As we get ready for the world premiere of ROBERT at the 2018 Toronto Fringe Festival, we're introducing the talented individuals of our creative team.
We're thrilled to introduce you to Briana Brown, playwright and co-director of Robert. Briana's previous work with Lark & Whimsy includes directing last year's Bad Baby Presents: Rules Control the Fun by Janelle Hanna, and Salt by Erin Vandenberg in 2016.
Name: Briana Brown
What are you doing on Robert? Playwright/Co-Director
Astrological Sign: Leo
Do you have any siblings, if so how many? I’m a proud only child.
Something you and your parents have in common? I think they really imbued me with their ‘life is short, make yourself happy now’ approach to life, their appreciation of the little things. We also all have our funeral songs picked out.
How many Roberts do you know? Oh man, a lot! My grandpa was a Robert (who went by Bob), obviously my dear friend and co-director Rob Kempson, my old landlord… And, for the record, this play is based on none of those people.
How do you feel about bagpipes? I love them. You can feel the sound of them in your gut.
What kind of grand gesture would you want someone to do at your funeral? I’d like all the people I love to come together on a full moon to dump my ashes in Lake Huron and go skinny dipping with me. I hope it’s a night filled with laughter above all.
What’s the best thing about working on Robert? For me, it’s this team of talented, hilarious, and generous people. A lot of us have worked together before and have solid working relationships, so there was an implicit trust on the first day of rehearsal, which is amazing. I love being able to just dig in and do the work. Also, everyone is hi-larious.
What’s your biggest challenge working on Robert? Because I was out of commission due to health reasons for most of May, I have more of a playwright hat on in rehearsal than I was intending, and that’s a tough thing to juggle while also directing. Also due to said health reasons, I’m directing from a mostly horizontal position, which feels ridiculous but the actors still seem to respect me.
Why should people come see Robert at the Toronto Fringe? It’s the kind of show I’m always drawn to at the fringe – it’s predominantly funny, but there’s also some meat to it, a possibility of seeing something about you or your relationships reflected back at you. And St. George the Martyr is a beautiful space fringe audiences may not have visited before.