Since partnering in 1999, Bryce and Musto have worked on Mitsubishi and DirecTV. Musto came to Deutsch/LA via engineering school at New York's Hofstra University, where he was planning to be an architect. "At the last minute I couldn't deal with another four years of school," he explains; that was when he began to take classes at the School of Visual Arts. After a stint in Deutsch's New York office, he transferred to Los Angeles. Bryce found his way to Deutsch after a period at a small L.A. shop called Fattal & Collins. Although, unlike his partner, he has no formal training in another field, he intimates that he has a backup plan in case his advertising career becomes a dismal failure. "If I wasn't doing this, I'd be a superhero. I don't have any superpowers, though, so it really wouldn't work out," he deadpans. Musto, willing to explore this idea, adds, "You're the superhero who gives advice. Like `We should save those people over there."'
Luckily for damsels in distress everywhere, it looks like advertising is going to be a success for the time being. Bryce and Musto express nothing but love and admiration for their current employers. "Let me just say that we think Donny Deutsch is a wonderful man. A handsome man," says Bryce before beginning his encomium in earnest. "Deutsch has been great because it's a great culture of people to work with, which makes our job very easy." Musto chimes in, "Nobody's a hide-their-paper creative. It's competitive because there's a lot of good people, but at the same time there's a real camaraderie."
Which is not to say that the two of them work together smoothly all the time. "There's got to be some tension," asserts Musto. To work out their problems, he says, "We clear the room and we wrestle."
The occasional headlocks and double Nelsons don't really get in the way of warm, intelligent work, as the agency brass has implicitly acknowledged: In December, Bryce and Musto were promoted to associate creative directors, and they now oversee the DirecTV account.