John O’May is one of Australia’s most experienced actors, and his career in the entertainment industry encompasses musical theatre, cabaret, drama, opera, concerts, comedy, radio, writing and directing.
John began his career in 1972 in the original Australian production of Godspell. Since then he has performed in over 50 productions both on stage and the screen. Although there are many memorable highlights from his work with Playbox and both the Melbourne and Sydney Theatre Companies, he is probably best known for his portrayal of Che in the original Australian production of Evita, and Monsieur Andre, a role he played for three years in the original Australian production of The Phantom of The Opera.
His other theatre credits include No, No Nanette (WA Theatre Company), Blue Window, Beyond Therapy, Sexual Perversity In Chicago and The Ripper Show (Playbox), A Couple Of Strangers (Nimrod), Captain Corcoran in HMS Pinafore with Paul Eddington (VSO), Paris in La Belle Helene (VSO), Mr Peachum in The Threepenny Opera opposite Robyn Archer (West Australian Opera), Count Danilo Danilovich opposite Marina Prior in The Merry Widow (Essgee), Bela Zangler in Crazy For You (GFO) and Harry Bright in Mamma Mia! John participated in the workshop of the new Australian work Dreamsong, toured internationally as Cardinal Felici in The Last Confession opposite David Suchet, and played the roles of Georges in La Cage aux Folles, Captain Bracket in the acclaimed Opera Australia production of South Pacific, Priam in Paris – The Concert Version, Herr Schultz in Cabaret and Sergeant Farratt in The Dressmaker.
John is also proud of his six Sondheim musicals: Company (as Bobby), Follies (Ben), Assassins (Booth), Into the Woods (Baker), A Little Night Music (Frederick Egerman, Green Room Award winner) and Passion (Dr Tambourri). For The Production Company, John has performed in Funny Girl (Nick Arnstein), Kiss Me Kate (General Harrison Howell), Anything Goes (Elisha Whitney), Grey Gardens (Major Bouvier/Norman Vincent Peale) and, most recently, Ragtime (Henry Ford).
His directing credits include The Light in The Piazza, Summer Rain, The Witches of Eastwick, Seven Little Australians the Musical (in which he also starred) and he was Artistic Director of Arena Theatre. John has devised and performed in cabaret venues with Three Vile Men (Green Room Award), Oh Johnny, O’May Sings Mercer, Being Alive and Love.War.Death.Brel.
Concerts that John has featured in include Bernstein’s Mass, the 50th anniversary of Carols by Candlelight and Dr Pangloss in Candide.
He has appeared in many television programs and mini-series including City Homicide, The Games, State Coroner, Good Guys, Bad Guys, Carson’s Law, The Flying Doctors, The Lancaster-Miller Affair, Cluedo, Cop Shop, The Four Minute Mile. On film, John has appeared in Between Wars, Starstruck, Rebel, Georgia, A Heartbeat Away and, opposite Marina Prior and Lisa McCune, The Divorce for the ABC and Australian Opera.
John has been a proud member of Australian Actors Equity since 1972.