Kevin Newbury is a theatre, opera, film and event director based in New York City. Kevin has directed over seventy original productions and his work has been presented by many opera companies, festivals, theatres and symphonies including the Park Avenue Armory, Carnegie Hall, The Kennedy Center, San Francisco Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, The Santa Fe Opera, Barcelona Liceu, Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Minnesota Opera, The San Francisco Symphony, L'Opera de Montreal, The Prototype Festival, Urban Arias (DC), Bard Summerscape, Portland Opera, Opera Philadelphia, Philadelphia Orchestra, Seattle Opera, Glimmerglass Opera, Cincinnati Opera, The Virginia Arts Festival, The Wexford Festival in Ireland, American Repertory Theatre, and Center Theatre Group, among many others.
Kevin is especially committed to developing and directing new work. He has directed over two dozen world premiere operas and plays, many of which were subsequently published or recorded. Recent world premiere highlights include Spears/Pierce's FELLOW TRAVELERS (Cincinnati Opera, Prototype Festival/NYC and Lyric Opera of Chicago, upcoming: Arizona Opera), Bates/Campbell's THE (R)EVOLUTION OF STEVE JOBS (Santa Fe Opera, Indiana University, Seattle Opera, upcoming: San Francisco Opera, GRAMMY Winner: Best Opera Recording), Todd Almond's KANSAS CITY CHOIR BOY (starring Almond and Courtney Love, NYC, Boston, LA and Miami), Spears/Vavrek's O COLUMBIA (Houston Grand Opera), Puts/Campbell's THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE and Cuomo/Shanley's DOUBT (Minnesota Opera), Lopez/Cruz's BEL CANTO (Lyric Opera of Chicago, broadcast on PBS' Great Performances), Morrison/Cox's OSCAR (Santa Fe Opera and Opera Philadelphia), Spratlan's Pulitzer Prize-winning LIFE IS A DREAM (Santa Fe Opera) Rodewald/Di Novelli’s THE GOOD SWIMMER (BAM Next Wave Festival) and James/Douglas’ THE NINTH HOUR at Met Live Arts at the Cloisters.
Kevin’s production of FELLOW TRAVELERS was named "One of the Best Classical Music Events of 2016" by The New York Times and the New Yorker named the commercial recording "One of the Best Classical CDs of 2017." His production of VIRGINIA for the Wexford Opera Festival won the 2010 Irish Times Theatre Award for Best New Opera Production and his productions of OSCAR, BEL CANTO, and THE (R)EVOLUTION OF STEVE JOBS were all nominated for "Best World Premiere" at the International Opera Awards, three years in a row. His co-production of NORMA at Canadian Opera Company won three Dora Awards (Best Costume Design, Best Set Design, Best Female Performance). His work has also been nominated for a Grammy Award (BERNSTEIN'S MASS with Marin Alsop, also named “One of the Best Events of the Year” by The New York Times and The Washington Post for the Carnegie Hall and Kennedy Center iterations in 2008 and by The Chicago Tribune for the 2018 Ravinia Festival production), a Drama Desk Award (Best Actor: Vince Gatton, CANDY & DOROTHY) and the GLAAD Media Award (Winner: CANDY & DOROTHY, Nominated KISS AND CRY). Kevin's first two short films, MONSURA IS WAITING and STAG, have screened at a total of forty film festivals and have each several won festival awards. MONSURA IS WAITING and STAG are both available on iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon, and his third, EPIPHANY V, a music video collaboration with Jimmy Lopez and David Johnson, is streaming for free on youtube in an effort to bring classical music to a wider audience.
As an event director, Kevin directed the Park Avenue Armory’s annual gala three years in a row (2015-2017) and returns again to direct 2019’s gala. He also directed the 2019 BAM Gala.
He has collaborated with many top artists in multiple mediums including (in addition the writers listed above): Bradley Cooper, Carey Mulligan, Roland Orzabal/Tears for Fears, Courtney Love, Ricky Ian Gordon, Patti Lupone, Joyce Di Donato, Sondra Radvanovsky, John Adams, Yannick Nézet-Séguin, Kimbra, Dawn Upshaw, Denyce Graves, The Young Professionals and Tracy K. Smith, just to name a few.
Upcoming projects include the world premiere of Spears/Smith’s CASTOR & PATIENCE at Cincinnati Opera, LA FAVORITE at Houston Grand Opera, a revival of his 2018 production of BERNSTEIN’S MASS for The Ravinia Festival, Salmond/KIng’s new musical EIGHTY-SIXED and a new television project created with Jeremy J. King and James Onstad.
Kevin was raised in Maine, graduated from Bowdoin College and spent a year at Oxford University.