June 16, 1964
Mt. Kisco, New York, United States
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Celebrated stage actor Danny Burstein reaped critical praise and multiple Tony nominations for starring and supporting roles in many major Broadway productions, including "The Drowsy Chaperone" (2006), "South Pacific" in 2008, and a 2016 production of "Fiddler on the Roof." Born June 16, 1964 in Mt. Kisco, New York, Burstein was raised by his mother, a painter, and his stepfather, a professor of Greek philosophy. Burstein wanted to be an actor from an early age, and after appearing in a student production of "The Me Nobody Knows" at Parsons Junior High School in Queens, a teacher recommended that he audition for the High School of the Performing Arts. From a pool of 4,000 candidates, Burstein was one of 128 selected to study there; upon graduation, he enrolled at Queens College, where his father was among the faculty. There, he was mentored by Ed Greenberg, the director of the St. Louis Municipal Opera, who gave him his first professional stage role as a chorus member for a production of "The Music Man." Burstein headed west for his master's degree in acting from the University of California, San Diego before embarking on his career on the New York stage. Almost immediately, he began appearing in both Broadway and Off-Broadway productions, including "A Little Hotel on the Side" in 1992, revivals of "The Seagull" and "Saint Joan" in 1992 and 1993, respectively, and "Company" in 1995. His screen career also began during this period, and grew from minor parts on television series like "Third Watch" (NBC, 1999-2005) to supporting appearances on "Absolutely Fabulous" (BBC, 1992-2012) and features like "Transamerica" (2005). The following year, Burstein earned his first Tony nomination as the would-be Latin lover Adolpho in the hit musical comedy "The Drowsy Chaperone" (2006), which preceded a string of critically praised appearances in popular productions: he earned his second Tony nod as Luther Billings in a 2008 revival of "South Pacific," which was soon followed by nominations for "Follies" in 2012 and "Golden Boy" in 2013. During this period, Burstein also enjoyed a recurring role on "Boardwalk Empire" (HBO, 2010-2014) as casino owner Lolly Steinman. In 2014, Burstein reaped his fifth Tony nomination as Herr Schultz in the long-running revival of "Cabaret" while also making his opera debut in a production of "Die Fledermaus" at the Metropolitan Opera. Burstein's remarkable streak of successes continued the following year with featured roles in Michael Mann's "Blackhat" (2015) and Jason Bateman's directorial debut "The Family Fang" (2015) with Nicole Kidman. In 2016, Burstein received his sixth Tony nomination as Tevye in "Fiddler on the Roof," which also brought him a third Outer Critics Circle Award.