Daniel Quinn - Biography

Daniel Quinn is from Milwaukee, where his father Roger worked for Pabst Brewing Company as a sales manager and his mother Rosemary owned and operated an employment agency. He was raised in Wisconsin with his two older sisters, Kathleen and Colleen. He began performing at the age of eight, appearing as Kurt in The Sound of Music. That same year he formed his first garage band, on drums. At the age of 10 he appeared as Winthrop in The Music Man and started marching in a drum and bugle corps, eventually joining the Blue Stars Drum and Bugle Corps from La Crosse, Wisconsin. He also appeared in commercials, starring as the "Big Boy" for the hamburger chain's local franchise, Marc's Big Boy. The stage was set.

Part of the Quinn family owned dairy farms outside of Green Bay, Wisconsin, where Daniel spent many days as a child. He began riding horses at the age of 6, sparking his lifelong passion for horses - Daniel would make good use of his equestrian skills later in his acting career, as he has starred in four western film productions.

At 17, he became a member of the International Thespian Society and traveled to London to study at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art. While in Europe, he also studied at the Royal Shakespeare Company school at Stratford-upon-Avon.

Returning from London, Daniel appeared in several regional productions, including The King and I, Carousel, and a local production of West Side Story. During that production he met and fell in love with a ballet dancer in the Milwaukee Ballet. Daniel began to dance classically. With his musical background and his passion for dance as a firm foundation, he soon joined the Milwaukee Ballet Company, performing a season of The Nutcracker.

At the age of 19, he became deeply immersed in the strict discipline of classical dance. Daniel then moved to New York City to pursue his artistic dreams, making a brief stop on scholarship with the Harkness School of Ballet where he was mentored by ballet master David Howard. He was then accepted on scholarship into the New York City Ballet's School of American Ballet at Juilliard and while in the school, was honored to have George Balanchine and Jerome Robbins choreograph original pieces on him. As an apprentice, for two years he danced selected pieces with the New York City Ballet Company. During that time, Daniel was seen by Robert Joffrey and Gerald Arpino, and asked to dance as a soloist for one season in the Joffrey ll Ballet Company. The main Joffrey Ballet Company was disbanded during that time.

In 1980, Jerome Robbins revived the Broadway production of West Side Story. Daniel returned to his roots in musical theater, making his Broadway debut at the Minskoff Theatre. Daniel starred in the role of Gee-tar, with the Big Deal understudy. Quickly, Daniel moved into the role of Big Deal with the Riff understudy, and then go on as Riff. Two weeks after West Side Story closed, Daniel booked Robert Moore's Broadway production of Woman of the Year with Lauren Bacall and Harry Guardino at the Palace Theatre, opening in the original cast ensemble. During the show's run, he was asked to perform the role of Riff in the European Broadway tour of West Side Story. He toured four months throughout Italy and Monte Carlo, ending up in Paris at the Théâtre du Châtelet for a sold out nine month run. He then returned to the U.S. and back into Woman of the Year, where he assumed the role of Alexi Petrokov. After Woman of the Year closed in 1984, Daniel began performing in several television commercials and music videos.

Daniel's friend and mentor, actor Paul Sorvino, guided him into studies with Sanford Meisner at the Neighborhood Playhouse and Wynn Handman at Carnegie Hall. In 1985, Sorvino cast and directed Daniel in the off Broadway revival of The Rainmaker, where he played the role of Jim Curry, opposite Gary Sandy.

In 1987 Daniel appeared in the original off-Broadway play Out in America, opposite Daryl Hannah. Also in 1987, he performed in The Adventures of William Tell and the television series Crossbow, shot in France.

In 1988, director John Frankenheimer brought Daniel to Los Angeles for his first major feature film, Dead Bang. Within months, Daniel had landed guest starring roles in several episodics and movies, including a three-part Hunter with Fred Dryer, a two-part Matlock with Andy Griffith, China Beach, and several movies of the week. Daniel appeared in NBC's first season of Baywatch and was asked back for several episodes when the show went to USA cable network.

The first major film Daniel shot after arriving in LA was David Lynch's Wild at Heart. Lynch hand-picked him for the role of Tom Mix. He then shot Pierre David's Scanner Cop in 1993, in which he originated the starring role of the police scanner Samuel Staziak, a role which he reprised in Scanner Cop 2, also released as Scanners: The Showdown.

In 1992 Daniel was presented for an Emmy nomination for the role of Emilio in Jackie Collins' Lady Boss. Daniel continued to show his dramatic range in several television series including NYPD Blue, opposite Dennis Franz, ER opposite Julianna Margulies, Crossing Jordan, opposite Jill Hennessy, The X-Files, opposite David Duchovny, Without a Trace, opposite Anthony LaPaglia, and, more recently, in Criminal Minds, opposite Joe Mantegna. One of the highlights of Daniel's acting career was appearing in Diagnosis: Murder opposite one of his childhood idols, Dick Van Dyke.

In 2003 he landed contract roles on The Young and the Restless and Port Charles. He was again presented for an Emmy nomination for the role of Ralph Hunnicutt on The Young and the Restless.

Other film appearances include Louis L'Amour's Conagher, opposite Sam Elliott, The Last Outlaw, opposite Mickey Rourke, Miracle at Sage Creek, opposite David Carradine, Raising Flagg, opposite Alan Arkin, and The Avenging Angel, opposite James Coburn and Tom Berenger.

Daniel then filmed six episodes of the new television show twentysixmiles. The show shot on Catalina Island with Daniel as a series lead opposite John Schneider. The show is currently can be found on the website Hulu.com. His portrayal of the role of Dirk Stillwell allowed Daniel to return to his musical roots, not only acting in the production, but also playing drums and singing.

Daniel then completed the feature film Rubber" (2010 film), starring opposite Wings Hauser, for French director Quentin Dupieux. Rubber did well at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival, where it was acclaimed as a future sci-fi cult classic. Rubber was sold for international theatrical distribution.

Next, Karaoke Man, which was filmed in Los Angeles, where Daniel worked opposite Brian Dietzen and Bug Hall, and was directed by Mike Petty.

Daniel then starred in the political thriller, "Codex", directed by Norwegian film maker, Hawkon Gundersen. Daniel played opposite long time friend and colleague, Denice Duff. Daniel and Denice worked together in 2002 on The Young and the Restless as CBS contract performers, where they played husband and wife Ralph, and Amanda.

In the fall of 2012, Daniel appeared in the critically acclaimed Fox / Searchlight film The Sessions, with Oscar nominees John Hawkes and Bill Macy, and Oscar winner Helen Hunt. Written and directed by Ben Lewin. The film garnered Golden Globe, SAG, and Oscar nominations.

In 2012, Daniel was re-united with French director Quentin Dupieux in the comedy Wrong Cops, opposite Mark Burnham, Eric Judor, Steve Little, and Marilyn Manson. Wrong Cops first three chapters had its premier screening at the Sundance Film Festival 2013. Wrong Cops released theatrically in mid December 2013.

Daniel has filmed the suspense/thriller Independent feature film Story of Eva, in which he plays the role of psychologist Dr. Cornelius. The film was released in the January of 2015.

In 2014, Daniel completed two Blanc/Biehn Productions feature film Fetish Factory, playing fetish "Footman", a horror/comedy, and Psychophonia, playing Detective Alex Becker, in a psychological suspense thriller. Daniel is also set to star in two other Blanc/Biehn Productions feature films, Fembot, a SCI FI romantic comedy, and The Lincoln, an edgy road trip thriller.

Quinn has had roles that embrace the full diversity of the human condition, inspired by a wide-range of directors, teachers, artists and mentors.

Daniel was a leading force against the closure of the Motion Picture Home's Long Term Care Unit. Daniel served as an activist for the rights of Motion Picture and Television Industry elderly. As a leader in his advocacy for the Motion Picture and Television Fund's fabled Motion Picture Home's Long Term Care unit, Daniel was a critical element in organizing and speaking at several awareness events, fund raisers, and rallies. Daniel's vociferous and focused protection of his mother Rosemary's (and 137 other residents) status of care, led to the overturning of any attempt to close the 'nursing home' that has been home to aged members of the entertainment industry for over 90 years. Daniel worked closely with SAG Hollywood Board members to first gain the support of the Screen Actors Guild Union. Attending most of the 2009 and 2010 SAG Hollywood Board meetings, Daniel then spoke on the dais to the SAG National Board members, urging for their support to insure the future of the Long Term Care unit at the MPTF, his words were welcomed to a successful SAG National Board vote to stand by the historic mission in providing a safe haven for Industry members in need of long term care. Daniel then secured the support of the Teamsters Union, to build a powerful Industry pushback on the MPTF's plans to shutter the Long Term Care unit of the Home. Daniel was instrumental in returning the meaning of 'we take care of our own' to the Motion Picture and Television Fund.

Daniel resides in Los Angeles, where his story is ongoing.