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Kenny Ortega

Director

Producer

SPEAKER

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Bio

Kenny Ortega is a multi award-winning director, choreographer, and producer. 

One of the top creatives in television and film today, Ortega is known for the “High School Musical” franchise, which earned him a Primetime Emmy and Directors Guild of America Award. He is also the executive producer for the film’s multi-platinum soundtracks. In 2008, Ortega directed and executive produced “High School Musical 3: Senior Year (HSM 3)” for Walt Disney Motion Pictures. “HSM 3” was the biggest theatrical box office opening for a musical in history.

Widely acclaimed for his genre-bending work in musicals, drama, comedy, and family programs, Ortega has directed and/or choreographed international phenomenon’s including the “Descendants” trilogy, “Newsies,” “Hocus Pocus,” “Dirty Dancing,” “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” and “Pretty in Pink,” among others. 

In 2020, Netflix released his most recent directorial project “Julie and the Phantoms,” a family musical television series and the first title of his new multi-year deal with the streamer. 

In 2019, Ortega directed “Descendants 3,” the third installment of the widely successful Disney Channel trilogy. In 2017, the “Descendants 2” Soundtrack debuted at #1 on iTunes. Other recent work include “A Change of Heart” (winner of the OUTshine Film Festival Audience Award for Best Feature),“The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again” for FOX (which premiered during Halloween 2016), and The Hocus Pocus 25th Anniversary Special for Freeform.

Also in 2019, Ortega was honored with a star on the Walk of Fame and received the prestigious Disney Legends Award. In 2002, Ortega was honored with Directing and Choreography Emmy awards for his work as supervising chorographer and co-artistic director of the Salt Lake Olympic Ceremonies and in 1996, earned an Emmy and American Choreography award for for the Atlanta Olympic Ceremonies. 

Ortega has also received two Director’s Guild of America Awards, The Fred & Adele Astaire Lifetime Achievement Award, Bob Fosse Award, American Choreography Lifetime Achievement Award, MTV Video Music Award, American Music Award, Billboard Award, ALMA Award, Nosotros Golden Eagle Award, Imagen Creative Achievement Award, and an NAACP Image Award, among others.  

Resume

Television
Rocky Horror Picture Show
Director/Choreographer
FOX
Descendants II
Director/Choreographer
Disney Channel
Descendants
Director/Choreographer
Disney Channel
So You Think You Can Dance
FOX (Judge)
FOX
Super Bowl XXX
Choreographer
World Cup Opening
Choreographer
High School Musical I and II
Director/Choreographer
Disney Channel
Cheetah Girls II
Director/Choreographer
Disney Channel
2002 Salt Lake City Olympics / Opening and Closing Ceremonies
Choreographer
1996 Atlanta Olympics / Opening and Closing Ceremonies
Choreographer
Chicago Hope
Choreographer
CBS (Multiple Episodes)
BRIT Awards w/ Michael Jackson
Producer/Staging
2005 Super Bowl Pre & Half-Time Show w/ Paul McCartney
Choreographer
39 Productions, Inc.
2004 Super Bowl Pre & Half-Time Show w/ Janet Jackson & Justin Timberlake
Prod./Choreographer
Don Mischer Productions
ABC 50th Anniversary
Choreographer/Musical Segment
Prod. Don Mischer Productions
Michael Jackson "Dangerous"
Conceived & Dir. Stage Prod.
HBO
Gloria Estefan
Director/Choreographer/Stage Producer
HBO
Cher "Heart of Stone"
Director/Choreographer/Stage Producer
HBO
Smokey Robinson
Choreographer
NBC
Mickey's 60th Birthday
Choreographer
Disney
Totally Minnie
Choreographer
Disney
1986-89 American Music Awards w/ Cher
Choreographer
Dick Clark Productions / ABC
Film
The Descendants 1, 2,3
Director/Choreographer
Disney Channel
Michael Jackson: This Is It
Director
Colombia Pictures
High School Musical 3
Director/Choreographer
Disney
Hocus Pocus
Director/Choreographer
Disney
Newsies
Director/Choreographer
Disney
Ferris Bueller's Day Off
Choreographer
Paramount
Quest For Camelot
Choreographer
Warner Brothers
To Wong Foo?
Choreographer
Universal Pictures
Dirty Dancing
Choreographer
Vestron
Road House
Choreographer
20th Century Fox
Shag
Choreographer
Hemdale
The Great Outdoors
Choreographer
Universal/MCA
The Lost Boys
Choreographer
Warner Brothers
Pretty In Pink
Choreographer
Paramount
Salsa
Choreographer
Cannon
God Created Woman
Choreographer
Vestron
One From The Heart
Choreographer
Zoetrope
St. Elmo's Fire
Choreographer
Paramount
Xanadu
Choreographer
Universal Pictures
The Rose
Choreographer
20th Century Fox
Live Stage
Lake of Dreams
Director
Wynn-Las Vegas
The Rolling Stones "50 & Counting" Tour
Director of Choreography/Consultant
AEG Live
Macau Fountains "Wet"
Choreographer
Wynn Las Vegas
Encore Hotel Opening
Creative Director
Boston
High School Musical Tour Fall 2006
Director/Choreographer
Buena Vista Music Group
Wynn Hotel and Resort
Prod./Director
Synn Design & Development
Gloria Estefan at Caesar's Palace
Director/Choreographer
Estefan Enterprises
Sirens of TI
Prod./Director
Treasure Island
Siegfried & Roy / Closing Number
Choreographer
Feld Entertainment
High School Musical On Ice
Producer
Feld Entertainment
Bellagio Opening
Choreographer
Bellagio Hotel & Casino / Las Vegas
Michael Jackson "HIStory" Tour 1996-97
Conceived/Director/Choreographer
Michael Jackson "Dangerous" Tour 1992-93
Conceived/Director/Choreographer
Hannah Montana / Miley Cyrus "Best of Both Worlds" Tour
Director
Barbra Streisand "Timeless"
Choreographer
1999 Las Vegas / 2000 Australia
Shakira 1998 Tour
Choreographer
Lorrie Morgan 1994-98 US Tours
Director/Choreographer
Mindy McCrady 1997 US Tour
Choreographer
Pointer Sisters 1986-89 Tours
Choreographer
Chaka Khan 1988-89 World tour
Director/Choreographer
Diana Ross 1988 Tour
Choreographer
Bette Midler Special Material
Choreographer
Oingo Boingo 1986-87 US Tours
Director/Choreographer
Olivia Newton-John 1981 World Tour
Director/Choreographer
KISS 1980 World Tour
Director/Choreographer
The Tubes 1975-85 World Tours
Director/Choreographer
Music Videos
Miami Sound Machine "Rhythm is Gonna Get You"
Director/Choreographer
Gloria Estefan "Coming Out Of The Dark"
Director/Choreographer
Gloria Estefan "Seal Our Fate"
Director/Choreographer
Selena "A Boy Like That"
Director/Choreographer
Selena "Techno Cumbia
Choreographer
Cher "I Found Someone" / "We All Sleep Alone"
Director/Choreographer
Cher "Heart of Stone" / "Turn Back Time"
Choreographer
Tubes "She's A Beauty"
Director/Choreographer
Tubes "Completion Backwards Principal"
Choreographer
Pointer Sisters "I'm So Excited" / "Back in My Arms" / "I'm So Excited"
Director/Choreographer
Gladys Knight & The Pips "Save the Overtime"
Director/Choreographer
Chayanne "Este Rytmo Baila Asi"
Director/Choreographer
Denise Williams "Let's Hear It For The Boys"
Director/Choreographer
Madonna "Material Girl"
Choreographer
Diana Ross "Experience"
Choreographer
Kim Carnes "One Divided Heart"
Choreographer
Rod Stewart "Young Turks, Love Touch"
Choreographer
Paul Jabara "Ochos Rios"
Choreographer
Neil Diamond "Headed for the Future"
Choreographer
Elton John "Word in Spanish"
Choreographer
Billy Joel "Allentown"
Choreographer
Fleetwood Mac "Gypsy"
Choreographer
Toto "Rosanna"
Choreographer
Award Shows
2000 Academy Awards
Choreographer
ABC

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