RIDING OUT THE STORM CREATIVE TEAM
BRUCE ALAN JOHNSON (Director) is an award-winning photographer and documentary filmmaker based in New York City. He received his BFA in film production from the University of Iowa. While studying there, his love of cinematography led to a love for photography and he now travels the world shooting landscapes, architecture, candids and portraits. Bruce’s photography has appeared around the world on the covers of and inside such publications as Incentive, Back Stage, The Daily Iowan, and Limin’ Times. Awards include the Grand Prize in the Daily Iowan’s annual photography contest and Lend a Lomo at NYC’s Center for Photography. Bruce edited and co-directed the award-winning documentary TRANSCENDING – THE WAT MISAKA STORY (winning the “Emerging Eye Directorial Discovery Award” from the Roving Eye Documentary Film Festival and the “Gold Kahuna Award” from the Honolulu International Film Festival) and directed the short film ALL AMERICAN EYES (“Audience Award” from the Waves International Film Festival). He first came to New York as an actor where he appeared on Broadway as "Joe Gillis" opposite Elaine Paige in SUNSET BLVD. and as "Fyedka" in the national tour of FIDDLER ON THE ROOF with Theodore Bikel. His new album, IF NOT NOW, an acoustic reimagining of songs through a rockabilly/bluegrass lens using band members from the Broadway and First National Touring Companies of COME FROM AWAY, is currently in the prerelease singles phase of being released before being completely available in 2024 on streaming media. For more information, please visit www.brucealanjohnson.com. Instagram: bjohnson_photos.
CHRISTINE TOY JOHNSON (Screenplay & Lyrics, Executive Producer) is a Tony honored, Obie, Rosetta LeNoire, JACL, and Asian American Arts Alliance award winning writer, actor, and advocate for inclusion. Her written work has been produced and/or developed by the Roundabout, Village Theatre, O’Neill Center, the Abingdon, Greater Boston Stage Company, Ars Nova, Barrow Group, Prospect Theatre, Weston Playhouse, Florida Studio Theatre, National Women’s Theatre Festival, and more, and is included in the Library of Congress’s Asian Pacific American Playwrights Collection. Published by NoPassport Press, Smith & Kraus, Rowman & Littlefield, Applause Books. Treasurer of the Dramatists Guild and host of the Guild’s podcast "Talkback" on Broadway Podcast Network. BMI, Writers Lab, Sarah Lawrence College alum, co-founder of AAPAC (Asian American Performers Action Coalition). As an actor, Christine has appeared extensively on Broadway, Off-Broadway, in regional theatres across the country and on television and film. Insta: @CToyJ Details: www.christinetoyjohnson.com
MICHAEL MOTT (Composer) is an internationally acclaimed musical theatre composer/ lyricist, pop songwriter and vocal producer with over 14 million streams to his name. He has been heralded one of Playbill's "contemporary composers you should know." His original musicals include In The Light, A Faustian Tale (book by Nathan Wright and Justin Silvestri), The Fairy's Tale (book by Gretchen Suárez-Peña), Mob Wife, A Mafia Comedy (book by Corey Skaggs) and the ten minute musical film, Riding Out The Storm (screenplay and lyrics by Christine Toy Johnson). He has written, produced and recorded three full length studio albums of his original theatre, pop and jazz material sung by some of the best vocalists from Broadway, television and film. His discography includes Where The Sky Ends, The Only One, Abandoned Heart, In The Light (Highlights from the World Premiere Studio Cast Recording) [which debuted at #8 on the Billboard charts], plus various dance remix EPs and singles. His full discography is available everywhere music is sold. Sheet music is available at MichaelMott.net.
MIMI BESSETTE (Beth) In addition to being a recording artist, Mimi Bessette is an established actress in American theater. Her credits include - Broadway/Off-Broadway: Bonnie & Clyde(Emma Parker), The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas(Dawn), Little Shop of Horrors(Audrey) and Smoke on the Mountain(Denise). First National Tours: Soul Doctor(Mother), Parade(Ensemble), Keep on the Sunny Side(Maybelle Carter), Big River(Ensemble) and The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas(Angel). She’s performed lead roles at almost all the major regional theaters across the U.S. in shows such as Into The Woods, Bright Star, The Irish and How They Got That Way, A Gentleman’s Guide To Love and Murder, Woody Sez, Duck Commander, Church Basement Ladies, Cowgirls, Always...Patsy Cline, Hank Williams: Lost Highway, The Buddy Holly Story, Blood Brothers, Nunsense, Pump Boys and Dinettes and Woody Guthrie’s American Song. Film/ TV: Annie(opposite Jamie Foxx) and Difficult People(opposite Andrea Martin). Mimi sang with Bruce Springsteen as part of a Woody Guthrie celebration with The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. She is featured on the cast albums: Bonnie & Clyde, Keep on the Sunny Side and Woody Guthrie’s American Song. Also featured on: From Broadway With Love, Bonnie and Clyde and a Whole Lotta Jazz and 'Til We Outnumber 'Em. Her album Lullabies of Broadway was nominated for Best Children’s Album(New York Music Awards) and received The Parent’s Choice Seal of Approval. Both this album and her recent release Lullabies of Broadway Act II were picked up by Van Dean of the Grammy Award winning Broadway Records. They are available at broadwayrecords.com, amazon.com, iTunes and barnesandnoble.com. For more information go to www.mimibessette.com.
DIANA HUEY (Jackie) is a Helen Hayes and Gregory Award Winning New York based actor best known for her portrayal of Kim in Miss Saigon (Signature Theatre) and Ariel in the first National Tour production of Disney’s The Little Mermaid, where she made international headlines for combatting racism over her casting as an Asian American actor. Diana continues to be a proud advocate for diversity and inclusion in the arts. As a theater actor, she has worked regionally across the country and has also been a part of numerous world and U.S. premiers including, Pasek and Paul’s James And The Giant Peach as the original Spider, Michael Arden’s production of Maybe Happy Ending as JiYeon and Anchuli Felicia King’s White Pearl as Built Suttikul. Her solo show, Find Your Light, has been performed at The Green Room 42, Ogunquit Playhouse and has been invited to be part of 54 Below’s lineup in New York City. On screen she has been featured in Pokémon, Yu-Gi-Oh, Netflix’s It’s Bruno, TNT’s Leverage and The Glee Project. She is a current member of Disney’s Disney Princess —The Concert, which has taken her to perform around the US and as far as Dubai for the Disney+ Launch in MENA. For more info, visit www.DianaHuey.com or @DianaHuey on social media.
MEL MAGHUYOP (Eddie) is honored to be able to participate back into the “biz” with this project of RIDING OUT THE STORM. He is currently working in the motorcycle industry for Ducati New York on the management team, but he was (and some say always will be) an actor. He left full time performing to take care of his ailing parents in 2017 and found the motorcycle industry. Little did he know that this new skill would be utilized in the future for performing once more. Performing professionally as an actor since 2001 he has been involved in over 40 productions worldwide. His highlights of his career include: REGIONALLY he has played The "King of Siam" in K&I for Algonquin, ZACH, Lyric OKC, Harbor Lights NYC and Walnut Street Theatre in Philadelphia. He has also played "The Engineer" in MISS SAIGON for Flat Rock Playhouse, La Mirada, Fulton and Walnut Street. In addition, has done 10 regional productions of MISS SAIGON in addition to 2 national tours playing all male roles at some point including Thuy and Engineer Understudy. OFF-BROADWAY: “Bill Sikes” in Oliver!, “Horiyoshi” in Tokio Confidential, “Ike Skidmore” in Oklahoma!, “Ferdinand Marcos” in Imelda: The Musical and “Kenshin” in Honor. Additionally, he has a Barrymore nomination for Outstanding Leading Actor in a musical for Walnut Street Theatre’s 2011 production of Miss Saigon where he played the Engineer and he won Best Leading Actor in a musical for Broadway World Austin in Zach Theatre’s 2014 production of The King and I playing the King of Siam. Thank you Christine, Bruce and Michael for bringing me back to blend my current and past worlds into this beautiful piece. He will always love performing and hopes to return full time again one day! Love to Bolt, Dad and Anne always. Thank you for taking me so far.
WADE MCCOLLUM (Bob) met Christine Toy Johnson while he was performing the one-person David Sedaris play The Santaland Diaries, though comfortable in Santaland Elf attire, Wade is probably best known for his Lortel Award Nominated Off-Broadway performance as Ernest Shackleton in Ernest Shackleton Loves Me for which Wade garnered the Elliot Norton Award for Best Actor. Ernest Shackelton Loves Me was filmed at the Tony Kiser Theatre in NYC and you can see Wade wearing that famous Antarctic explorer attire on BroadwayHD.com. Wade has appeared on Broadway in Wicked, First National Broadway Tours as Tick/Mitzi in Pricilla Queen of the Desert, and as Karpathy/Higgins in Lincoln Center Theatre’s My Fair Lady. In London’s West End Wade appeared in It Happened In Key West (World Premier). Other notable performances: Hedwig in Hedwig and the Angry Inch (Garland Award, Los Angeles Drama Critic’s Circle Award, Ovation Nom.) Batboy in Batboy the Musical (Drammy Award), Charlotte in I Am My Own Wife (Drammy Award), The Emcee in Cabaret (Dallas Fort Worth Critic’s Circle Award), Prior in Angels in America,
TV: The Knick, FBI: Most Wanted, Madame Secretary, Prodigal Son, Nightcap. In 2003, McCollum co-founded and was Artistic Director of Oregon’s Insight Out Theatre Collective, whose company focus was to create space for marginalized voices. As a composer and writer, McCollum’s work has been workshopped/produced nationwide on stages including Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The Alchemy L.A, 59e59th Street, Sonnet Repertory Theatre, and Classic Stage Company. McCollum co-wrote and directed his first feature-length feature film to premier this fall Secondary Dominance. McCollum is also a co-founder of the Cornell Tech-born neuroscience/music startup: Neural Positive. McCollum will graduate next year with his degree in Neuroscience from the University of Pennsylvania.
KIM SCHARNBERG (Orchestrations) Broadway: Jekyll & Hyde, Scarlet Pimpernel, Civil War, Little Women (Drama Desk Award nomination), Wonderland, Jekyll & Hyde revival. International: No Longer Human, Carmen, Rudolf, Monte Cristo, Phantom (Yeston/Kopit), Ragtime (MTI 9 - piece orchestration), Ragtime (symphonic concert version), Rocktopia & Wonderland (music supervisor) Film: A River Runs Through It, Quiz Show, Fly Away Home, The Net. Television: Dallas, Knot's Landing, Party of Five. Other: Handel's Messiah Rocks, Linda Eder, Boston Pops, Atlanta Symphony, Vienna Symphony. From Broadway with Love (Sandy Hook, Orlando, Parkland), Associate Artist at Ford's Theatre (Washington, DC), Composer/Arranger for the Pageant of the Masters (Laguna Beach, CA). Much more at www.KimScharnberg.com
JOSHUA ZECHER-ROSS (Music Supervisor) has worked on 100s of productions and performances in New York and around North America as a music supervisor and director, conductor, pianist, and arranger. Broadway: Be More Chill (conductor sub), Once Upon a One More Time (keyboard sub), Some Like it Hot (rehearsal pianist). Recently: The Marvelous Wonderettes (Alabama Shakespeare Festival), A Christmas Carol (Denver Center), The Louder We Get (Theatre Calgary). Other regional: Barrington Stage Company, Repertory Theatre of St. Louis, George Street Playhouse, Sharon Playhouse, and The Little Theatre on the Square (Sullivan, Illinois) where he also served as artistic director. Joshua is a composer of Rescue Rue, a musical for young audiences, which recently had an off-Broadway run, and is the music director and arranger for several shows currently in development. He is a co-producer and arranger of the world premiere recording of Michael Mott’s In the Light, and is an instructor and the head of music at the musical theatre program at the NY Film Academy. @joshuazr1311 www.JoshuaZR.com
Michael Croiter (Sound and Music Mixing Engineer) is the owner of Yellow Sound Lab, a music production company in New York City’s East Village. He’s the drummer/percussionist and music mixing engineer for Sesame Street (11 Emmy Awards). Other notable clients include: Submissions Only (producer, mixer, composer), PBS’s The New Electric Company (1 Emmy Award), Disney’s Johnny and The Sprites (1 Emmy Nomination), ABC’s One Life To Live (Emmy for Song Of The Year), Audible, AMC, HBO, MTV Movie Awards,NBC and Disney’s TV movie, The Descendants (drummer and music mixer). The record company, Yellow Sound Label, has produced solo albums for such artists as Chita Rivera, Alan Cumming, Jose Llana, Jessica Vosk, Telly Leung and cast recordings of Matilda (Grammy Nomination), Burt Bacharach and Steven Sater’s Some Lovers (Grammy Nomination), A Strange Loop (Grammy Nomination) Groundhog Day, Bandstand, Big Fish, First Date, The Visit, Murder Ballad, Heathers, The Lightning Thief and many more. As a musician, Michael serves as music director, drummer and guitarist for theater legend Chita Rivera on her international concert tours, PBS Great Performances broadcast and Carnegie Hall debut in 2016 . He was the drummer and co-arranger for Alan Cumming for his debut at Jazz at Lincoln center and subsequent international tours. He was the drummer for the Broadway revival of Sunset Boulevard starring Glenn Close. He was the drummer for the hit Broadway show Avenue Q for 6 years and did the broadway run and subsequent tour of Chita Rivera, The Dancer’s Life. In addition, he’s appeared in performance with such diverse artists/composers as Keith Lockhardt, Jerry Goldsmith, Audra McDonald, Don Rickles, Tommy Tune, Telly Leung, Caissie Levi, and Kristin Chenoweth. Michael is a member of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, and the American Federation of Musicians. He studied classical percussion at Syracuse University and jazz percussion at The University of Miami. www.yellowsoundlabel.com
CALEB GRISSETT (Assistant to the Director) has been working in theatre/tv/film for over 15 years wearing many different hats. Performance, design, production, and everything in between, his career has taken him all over North America and now back to his home in NYC. Currently taking on a new role as the Merchandise Manager for the hit Broadway musical Back to the Future and its full retail store at the Winter Garden Theatre. Caleb was thrilled to be a part of this short film and thanks Christine and Bruce for inviting him to be along for the process. Stay up to date with Caleb’s next adventures @calebgrissett. All my love to Cam and Weston.