Brett Ryback

Brett Ryback

Adjunct Lecturer


Brett Ryback is faculty member at the USC School of Dramatic Arts. He is an actor, composer/lyricist, and playwright based in L.A. He is the recipient of the ASCAP Foundation’s Cole Porter Award. As an actor, he originated the role of Marcus off-Broadway in Murder for Two at Second Stage and New World Stages, and reprised the role at the Geffen Playhouse.

Recent TV/Film appearances include Mom, Modern Family, How I Met Your Mother, House, Hail, Caesar!, and the Lifetime movie The Assistant. Regional theatre credits include The History Boys (Ahmanson); The Lieutenant of Inishmore (Mark Taper Forum); and the world premieres of The Prince of Atlantis, Dr. Cerberus (South Coast Rep), and Upright Grand (Theatreworks, Palo Alto).

His plays and musicals include Liberty Inn: The Musical (Ovation nominations Best Book, Best Music/Lyrics); Darling (Weston Playhouse New Musical Award, Featured on NBC’s The Apprentice); The Tavern Keeper’s Daughter (Best Musical, Pasadena Weekly) and Just A Little Critter Musical (Commission and Premiere by Milwaukee’s First Stage children’s theatre). His plays Weïrd (Winner, Tennessee Williams One-Act Competition) and A Roz by Any Other Name are both published in The Best American Short Plays 2007-2008.7” His musical Quit India was a finalist for the Richard Rodgers award, and his songs have been featured at Barrington Stages in William Finn’s “Ridiculously Talented…” concert series. He wrote, directed, and scored the parody trailer of Argo! The Musical, which reached over 3,000 hits in two days and was featured on the coveted homepage of FunnyorDie. His musical Joe Schmoe Saves the World was selected for the ASCAP/Dreamworks Musical Theatre Workshop lead by Stephen Schwartz, the 2016 NAMT Festival of New Musicals, IU Summer Theatre’s Premiere Musicals, and was developed at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. His musical Passing Through was developed at the Johnny Mercer Writers Colony at Goodspeed and the Rhinebeck Writer’s Retreat, and will be featured at Goodspeed’s New Works Festival in January 2018.

Ryback is currently commissioned by First Stage Milwaukee and South Coast Rep to compose a musical adaptation of Nate the Great. He created the online accompanist website, and he teaches musical theatre at USC.