Regent University seeks to serve as a creative and spiritually uplifting place where people connect with others who are working in media and the performing arts in a learning environment. On the pages below, you will discover a few of the many artists and professionals who have shared their lives and experiences with us. In 1744, Italian philosopher and historian, Giambattista Vico, offered an apt account of the mission of a story-teller: “Now this is the three-fold labor of poetry (story-telling): (1.) To invent sublime fables suited to the popular understanding; (2.) to perturb to excess (entertain) with a view to the end proposed; (3.) and to teach the vulgar to act virtuously.” As Christians, we join with others to develop our gifts, our talents and our lives in ways that will help make a redemptive difference in the lives of others through the creative and prophetic power of story.
Industry Speakers & Guests
SAFD Fight Master, Fight Director
Michael Chin is the Society of American Fight Directors (SAFD) fight master and coordinator for the SAFD's National Stage Combat Workshop. Chin is recognized as a fight master, fight director and certified teacher with SAFD. He served as fight coordinator on Broadway for the internationally acclaimed hit show Festen. Chin is a student of Northern Style Shaolin Long Fist Kung Fu and currently is on adjunct faculty at American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in New York City. In 2005 he won the Outstanding Fight Direction Award from the New York Theatre Fringe Festival for his work on The Lizards.
Music Producer, Film and Music Video Director, and Composer
Per Holmes was originally a music producer in the '90s and has received a host of awards including Danish Grammys and even a World Music Award. He directed high-budget music videos utilizing large amounts of visual effects, motion-control, CGI etc. In the late '90s, he decided to quit his music career and devote himself fully to narrative directing. It was at this point he felt the need for a complete language of camera work, and not finding one anywhere, he set out to create one called Hollywood Camera Work. He also still occasionally produces music and, most recently, composed the orchestral theme score for a series called WorldWatch, hosted by Leonard Nimoy of Star Trek.
JEFF A.R. JONES
SAFD Fight Director
Jeff Jones has staged fights for theatre, opera and ballet companies including Asolo Conservatory Theatre, Playhouse on the Square, Virginia Shakespeare Festival, Florida State University, Duke University Burning Coal Theatre Company, Virginia Opera, Opera Illinois, Sarasota Opera and Carolina Ballet. As a teacher, he has worked at the Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training, Florida State University, Virginia Governor's School of the Arts and Springer Theatre Academy in addition to his private classes. He has taught at regional workshops including the Fight Director's Conference, Advanced Actor/Combatant Workshop, Paddy Crean International Workshop, Virginia Tea Party, Philadelphia Cheesesteak Workshop, Southeast Theatre Conference and North Carolina Theatre Conference with many speciality classes including Costumes & Combat, Ballet Fights, Found Weapons, Contemporary Violence, and Injuries, Wounds & Kills. He is the art director for The Fight Master. His fights have received rave reviews in both The Washington Post and The New York Times.
SAFD Fight Director
Scot Mann has choreographed, performed and instructed stage combat across the globe and his credits include the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, The Alliance Theatre Company and The Atlanta Opera.
Television Host, Author and Social Commentator
Bill O'Reilly is an American television/radio host, author, syndicated columnist and political commentator. He is the host of the cable news program The O'Reilly Factor. He is probably the most controversial, most frequently discussed TV analyst today. Prior to hosting The O'Reilly Factor, he served as anchor of the entertainment program, Inside Edition. O'Reilly also hosts The Radio Factor, a talk radio program syndicated by Westwood One and is the author of seven books, four of which were vaulted to No. 1 on the New York Times list of best sellers. O'Reilly also won three Emmys, the latest being the special 2008 Governor's Award.
Actress, Playwright and SAFD Fight Director
Rikki Ravitts has fought, taught and/or performed in New York City, London, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Las Vegas and Washington, D.C. Recent fight direction includes The Lucky Chance, Femme Fatale, Woyzeck, Romeo and Juliet, The Garden of Torment, Macbeth, Shake Battle and Roll, Hamlet, and Duellists: The Forgotten Champions.
Film Producer, Director and Writer
Ralph Singleton is an Emmy Award-winning producer. He won the award of Outstanding Drama Series in 1986 for Cagney and Lacey. He has acted as executive producer, associate producer, unit production manager, director and other positions in the production of numerous movies such as Clear and Present Danger, Last Man Standing, Another 48 Hrs., Leap of Faith & Supernova, Pet Sematary I & II, and The Mill, to name a few. Singleton's most recent movie, Saving Grace B. Jones, which he produced, is currently in post-production.
Writer, Actor, Producer and Director
Randall Wallace is an American screenwriter, producer and director who wrote the screenplay for the Mel Gibson film, Braveheart, for which he received an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay and a Writers Guild of America Award for Best Screenplay Adapted Directly for the Screen. Wallace wrote and directed the 2002 film, We Were Soldiers, also starring Gibson, and he also wrote the screenplay for the motion picture Pearl Harbor.
Clifford Christians is the current director of the Institute of Communications Research and chair of the doctoral program in communications, a position he also held from 1987 to 2001. He has been a visiting scholar in philosophical ethics at Princeton University and in social ethics at the University of Chicago and a PEW fellow in ethics at Oxford University. On the faculty at Illinois since 1974, Christians has won five teaching awards. His teaching interests are in the philosophy of technology, dialogic communication theory and media ethics.
Comic Actress and Impressionist
Louise DuArt, often called the world's greatest impressionist, continues to astound critics and celebrities alike with her dead-on impressions of America's most famous people. Her more than100 marquee characters range from Barbara Walters to Judge Judy, Joan Rivers to Jane Fonda and Barbra Streisand to George Burns. She was a part of the live road show, Together Again with Tim Conway and Harvey Korman. They crossed the country reviving sketches performed on The Carol Burnett Show and played to packed audiences for a number of years. She also hosted the popular talk show, Living The Life, on the ABC Family Channel, while her other series, Café DuArt, has been hailed as one of cable television's most innovative comedy-variety programs. Previously, she hosted a game show strip for Lifetime Television, and her Showtime Comedy Specials were Emmy-nominated.
Fight Director and Actor
Michael Johnson has been a fight director for such companies as The Shakespeare Theatre, Arena Stage, The Lady Cavaliers, Double Helix Theatre, NAATCO/ Fluid Motion, Round House Theatre, Folger Shakespeare Theatre, The Shakespeare Project, Theatre at Lime Kiln, Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company, Ford's Theatre, Delaware Theatre Company and The Kennedy Center. A professional actor as well, Johnson has performed at various regional theatres, on tour, on television and in feature films. He was also a stunt double for A Man Called Hawk.
Writer and Producer
Colman Luck is a writer, producer and creator of numerous television shows. One of the shows he created, Gabriel's Fire (1990), was nominated for the Edgar Allan Poe Award in 1991 for Best Television Episode. He was responsible for writing and executive producing television series in the '80s and '90s such as The Burning Zone (1996), Gabriel's Fire (1990), The Equilizer (1985) and Otherworld (1985). His most recent production, Webs, was released in 2003.
Fight Director, Teacher and Actor
John McFarland has been a fight director, teacher or actor in cities such as Boston, New York, London, Las Vegas, Chicago and Detroit. He's taught as a guest artist at University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, British Academy of Stage and Screen Combat's National Workshop, London, Columbia College, Chicago, Impulse Studio Theatre, Chicago, and New American Theatre, Rockford, Ill. McFarland is a co-founder of The Winter Wonderland Workshop, a stage combat workshop held every January in Chicago. He has taught stage combat at Columbia College since fall 2000.
Nic McLean, director whose credits include Noah's Arc and Walking on Water. Born in 1975 in Frederick, Md., McLean began making skateboarding videos at age 11. He soon earned the nickname "The Recorder" for constantly traveling with a camera and eventually earned a degree in film from the University of Maryland in 1996. Upon graduating, McLean moved to the Outer Banks of North Carolina—where he first learned to surf at the age of 12—documenting the barrier island's growing group of Christian surfers.
CBN Middle East Bureau Chief
Chris Mitchell's reporting has been distinguished by award-winning coverage of revival movements and other spiritual issues. His report on the "holy laughter" revivals in Toronto and London was named CBN's Focus Story of the Year in 1994. That same year, Mitchell also earned a Short Story of the Year award for his examination of religious coverage in network news. Mitchell first began reporting on the Middle East in the mid-1990s. Prior to joining CBN News in 1992, Mitchell worked for three years as a researcher, producer and reporter for the features/testimonies department of The 700 Club. In addition to his reports for The 700 Club, Mitchell is also a regular contributor to the CBN/Regent University program Christian World News.
Former ABC Television Executive, Motivational Speaker and Author
SQuire Rushnell has a four-decade career in television and radio. SQuire has appeared on Good Morning America, Fox News Channel, Nightline, NBC Nightly News and CBS Early Morning. He has also been seen nationally on The 700 Club, The Crystal Cathedral's Hour Of Power and Life Today with James Robison. As a veteran ABC Network Television executive, Rushnell led Good Morning America to number one, increasing ratings by 140 percent and growing annual profits to $40 million. While ABC's vice president for family programs he fathered the acclaimed Schoolhouse Rock series and ABC after-school specials capturing 75 Emmy Awards. He is the best-selling author of When God Winks: How The Power of Coincidence Guides Your Life, When God Winks On Love and When GOD Winks AT You. Rushnell's newest book is Couples Who Pray, The Most Intimate Act Between a Man and a Woman.
Co-founder of Invisible Children and Filmmaker
Jason “Radical” Russell is a co-founder of Invisible Children (IC), one of the original crazy guys who hopped on a plane to Africa and came back the bearer of a life-changing story. A filmmaker by trade, Russell graduated from the University of Southern California's film school with a degree in cinema production. His role around the office is continually evolving, but he will forever be employed as IC's grand storyteller and dreamer. It's his sparks of creative intelligence and insanity that have helped IC redefine the concept of humanitarian work, offering new life to old hope.
Sword Master and Fight Director
Richard Ryan has been sword master and fight director for films such as The Dark Knight (Batman), Troy, Stardust, The Last Legion, The Golden Compass and the upcoming, Solomon Kane. Ryan has extensive experience providing fight training for actors to perform fights with a multiplicity of weapons and serves as Master-at-Arms to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA).
Stephen Walker (former Regent student) is an independent filmmaker whose credits include Judges. While a student, Walker directed several short films, but as he graduated he began work on his first full-length feature. Judges is now available on DVD and is being released by Anthem Pictures.
Teacher and Actor
Terry Weber teaches a variety of performance related courses at both the graduate and undergraduate levels at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, where he has taught since 1989. His professional acting career has taken him to theatres in New York, Toronto, Avignon (France), Louisville, Chicago, Milwaukee, Kansas City, Montgomery and Knoxville. Major Shakespearean roles include Proteus, Iago, Benedick, Malvolio, Autolycus and Oberon. Weber is a company member of the Clarence Brown Theatre Company, the professional LORT theatre company in residence at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.
John Wynne has more than 25 years of experience in the entertainment industry to include both military and commercial training and experience in the handling and use of high and low explosives, weapons safety and handling, and special effects. Wynne has been licensed for explosives work in the state of California and is currently federally licensed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and Explosives (BATF Class 33 Permit). His recent credits include six months work in set construction and scenic painting on the feature film, The New World, starring Christopher Plummer, Colin Ferrell and Wes Studi, and work as a props maker on the set of the feature film, Cold Mountain, on location in Richmond and Williamsburg, Va. Wynne holds an MFA Degree in Scenic Design and Technical Production from The California Institute of The Arts and a BFA in Theatre and Speech Communications from Virginia Commonwealths University.