. 

Joseph Olson is the 2014 winner of the Jerry Harrington Talent Award from the BMI Workshop where he is a member of the Advanced Workshop. He has had compositions performed at the Caramoor Recital Series and LAM House Series. He is currently at work on a new musical. 


Here’s a little more about Geoffrey.

When did you start writing plays? If you had a moment where you realized you wanted to write, what was it?

I wrote a monologue in my senior year of High School, about a man who runs a pencil factory, that I then performed to critical acclaim (meaning my teachers liked it, and even a few kids who had previously called me names).  I then went on to write an original show with a bunch of students, about getting caught in a school gym during a hurricane.  Not as big of a hit.  I pursued performing for the next 10 years or so, and it wasn’t until I wrote three original songs for show I created at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC that I realized “holy moly, I love this…I want to do more of this!”

How did you come to write your OOB play? Was there a particular inspiration behind its creation? How has it developed?

Everyday was originally written as a 10-minute musical at BMI, during my first year, when I was paired up with Joseph Olson, who wrote the music.  We had fun playing with the glamorous, musical, internal world of two hopeless romantics, and shoving them into a harshly realistic situation like a subway car, and seeing how those world collide.

What are 5 words that describe who you are as a playwright?

Curious, adventurous, funny, visual, controlling.

What/who are some of the major influences on your writing?

Stephen Sondheim, definitely.  He is so specific, and daring, and understands form but knows how to turn it upside down.  Adam Guettel, poetic, glorious, but also just some wonderful words he creates!  Irving Berlin, his music is so accessible and yet so simple, and to the point.  I want to become as concise and accessible as that.

What’s one fact someone would never guess about you?

Oh jeez.  I do a TON of different things, from performing to directing to writing, to running my own advertisement company that creates original video content centered around song and dance.  Oh, and last year I choreographed a musical in Mongolia, in Mongolian.

What are some of your favorite plays?

Into The Woods, Company, 42nd Street, Proof, Dear Evan Hansen, Curious Incident

Any new projects you’re working on or shameless plugs?

Yes!  I am currently revising a show called A B C Dead, which is a dark musical comedy about a town where children are dying in alphabetical order of their first names, and three curious kids named Xander, Yolanda, and Zachary, set out to figure out what the hell is going on!  It’s been a complete blast writing, and sharing, it with audiences, and we are planning to have a full workshop this Fall.


Their musical Everyday: A Subway Romance will be performed on August 11th at 6:30pm. When two quirky hopeless romantics who ride the same subway car everyday finally muster the courage to say hello, their dreams and reality collide in this original 15-minute musical.  They quickly realize they are perfectly not right for each other, and their morning commute takes an unexpected (and hilarious) turn.