Simon Gallaher


Gallaher is a theatrical star, a singer, a musician, pianist, a hit songwriter, and most recently a respected theatrical producer and entrepreneur. He started his entrepreneurial exploits by endeavouring to promote his own career as a performer as early as 1977 when he staged his first concert season in his home town of Brisbane. As no promoter was interested in Gallaher's potential, he decided to risk all in an attempt to showcase his talent to a local public who had some knowledge of the young singer from his earlier television show which he hosted for 2 years from the age of 15.

Only months after his successful concert debut (he covered his costs), Gallaher's career was launched nationally through the highly successful The Mike Walsh Show followed quickly by a tour across Australia with Hollywood legend Debbie Reynolds. Suddenly thousands of viewers around Australia discovered the talent of this young Queenslander and he quickly won the hearts of Australians eager to see his concerts and buy his recordings. Recordings were to be his next entrepreneurial venture as he could not find a record company willing to take the risk. Five Gold albums later his career and entrepreneurial skill were starting to show results.

In 1982 Gallaher became the youngest entertainer to be given his own night-time television variety show running for 2 successful seasons on ABC-TV. At 23 years of age Gallaher had cut a swathe through the Australian entertainment scene winning enough awards to be the envy of any seasoned performer....... a TV-Logie Award; 3 Mo Variety Awards, A Queenslander of the Year; twice voted Queensland's Entertainer of Year, and an Advance Australia Award for his contribution to entertainment.

In 1984 Gallaher made the transition to the stage in the Australian production of the Broadway smash hit "The Pirates of Penzance" playing the role of Frederic. Together with Jon English he played for almost 3 years and over 700 performances in one of the most successful musical productions in Australian history. As an actor he has also performed as Cornelius in "Hello Dolly"; the title role of Karl Franz in the Lyric Opera's revival of "The Student Prince"; Freddie Eynsford-Hill in the hit revival of "My Fair Lady" and more recently in creating the roles of Nanki-Poo in his company's production of The Mikado, Ralph Rackstraw in his company's production of HMS Pinafore and romantic tenor Camille in Essgee's two productions of The Merry Widow.

In 1992 Gallaher's company again took on the entrepreneurial task of a national capital city tour entitled An Unforgettable Evening combining his talents with Australian singer Julie Anthony, conductor Tommy Tycho and the symphony orchestra in each city's major concert hall. After this success he was determined to make his ultimate dream a reality by recreating The Pirates of Penzance. with himself and Jon English in a new 1990's version. Unable to raise any investment money this make or break venture was an overwhelming success grossing millions of dollars, A TV audience of over 2,000,000 people, a triple-platinum video as well as an Aria Award. In 1995 Essgee Entertainment and the Pirates creative team brought a new version of The Mikado to the stage to more critical acclaim and a loyal audience hungry for this fresh approach to musical theatre.

In 1996 Gallaher formed Essgee Entertainment New Zealand Limited to stage the first international production of his Mikado. This took New Zealand by storm and within six months staged a new production of The Pirates especially for New Zealand. The formula again proved to be a winner. Simon did not perform in the New Zealand versions of his productions which gave him more opportunity to spend with his young family. In November of that year Essgee Entertainment commenced rehearsals for the final in what is now referred to as Essgee's Musical Trilogy. HMS Pinafore opened at the Victorian Arts Centre on 2nd January 1997 with Gallaher returning to play the romantic lead Ralph Rackstraw. His latest entrepeanurial venture is video production with his New Zealand company embarking on full scale television productions of both The Mikado and HMS Pinafore to follow the success of The Pirates of Penzance produced by ABC-TV. The video of The Mikado was released in 1997 and by Christmas of that year it too had gone Platinum in Australia. HMS Pinafore (the final video in the series) has recently gone Platinum and the series has now been released as a special Trilogy Set. In 1999 Gallaher sang the role of Camille in his new production of The Merry Widow at the same time as his company was also producing the highly acclaimed play Master Class with Amanda Muggleton as well as A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum starring Jon English and the Pirates team.The year 2000 celebrated Gallaher's 25th anniversary in showbusiness and he toured nationally in concert for the first time in many years to mark this occasion as well as releasing a commemorative CD with ABC Music. * Collection of pics marking Simon's 25 years in Showbiz.

Simon returned to the musical stage in 2001 to recreate his role of Frederic in his new anniversary production of The Pirates of Penzance which played through until 2003 marking a 20 year period since first performing the show with Jon English. He and his organisation along with composer Michael Harvey produced a new $6 Million Australian musical entitled EUREKA which opened in Melbourne in October 2004 to rave reviews. 2005 saw Simon return to the concert stage once more but this time joining forces with Julie Anthony in a special show written for them entitled Together At Last. They continued to tour extensively together in 2006/07 with touring engagements in every Australian state and territory and released a successful CD under the same title.

Gallaher announced a new initiative for his company, producing a series of music-theatre workshops for kids and students entitled Showstoppers which commenced in Brisbane in January 2007. It was an immense success with further workshops and events planned. Gallaher has recently been appointed to the Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC) Board of Trustees. 2008 commenced with some special concerts featuring himself, Julie Anthony and the Queensland Pops Orchestra which were met with much acclaim and great success attracting standing ovations from capacity audiences. Simon and his production company have recently embarked on their newest musical production with a revised version of his highly acclaimed version of The Mikado. This is playing in Australia through 2008 and 2009.