David Reiffel

Assistant Professor
Affiliated Departments

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In addition to teaching at Berklee, David Reiffel creates music, words, and sound for theater in the Boston area and across the U.S. He has written over 20 musicals, many of them created during his time as resident composer for Cornerstone Theater Company, which settled in small towns to create musical adaptations of classic plays through working with local artists and actors. 

Most recently, his musical Glory received a workshop production at the Moonbox Boston New Works Festival in 2023. Previously, he wrote lyrics and cowrote a book for the musical Cupcake. He is also active as a theatrical sound designer, stage director, and musical director.

Career Highlights:

  • Founding member, Cornerstone Theater Company, Los Angeles; original composer in residence and sound designer
  • Composer/sound designer, Twelfth Night and Shakespeare in Love (national premiere), Oregon Shakespeare Festival, 2016–2017
  • Lyricist/colibrettist, Cupcake, GBA Productions at Club Café, 2012 and 2018
  • Composer, lyricist, and librettist, Glory, Moonbox Productions, 2023
  • Program director, New Opera and Musical Theater Initiative (NOMTI)


  • Elliott Norton Award for Outstanding Musical Direction, Man of La Mancha (New Repertory Theater) and Shakespeare in Love (SpeakEasy Stage), 2018
  • Independent Reviewers of New England nominee for Best New Play, The Rag Doll (music/lyrics), commissioned by Blue Spruce Theater Company, 2013
In Their Own Words

“Musical theater is potentially one of the most subtle and exciting ways to tell a story, to move the listener to a new world. It’s an incredibly tough medium to work in: the intersection of so many moving parts is surprisingly delicate for a genre that is often considered easy and light. My work is to help students find their own way of communicating what is most important to them through a deep study and practice of this multifaceted art form.”

“I have been writing music and musical theater almost all of my life. I’m a practicing artist with real-world experience in the collaboration necessary to bring musical theater to the stage. I’ve acted, directed, written books, music, and lyrics—and even choreographed a little. I bring all this experience to the classroom, where I try to teach not so much what works, but rather how writers can bring their unique best to the stage.”