Anthony W. Johnson
Anthony W. Johnson is the creator of Ballet Magique®, which is his Registered Trademark and Ballet Magique Entertainment, an entertainment company that fuses dance, magic, music, theatre into dynamic performances, and have received accolades from all over the globe. He is also the founder of Laughing Man on Fire Productions, where he creates and produces innovative, content for all genres. Johnson’s background in Dance, theatre, magic, music and wushu is extensive. That is because he has worked in most every field of dance and theatre. Given the great opportunity to perform for many years with the Lyric Opera of Chicago under the tutelage of his teacher and mentor Kenneth Von Heidecke, in Operas like “Aida” and “The Ghost of Versailles” where he flew 80 feet above the stage holding a Champaign bottle tumbling about. Other Ballet, Modern jazz companies he worked with, to name a few include The Los Angeles Opera Company, and Ballet Theatre of Chicago, Ballet Chicago, and Chicago Festival Ballet, International Ballet of Rotaru, Tampa, Colorado Ballet, Contemporary Ballet Theatre and the Moscow Ballet, Ballethnic, The Lula Washington Dance Theatre, Atlanta Ballet, Physical Rhythm Project, James Kelly Project, Second City Ballet, Media City ballet, “ Those funny Little People”, Colors Dance Theatre, and Demetrius Klein & Dancers to name a few.
Johnson has spent over a decade mesmerizing audiences throughout the country and abroad with his unique and pointed artistic interpretation of form fusion and movement. A brief collection of Johnson’s accomplishments and performances as both a dancer and/actor include; such as, “Marat/Sade”, a “Dreamgirls”, “Randy Newman’s Faust”, and in several productions at The Black Ensemble Theatre in Chicago where he was nominated Best Actor for his role as “Tommy Gomez in “Me and Ms. D” the story of Tommy Gomez and the legendary Katherine Dunham. Other lead roles in amazing work such as “A Streetcar named Desire” and “The Amen Corner”.
Anthony W. Johnson began writing songs and melodies via the insight of his late partner Gene Wooley, who was VP of Quality and Assurance for MCA Records—and worked as an engineer for Elton John, Pink Floyd, Tina Turner, and countless others. Later, Johnson met Composer Wes Hambright, who reached out to Johnson. Johnson convinced Wes to allow him to give him one of his melodies. By doing so, Johnson took the melody, expanded it, and wrote the lyrics as a tribute to Gene, his first song. Later, game composer Paul Romero reached out to Johnson to collaborate and work together. They begin writing the music for the "C" Diaries. It was a successful endeavor, but Johnson decided to rewrite it as his focus shifted to the life of Da Vinci, and he realized that he had developed Da Vinci Diaries, a new musical after completion. To not let the work Johnson did with Paul go mute, Johnson decided to keep two pieces that they worked on and added lyrics to complete them.
Johnson then teamed up with jazz pianist and songwriter Lorenzo Pryor and bought two of his tracks. During this time, he met music Producer Alex Elena. With Alex, Johnson rearranged them, updated the lyrics, and restructured them to reveal the essence and nature of what they foretold.
Inspired by a song he choreographed, Anthony decided to write a song with an homage to its stylistic approach. The song is now in the Film Alexis Colette. It did not stop there. Anthony wrote most of the pieces in Alexis Colette and produced them with Alex Elena and Sebastian Molina. He continues working with other up-and-coming artists. So, Johnson licensed two songs from his colleagues who felt the best way for people to hear their work was to have Johnson do his thing. According to music supervisor Budd Carr, Johnson's future is evident, especially in songwriting. For Johnson, he wants to innovate and invigorate the music experience and create great music. Furthermore, he wants to introduce this generation to the power of fusion.
Johnson toured with legendary Sir Paul McCartney’s “Drivin’ U.S.A.,” several Pacific Tours on Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, and a plethora of television and film appearances, including “Son of the Beach,” “Hoodlum,” “Skin Walker” “The World Magic Awards,” “Jackson’s: An American Dream,” “Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest” and “Black Limousine.”
In 2004, “Dance Spirit Magazine featured an article on Anthony W Johnson with an interview about Lyrical Dancers in Los Angeles as he was considered the best male Lyrical dancer in Los Angeles, CA.
As The Director of Ballet Magique, Johnson personally has received accolades from Master Magician Lance Burton, renowned illusion designer Jim Steinmeyer, The Orange County Chinese Association, the Beverly Hills Outlook, and most recently, The World Dance Awards.
Johnson also gained a Lester Horton Award nomination for “Outstanding Achievement in Choreography,” Costume and Lighting Design” for Ballet Magique’s “Ring of the Rose. That year, his student Nobutaka Mochimaru also received the prestigious Male Dancer of the Year award from The Beverly Hills Outlook for his performance with Ballet Magique, beating out Mikhail Baryshnikov and Carlos Acosta.
Mr. Johnson has taught dance throughout the United States and abroad. He spent several years on the dance faculty at IDA. Johnson taught for many years in Los Angeles at the renowned Millennium Dance Complex, the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, The Edge Performing Arts, the Westside School of Ballet, and the International Dance Academy in Hollywood, where he currently teaches.
Anthony has been a judge for several dance competitions, such as “The Showstoppers Dance competition and I Love Dance. Mr. Johnson continues to inspire and mentor students and professionals alike, most of whom have gone on to perform with the likes of Janet Jackson, Madonna, American Ballet Theatre, School of American Ballet, Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre, Alberta Ballet, Cirque Du Soleil, National Ballet of Canada, and the incomparable Béjart Ballet Lausanne; On Broadway in The Lion King, The Color Purple, Come Fly Away, and Mama Mia, in television and film, So you think you can Dance, Dancing with the Stars, Step 1, 2, & 3 as well countless schools and colleges such as School of American Ballet, The Boston Ballet School, The Rock School of Ballet, The Ailey School, Béjart Rudra, Boston Conservatory, and Juilliard to name a few.
Anthony began writing at the age of nine, and his poetry has been published in several anthologies. He has won several awards for poetry and is set to publish his book “C," a science fiction fantasy about angels, demons, the people who possess them, and the unseen links that will ultimately save the world from Mankind. Under Laughing Man on Fire, Anthony is proud to make his film debut with the dynamic story Alexis Colette, which is set to shoot in London in 2020. Anthony's story Vodun has been optioned by Samaco Films, although Emma Williams will write the script. Anthony will write the screenplay.
Anthony continues to teach master classes in Acting, Ballet, Contemporary, and Audition techniques.