Cast & Crew

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Darryl! Moch - dIRECTOR/iSAAC mEYERS

Darryl!, lives in Washington, DC and hails from Los Angeles.   He graduated in the premier class of the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts.   He earned a BA in performing arts (theater and dance) and bbbbbbbpsychology and an MFA in Theatre:Directing.  He also has a Masters in Counseling. 

Darryl!, is excited to join this cast, after a hiatus from the stage, and is grateful to Jason for the opportunity to appear in a cameo role in this amazing story and production and to assist him as AD.  He has performed, directed, written, and choreographed productions in a variety of places throughout the country.  

Darryl!, also directs the Charm City Labor Chorus and is a Transformational Leadership Social Entrepreneur and serves as a consultant and trainer for nonprofits,  mental health, and faith based organizations.


bbGlenn PEarson - mUSIC dIRECTOR

Glenn Pearson, Pianist, Organist, Music Director & Bandleader, leads Washington’s acclaimed dance orchestra Floating Opera and the Glenn Pearson Swing Band, and is the Pianist for the Cameron Strings Chamber Orchestra. Equally comfortable in classical jazz, pop, rock, and rhythm and blues, he has performed at the White House, Kennedy Center, WarnerTheater, Library of Congress, and dozens of other public venues and private homes in the United States and abroad. Glenn is also Pianist & Music Director for the annual Helen Hayes Awards Show.

His company, Glenn Pearson Productions, is a music and entertainment contracting business involving more than 200 musicians and other entertainers. In addition to donating his time and talent to music and entertainment productions, he gives the same to a wide array of charitable and civic groups, including Martha’s Table, Children’s Hospital, National Kidney Foundation, National Parkinson’s Foundation, and more. Glenn studied piano in the undergraduate and graduate devisions of Peabody Conservatory of Music in Baltimore, MD.

Glenn is currently Principal Organist at North Chevy Chase Christian Church in Chevy Chase, MD.


Gene Bruskin - pLAYWRIGHT

Gene Bruskin was born to a Jewish working class family in South Philadelphia and has been a life-long social justice activist, union organizer, poet, and playwright. Since retiring from organizing, Gene wrote his first play in 2016, a musical comedy for and about work and workers called Pray For the Dead-A Musical Tale of Morgues, Moguls and Mutiny. “Pray” also played as a radio drama on more than 30 public radio stations. More details about “Pray” can be found here.

The Moment Was Now is his second post-retirement musical.

Gene wrote his first musical, with Ira Wood in Boston 1975, “The Stolen Bicycle Blues” which was also featured as a radio drama on WBAI (Boston) and elsewhere.

In 1976 Gene and Ira Wood wrote It’s Not the Bus, a story about racism in Boston during the historic busing for desegregation period. The play was produced collaboratively with a larger collective and was later adopted and published as The Last White Class by Marge Pearcy and Ira Wood. During this period Bruskin interned with the San Francisco Mime Troupe and appeared briefly in the Troupe’s production of “Hotel Universe” about the 1977 historic struggle of Filipinos in the International Hotel.

Gene’s 40 year career in the labor movement began in 1978 as a school bus driver and union leader  with the Steelworkers Union (USWA). During this period his play writing went on a long hiatus.

He went on to work for a wide range of unions as an organizer and strategist.  

In the 1990s Gene served for two years as the labor director for the Reverend Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow Coalition.  He then served as Secretary Treasurer for the Food and Allied Service Trades Department of the AFL-CIO from 1994-2006. 

From 2006-2008 he directed the the Justice@Smithfield Campaign for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union that successfully unionized 5,000 slaughterhouse workers in Tar Heel, North Carolina, one of the largest labor victories in the 21st century.  He retired in September 2012 as the Director of Strategic Campaigns from the American Federation of Teachers. 

Gene was also a founder of US Labor Against the War and has done extensive international labor solidarity work.

Throughout his 40 year labor career Gene created an ongoing body of songs and poems.

Gene lives in Silver Spring Maryland with his wife Evie and his daughter Nadja.


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Julia Nixon - Frances Harper

If you love the nostalgic, powerful vocalist of days gone by, “The Diva” Julia Nixon is someone you’ll want to hear! Her voice and music embodies this!

Julia is a Washington DC treasure best known for replacing Jennifer Holiday in the original Broadway production of “Dream Girls”. She was discovered by Michael Bennett at Mr. Henry’s Adam’s Morgan in Washington DC.

Julia’s 4 octave range and vocal versatility allows her to sing many genres of music. This is how she got signed to Polygram London Records as a dance recording artist. They put out several releases including “Breakin’ Down” her break out worldwide dance hit. “Breakin’ Down” and her DC fame caught the attention of the late great Richard Pryor, who invited Julia to tour with him on what would become his last American tour.

This multi-talented lady is a songwriter (Julia co-wrote “Breakin’ Down” ),poet, playwright and actress and she was awarded a Helen Hayes Award for her efforts! Julia’s brilliant performance of Caroline in “Caroline or Change” at Studio Theatre won her, The Best Lead Actress in a Musical!

“Julia has a sound that transcends time” presently she has released 2 singles,
one “Survive” a modern, Urban funk, dance hit moving across America and into the UK gaining popularity and high praise from critics and DJ’s alike and the other single “He’s Not You” a powerful ballad that’s got Julia squalling up a vocal storm, perfectly matched for her voice, this song will make it’s debut on WPFW in the very near future be on the look out. “Survive” is available on CD Baby. “He’s Not You” is available on ITunes.

Julia can be seen and heard these days at Mr Henry’s 6th and Pennsylvania Ave on Capitol Hill. ( 202-546-8412 ) or MrHenrys.com. You may also see her in a very spirited, elegant tribute to Burt Bacharach/ Hal David. This show has been well received all over the DMV area


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LeCount R. Holmes Jr. - Frederick Douglass

has played many roles over the past years, but is best known for his one man show, the reenactment of “The Life of Frederick Douglass” (written, produced and performed).  LeCount has performed as Frederick Douglas in London England, the Historic Lincoln Theater in Washington DC, on Capitol Hill and for many colleges throughout the country.  US Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee presented him with a proclamation from the House of Representatives in Houston Texas.  He has performed in various plays such as Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf, Hurt so Bad, recently Laughing in Inspite of, voice overs talent, modeling, professional whistler, baritone Jazz vocalist, performed in musicals, and worked as a radio personality in Atlanta, GA and recently was featured in a National TV commercial a healthy lifestyle for baby boomers. 

LeCount created and successfully launched a singing telegram business where he delivered Singing Grams to such notables as Oprah Winfrey, Andrew Young, Robert Townsend, the late Mayor Harold Washington, the late Noble prize winner, Leon M. Lederman and many others. 

Having lived and traveled in other states, this native son of Washington D.C. lives by his motto for life, “The name of Life’s Game is Don’t Give Up.” 


Ariel Jacobson - William Sylvis

Actor/Musician Ari Jacobson’s DC credits include The Kennedy Center’s Shear Madness (Mikey Thomas), Kafka’s The Metamorphosis (Gregor Samsa; Woolly Mammoth, Capital Fringe Theatre, Prague Fringe Festival), and R.U.R. (Radius; Kennedy Center Page 2 Stage Festival) with Alliance for New Music Theatre, Swing Time (Vance/Sylvie; Mike Thornton Productions), and Love Songs from the Liberation Wars (Slim; Labor Heritage Foundation).

 Other credits include Hershele Ostropolyer (National Yiddish Theatre, NYC), South Pacific (Reagle Music Theatre, MA), a year-long tour of Hamlet/R&G are Dead/Comedy of Errors with the VA-based American Shakespeare Center, and several years as a solo guitarist on Carnival/P&O Cruiselines.

Also a singer/songwriter, you can hear Ari’s original work at www.arijacobson.com

 
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Jenna Rose Stein - Susan b. Anthony

Jenna Rose Stein is a resident of Ashburn Virginia where she teaches Music Together and raises her two daughters.  She studied Theatre, Music, and Dance at Sarah Lawrence college.

and She has performed with Adventure Theatre as the Lion in Dorothy Meets Alice, and multiple roles in Teradiddle Tales, with The American Center for Puccini Studies as Maguelonne in Cendrillon, Eloise in Vignettes of Passion, and Zia in Madama Butterfly, and with Stagecoach Theatre Company as Jenna in The Drunken Showtunes Cabaret and Ellie in Exit Stage Death.  She is very excited to be a part of this new production.

 

Chester Burke - Assistant Musical Director

Chester Lee Burke, Jr. is a gifted, classically trained pianist.  Playing since the age of 4, he commands all genres, as well as sings and directs.  Mr. Burke attended Morgan State University under a full scholarship, and graduated magna cum laude from Morgan with a Bachelor of Arts in Music.  At Morgan, he studied piano with Dr. Stephanie Bruning, and accompanied the world-renown Morgan State University Choir, under the direction of Dr. Eric Conway.  He has accompanied the choir in the Virgin Islands, Colombia, South Africa, China, Russia, Italy, Brazil, Jamaica, Australia, the Middle East, and throughout the United States in halls including the John F Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Strathmore Music Center, and Carnegie Hall.  After Morgan, Mr. Burke attended The Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, and studied with acclaimed pianist, Brian Ganz.  He graduated from Peabody with his Master of Music in Piano Performance.

Mr. Burke has worked with noted artists such as Dionne Warwick, Denyce Graves, Earnest Pugh, Maurette Brown-Clark, Anita Wilson, Patrick Lundy, and Nolan Williams.  He currently serves on the Worship and Music Staff at Shiloh Baptist Church in Washington, DC as the Church Pianist and Gospel Choir Director.  He also serves on the Music Faculty at Duke Ellington School of the Arts in Washington, DC as a Piano and Music Theory Instructor, and Vocal Accompanist. 

Alfredo Mujica - Percussion  

Alfredo Mojica was born in El Salvador, Central America, with music being a major part of his life. Alfredo started playing percussion at the early age of ten. In 1972 Alfredo moved to Washington D.C., and since then, he has performed with many talented musicians as; Jimmy Summers, The Grainger Brothers, Lonnie Liston Smith, Santana, Maysa, George Duke, Bobby Coldwell, Patti Austin, Peabo Bryson, Norman Brown, Nathan East, Richard Elliott, Kirk Whalum, Euge Grove, Jessie J., Earl Klugh, John Chuck Lobe, Lalah Hathaway, Bobby Lyle, Paul Taylor and Meshell Ndegeocello. Alfredo was also nominated and awarded, as a percussionist and vocalist for the “Whammies Awards,” since 1999 up until this date.                                         

John Nazdin - Bass 

Jon Nazdin is a native of Washington D.C. A graduate of The Berklee College of Music, he plays all genres of music on double bass and electric bass. Noteworthy highlights include working with Barbra Streisand, The Three Tenors, George Benson, Doc Severinson, Yoyo Ma and his Silk Road project, Denyce Graves, and Branford Marsalis. Mr. Nazdin has appeared on numerous “indie” recording projects. Jon is a long time member of the American Federation of Musicians.                            



Faruq Bey - Assistant to the Director                

Faruq Bey is returning back to his roots with this production of The Moment Was Now. He began his love for performance in live theatre and loves being able to assist with bringing this show to life. Faruq spends most of his time now writing and trying to produce feature screenplays, television pilots, and directing short films.