John Thorn is a composer, pianist, singer, songwriter, teacher and music director to the stars.
Musical Theatre/Cabaret Composition/Musical Direction
I've had many highlights in the music theatre and cabaret world including writing 5 musicals and scoring, arranging and producing dozens of cabaret shows. I'm always keen to collaborate with new artists and use my experience to complete a project successfully. I am open to all projects big or small so feel free to contact me for a chat.
I’ve been a working professional musician since I was 16. At 17 I ran my own wedding band and led Melbourne's top original jazz group Neo-Penguin when I was 18. I been band leader for hundreds of events and corporate functions and have connections with the finest musicians around the world. I can book and arrange any size combos from myself as a solo singer/pianist through to duos with my daughter Bonnie, trios and quartets featuring guitarists and bass to my swinging 5 piece John Thorn and the Roses. If you want a brassy latin sound the 7 piece "Muchachas", the backing combo for Pastel Vespa are the go or I can also get a full 10-17 piece Big Band together for the Big Occasion.
Teaching and Mentoring in Piano, Composition and accompanying
I’ve taught piano and composition at many institutions and schools. Many students have gone on to professional careers including Ollie McGill (Cat Empire) and TV comedian/pianist Sammy J. I have lectured at Monash University, NMIT and was musical director for the 2016 VCA production of "Oh What A Lovely War". I am very keen to share my knowledge in private lessons, group workshops and larger talks. One speciality is impro singing and my workshops in this subject are attended by leading comedians and music theatre stars.
I’ve been busy in the music industry arranging music for pratically every combination of instruments including concert celebrations of Henry Mancini, The Music of James Bond, Serge Gainsbourg, Kurt Weill as well as Big Band arrangements of original and standard repertoire songs. With Gavin Cornish and Fiona Thorn I made lounge cover versions of rock songs for the international Cabaret act Pastel Vespa. I can prepare any backing tracks from piano accompaniments to full orchestral backings can produce charts for any occasion including Film Scores. I pride myself on my accuracy, speed and quality for any job.
Piano accompanying, vocal preparation for exams and auditions
I’ve accompanied many of Australia's great performers as well as international artistes in practically every genre from opera to country and blues with plenty of jazz and music theatre thrown in as well. I have successfully prepared actors for auditions and accompanied students of all abilities in their exams. I enjoy playing for choirs and singalongs wherever there's an enthusiastic gathering. Wedding ceremonies and receptions are a speciality too.