CEO/Creative Director/Performing Artist Doctor Noize‘s name in the real world is Cory Cullinan. He grew up in Silicon Valley and had an idyllic childhood family life until a dramatic series of events inspired him to grow up quickly and apply unusual focus and purpose into his life at a young age — the subject of one of his two Keynote Addresses.
Cullinan graduated with Distinction and Honors in Music and Political Science from Stanford, where he focused on classical music history, electronic music and voice. Soon after, his art rock album My Oyster drew rave reviews for having the free spirit of an indie release but the production values of a major release — a blueprint he would follow upon becoming Doctor Noize. The live recording of his marriage proposal song to his wife, Something (For Janette), lead to placement of his songs in mainstream movies like Brad Pitt’s Spy Game and television shows from soap operas to prime time dramas. He also wrote film scores for projects as diverse as documentaries shown at the Sundance Film Festival and PBS to Air Force training sessions.
He then turned his energy to teaching high school music at Pinewood School, and made an immediate and lasting impact on his students. His popular classical music history course, Too Many Notes, was made a requirement for all freshmen; his music composition and production class released eight full length CD’s of original songs created in the recording studio he built for the school; he conducted his students in a fully staged production of Sondheim’s Into The Woods; and led his select choir to win the Best Overall Choir award at Disneyland’s huge Music In The Parks competition. The Pinewood Singers earned the only perfect score from the judges while competing against schools ten times Pinewood’s size. Cullinan was named the Arts, Communication & Technology Department Head after just a few years teaching.
It was also at Pinewood that Doctor Noize first combined three of his loves — kids, teaching and soccer — to become a soccer coach. A competitive soccer player in his youth, the Doc lead Pinewood’s high school boys’ soccer team — who hadn’t won a league game in seven years — to an inspired 8-4-2 record. The Doc’s coaching philosophy is the same as his music teaching philosophy: He demonstrates and entrusts his kids with a much more sophisticated style of play than most adults preach to kids, and the kids respond with the boundless enthusiasm that is inherent to them — growing in leaps and bounds. Moving on to coaching younger girls his daughters’ age, he lead his girls’ team to the championship of their age group’s top division for three consecutive seasons. Speaking of the girls…
After the birth of his two action/adventure superhero daughters, Cullinan’s passion became creating inspired music and multimedia learning for younger adventurers. He released The Ballad Of Phineas McBoof, his first recording under the guise of his alter ego, Doctor Noize. Within two months, it had spawned a national #1 hit song — Banana — on Sirius XM Kids Radio and scored awards ranging from a Parents Choice Award to being named one of Dr. Toy’s 100 Best Children’s Products. Then came the completion of Doctor Noize’s first book, The Ballad Of Phineas McBoof. Like the recording, the book tells the tale of the great monkey Phineas McBoof and his quest for the impossibly perfect song with his band, The International Band Of Misunderstood Geniuses.
His subsequent albums of innovative musical theater continue to challenge families — and the family media industry — to realize that kids are the most adventurous, creative, and brilliant audience in the world. The Return Of Phineas McBoof — one of the most sophisticated family albums ever recorded — completes the story arc of The Ballad Of Phineas and features a fully-orchestral version of Banana starring opera great Nathan Gunn. This lead to a commission by The McConnell Foundation to compose a 60-minute work for orchestra and voice about classical music, which premiered with CA’s North State Symphony under the baton of Maestro Kyle Pickett and will soon be made into an album. His third album, Grammaropolis, was also a commission, from the wonderful Grammaropolis brand. Featuring the Top 10 national hit Welcome To Grammaropolis, it teaches kids an in-depth knowledge of grammar through Doctor Noize’s trademark story/character based teaching techniques.
As a live performer, the Doc has inspired enthusiastic audiences across the country by engaging kids and adults alike with his totally innovative performance approach inspiring audiences to participate in the creative process. He performs multiple instruments onstage, and arranges and records songs live on the spot, inviting audience members to come onstage and contribute their own talents. All Doctor Noize live programs are administered to creative audiences with immeasurable doses of energy, goodwill and humor. The Doc performs everything from intimate acoustic shows to his groundbreaking performances with full symphony orchestras that inspire a love of classical music in kids.
Doctor Noize has combined his music and teaching backgrounds into his renowned Workshopz across the country. Whether he’s teaching kids about Pop Song Structure, Classical Sonata Form, music fundamentals, songwriting, or giving Keynote Addresses, the Doc is known as an inspiring teacher for kids and adults alike. Nowhere else will you find a man with the audacity to tour the country writing, recording, and publishing complete songs online with kids in 60-90 minute workshops.
The success of his music and his integrated story- and character-based approach to family media — developed during Doctor Noize’s years as a teacher — soon lead to other multimedia opportunities and ventures. Doctor Noize signed a multimedia partnership with Outblaze Ventures, the creators of the Hello Kitty 3D animated videos and games, online games for Ben 10 and Tom & Jerry, and the popular kids’ mobile apps by Dream Cortex. He became the CEO and Creative Director of Doctor Noize Inc., whose multimedia line now includes albums, books, mobile apps, online games, educational curriculums, videos, and more. Doctor Noize’s first app, Bananas! — based on his hit song — charted Top 25 in over 25 countries around the world and has been downloaded more than 300,000 times.
Despite a slightly larger operation, Doctor Noize remains fiercely true to his indie educator spirit, and continues to eschew the “simple comfort food” approach of much of the children’s media world in favor of more sophisticated fare that recognizes kids for the creative geniuses they are. Doctor Noize’s shows and productions are geared toward an inspired and motivated family audience, not a large and lazy one. He believes every kid is capable of great sophistication — even if our culture increasingly settles for less than that. The Doc is aided by an organic national network of Noizemakers who want to bring quality family experiences to their kids and communities.
To stay connected to fans wherever they are, Doctor Noize writes a quarterly Noizeletter that’s developed quite a fan base itself. Zooglobble writer and NPR family music commentator Stefan Shepherd called it the “Best Newsletter In Kids Music” by “the funniest guy in kids music, and that’s saying something.” The problem is, Dr. Noize is trying to be very serious, so Shepherd’s commentary was very hurtful. Or not.
So that’s that. Thanks for stopping by and reading this bio. We hope you thought it was even better than Tolstoy’s War & Peace, but a lot shorter. Well, a little shorter. See you at the shows.