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A resident of NYC since 1994, Mark is a graduate of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy and the New School University with a BFA in Musical Theatre. A jack of all trades he has worked as a composer, performer, voice over artist, producer, house manager and mosaic artist. He and his partner Donald Garverick are the co-authors of the award winning original musical comedy Show Choir! -The Musical (FringeNYC '07, NYMF '10, Edinburgh Fringe '11, A.C.T. San Franciso '12) and Casual Bob (4@15 with NYU.) Their song "Stage Fright" from Show Choir! was recognized at the 2011 York Theater N.E.O. concert, celebrating New, Emerging, and Outstanding musical theatre writers in NYC.
Resident Judge / Director
In addition to The Cabaret Showdown, Donald splits his time between directing/choreographing and writing musicals with his partner, Mark McDaniels. Together, they have written Show Choir! - The Musical and Casual Bob. Recent director/choreographer credits include The Office: A Musical Parody (Off-Broadway, Jerry Orbach Theatre,) 90210! - The Musical (Off-Broadway, Theatre 80, and Chicago, Broadway Playhouse) To Dance! - The Musical (FringeNYC,) and Space Pirates of Planet Penzance (Oswego State Theatre.) Recent choreography credits include The Red Shoes from An Evening with Kathryn Morgan (Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Playhouse Square,) Siren's Heart: The Marilyn Monroe Musical (Off-Broadway at Actor's Temple,) and Before God Was Invented: A Prehistoric Pagan Parable (Theatre for the New City.) Donald is a member of MAC and BMI.
Assaf was born and raised in Tel Aviv, Israel. In 2007, Gleizner moved to the United States, where he received a scholarship to earn his BMus in jazz performance at SUNY Purchase. Assaf has since played in a number of venues throughout the tri-state such as Smalls Jazz Club, Dizzy’s Coca Cola Club and Birdland, along with many others. As a sideman, he performed and toured throughout Western New York and Canada, playing and arranging for the award winning singer Cyrille Aimee. Together, they were guest artists for the company: “Les 7 doigts de la main”, a Montreal based circus troupe. As a Musical Director, Assaf worked with Fordham University’s Theater club, “Splinter Group” on three original revues and one original full length musical, 1998 Degrees. In 2010, Assaf joined the Stage Left Children’s Theater Team as the Musical director. Most recently, Assaf has formed the group Trio Shalva with fellow Israeli musicians.
Diana Van Decker Byrne
Diana, is thrilled to be part of the cast at the Cabaret Showdown as DiVanna. Credits include; Choreography for Mimi and Gustav- a children's musical, and Issac Babel and the Gangster King. (Horse Trade Theater Group productions) Site specific work includes: East Village Fragments, in the role of Mary, and West Village Fragments/ensemble. (Peculiar Works Project theater group). Diana has performed in several dance productions, and can be found most often in the dance studio doing what she loves.