Featured Alumni Profiles

Elena Shaddow

BMus '01, Vocal Performance/Music Theatre

“I’ve always known that I wanted to sing, act, and dance, and when it was time to consider colleges, I knew I had to be in New York City, the heart of the American theatre scene. NYU’s location, combined with the School’s renowned music programs and solid liberal arts foundation, seemed ideal for me. Since I love to sing classically, I initially specialized in classical voice but then I switched to music theatre to incorporate all methods of performance into my program, including acting and dancing, as well as stage production and the history and business of music theatre. At NYU, I performed in fully staged productions under the guidance of directors, choreographers, conductors, designers, and guest artists who are active on and off Broadway. With such intense instruction and support from my professors, I knew I was ready to audition for Broadway musicals in my senior year. Since I graduated, I've understudied the role of Cosette in the popular production of Les Miserables, I've had a lead part oppostie John Lithgow in the Broadway production of Sweet Smell of Success, and I've just been cast in the lead role opposite Hollywood star Antonio Banderas in the Broadway resurrection of the hit Nine."


Elena Shaddow graduated from NYU in 2001 with a major in vocal performance and a specialization in music theatre. She landed a part as Cosette in the Broadway production of Les Miserables during her senior year at NYU Steinhardt Music. Right after gaduation she was cast as Abigail Barclay and understudy to Susan in Sweet Smell of Success. Additional Broadway credits include Laura Fairlie in Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Woman in White, and Hodel in Fiddler on the Roof, and Claudia in Nine with Antonio Banderas.

In London's own Broadway, West End, Elena was cast as Magnolia in Show Boat at the Royal Albert Hall. Elena was also cast as Clara Johnson in the national tour of The Light in the Piazza for which she was nominated for the 2007 Helen Hayes Outstanding Lead Actress Award.

Elena's regional theatre credits include Lili in Carnival! (Paper Mill Playhouse), Cecily in The Importance of Being Earnest (Shakespeare Theatre of NJ), Viola in Illyria (Shakespeare Theatre of NJ) and Lupita in Senior Discretion Himself (The Arena Stage), for which she was nominated for the 2005 Helen Hayes Outstanding Lead Actress Award.

Elena is married to director/choreographer and NYU Steinhardt Music Theatre alumnus, Michael Harrington.