Glenn Slater is a Grammy-winning lyricist best known for his work in musicals for both the stage and screen. A frequent collaborator of Alan Menken, he's co-written songs for multiple Disney projects, including Broadway's The Little Mermaid and the animated film Tangled.
Born in Brooklyn, New York and raised in East Brunswick, New Jersey, Slater graduated from Harvard, where he composed for the university's Hasty Pudding Theatricals as a student. He went on to write lyrics for the off-Broadway musical comedy revue Newyorkers in 2001. Slater's first collaboration with legendary Disney composer Alan Menken came in 2004 with the animated feature Home on the Range.
The pair worked together again on the 2006 stage musical Sister Act (which premiered on the West End in 2009 and reached Broadway in 2011). When Disney was adapting The Little Mermaid for the stage, Slater was enlisted to provide additional lyrics since the 1989 film's lyricist, Howard Ashman, died in 1991. The musical had its official Broadway opening in January 2008, and its score earned a Tony nomination for Menken, Ashman, and Slater. That same year saw a New York festival premiere of Beatsville, a musical based on the 1959 Roger Corman film A Bucket of Blood. It featured book, music, and lyrics by Slater and his wife, Wendy Leigh Wilf. Slater collaborated with none other than Andrew Lloyd Webber on Love Never Dies, a 2010 sequel to The Phantom of the Opera. (Segments were rewritten several months later by lyricist Charles Hart as part of a widespread revamping). Meanwhile, Slater and Menken reunited for a 2010 stage musical version of the 1992 film Leap of Faith (it opened on Broadway in 2012), and the songwriting team wrote tunes for the Disney animated film Tangled, also from 2010. Its "I See the Light" won them a Grammy for Best Song Written for Visual Media.
Sister Act then earned Slater his second Tony nomination after opening on Broadway, and he was nominated for an Emmy for a song for the 2012 sitcom The Neighbors. He and Lloyd Webber partnered again for School of Rock, which opened on Broadway in 2015. The show garnered another Tony nomination for Slater. He and Menken then provided songs for the ABC musical fantasy series Galavant, which ran for 18 episodes in 2015 and 2016. They also shared executive producer credits with the show's creator, Dan Fogelman, and its soundtrack was made available by Hollywood Records. Also featuring songs by Slater and Menken, an adaptation of a one-man show by actor Chazz Palminteri, A Bronx Tale: The Musical, opened on Broadway in December 2016. ~ Marcy Donelson