The Show Must Go On
Financial planner Ken Mahoney moonlights as an award-winning Broadway producer.
Ken Mahoney with American Idol star Constantine Maroulis during rehearsal for a benefit concert at Tarrytown Music Hall earlier this year.
Walk into Ken Mahoney’s White Plains office, and it’s clear there’s more going on than just financial planning. Photos of Mahoney at the Tony Awards and Grammy Awards line the walls, and his desk is topped with issues of Playbill. That’s because the North Salem resident is also an award-winning producer on top of running a successful investment firm.
“Years ago, I struck up a friendship with a father at my son’s baseball games who turned out to be Frank Wildhorn, the composer behind Broadway’s Jekyll & Hyde, as well as other musicals,” says Mahoney, a lifelong Westchesterite. “He needed someone with my finance background to assist on the business side of his productions.” Within his first year as co-producer, Mahoney won a Tony for Best Musical Revival for Porgy & Bess. “They say Wall Street is a small street. Well, then, Broadway is an alley, because within a year, I knew the top producers, and they knew me,” he explains.
Mahoney has since produced 12 Broadway shows, winning another Tony in 2013 for Pippin. He’s also produced albums, two of which — Matilda and Nice Work If You Can Get It — were nominated for Grammys, and he’s a producer on TV’s Due Process, winner of three Emmys.
“A good producer stays out of the way of the director, choreographer, and actors,” says Mahoney. “We’re there to support their art. My job is to find backers who understand it’s a risky investment — typically, only one in four shows make money — but who enjoy the opening nights and the backstage perks.”
Since 2005, Mahoney — who boasts more than 28 years of retirement-planning experience — has been founder, president, and CEO of Mahoney Asset Management, which provides detailed performance analysis and investment recommendations for those leaving the workforce, purchasing a second home, or planning for retirement. He says that while Mahoney Asset Management takes up about 90 percent of his time, he has found a way to incorporate his theater connections.
“I do Mahoney Asset Management client-appreciation events, in which I take them to dinner, see a show and then backstage to see the costumes, meet the cast, or take pictures onstage,” says Mahoney. “Ultimately, when you talk about money with clients, you’re actually talking about life. I learn about my clients’ hobbies, and they learn about mine. I don’t have a golf club; I have my Playbills.”