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Philip Casnoff (born 3 August 1949 in Philadelphiamarker) is a Golden Globe Award nominated, Theater World Award winning Americanmarker actor, known for his roles in TV series and on Broadway.


Casnoff began his career touring in the 1972–73 national company of Godspell where he understudied Jesus and Judas. He was cast as understudy for the title role in the 1976 Broadwaymarker production of Rockabye Hamlet, a rock musical version of Shakespeare's play, but the show closed after only seven performances.

In 1988, Casnoff starred as Freddie Trumper, an arrogant American professional chess player in the short-lived Broadway production of the musical Chess and received warm reviews for his performance. "Remarkably fine", wrote New York Post, "does justice to the role", commented New York Daily News, "wonderful singing", mentioned The New Yorker. It brought Casnoff Theater World Award for Best Debut Performance.

Casnoff created the lead role of John Blackmore in the Shogun: The Musical (1990), based on the popular book and miniseries by James Clavell. During the previews of the show, he suffered minor injury when struck by a piece of scenery but quickly recuperated and returned to the performances after just one day-off. The production, unfortunately, survived only for 12 previews and 72 performances, but Casnoff received a lot of critical acclaim. "Mr. Casnoff had the swaggering self-assurance of a star in complete command of a vast production", wrote Frank Rich in The New York Times.

He returned to Broadway as Billy Flynn in the musical Chicago on Jan. 15, 2007 succeeding Huey Lewis in the role and stayed with the production through March 25, 2007.


Casnoff's first major role was that of Elkanah Bent in the popular 1985 miniseries North and South. He went on to reprise the role in two sequels which aired in 1986 and 1994.

In 1992, he was chosen to play Frank Sinatra in the television miniseries Sinatra. Casnoff met Sinatra during shooting and went on to receive a Golden Globe nomination for his performance.

Casnoff portrayed Russian criminal Nikolai Stanislofsky on HBO's acclaimed TV series Oz from 1999 to 2000.

In 2000, he joined the cast of Lifetime Television's Strong Medicine. As Chief of Staff Dr. Robert Jackson, Casnoff stayed with the show for five seasons, until 2005. He also directed an episode and went on direct an episode of Monk.

His other screen credits also include Numb3rs, Without a Trace, Material Girls, Law & Order, Frasier, For All Time, Kiss Tomorrow Goodbye, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Diagnosis Murder, ER, How Stella Got Her Groove Back.

Casnoff's first leading role in a feature film was in a movie Sight Unseen that is still in a post-production with release date still TBA.

Personal life

Casnoff graduated from Central High Schoolmarker in June 1967. He has been married to actress Roxanne Hart since 1984. They have two sons, Alexander and Macklin.

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