18 Jul F30 Countdown – Brough Hansen
I know, there are only eighteen days until the festival begins! Since we have no time to lose, let’s get to know finalist Brough Hansen.
Brough Hansen (pronounced ‘Bruff’) is a New York based playwright, screenwriter and actor. His plays have been produced by Amios Theatre, Valhalla Productions, Writing is Live and the Something Marvelous Festival in Chicago. He was a finalist for City Theatre’s National Award for Short Playwriting and his full-length play, Buttonholes was a semi-finalist for the Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference. He was an Artist in Residence at the Hangar Theatre in Ithaca this spring and is currently developing a screenplay for a production company. He’s also been spotted acting in New York and regional theaters around the country. Brough is thrilled and honored to be a part of the Samuel French Off Off Broadway Short Play Festival! MFA – Brown/Trinity. BA – Dartmouth.
When did you start writing plays? If you had a moment where you realized you wanted to write, what was it?
I’ve always loved storytelling as a means of understanding and expressing experience. I think I wrote my first short story in second grade. It was about a murderous teddy bear made such by an ancient Egyptian curse, as is usually the case. My fiction never really improved until my junior year in college when I wrote a mediocre play and felt I was finally headed in the right direction.
How did you come to write your OOB play? Was there a particular inspiration behind its creation? How has it developed?
I originally wrote it for a short play festival and, not knowing what the story would be, decided to give myself the challenge of packing a large swath of time into the space of ten minutes. I was also approaching that threshold of adulthood and all its attendant feelings of ambivalence and regret, themes that then fell naturally onto the page.
What are 5 words that describe who you are as a playwright?
I aspire to be/create work that is: affirming, ferocious, taboo, dangerous, and that grapples with the idea of amor fati.
What/who are some of the major influences on your writing?
Colorado often finds its way into my writing even though I left it long ago and fancy myself to be a sophisticated, urban artist. There’s something about its vastness, its stillness, the complicated memories I left there… I’m a fairly dark guy, so I also like me a good Greek tragedy. A little Chekhov doesn’t hurt. I’m not religious, or even ‘spiritual,’ but I must confess that the Bible is without contest my favorite book.
What’s one fact someone would never guess about you?
I’m terrible at sports. I’m a big guy and when I was growing up that seemed to make people think I would be good at them. Boy were they wrong.
What are some of your favorite plays?
I wish I had a more interesting answer to this question: Hamlet, Seagull, Long Day’s Journey, Glass Menagerie,etc. We take so much of the canon for granted, but when you read those plays closely you come to realize how masterful they really are.
Any new projects you’re working on or shameless plugs?
Developing a neo-noir thriller for a production company and a one man show for someone that is not me. (I don’t want to give too much away, but I can tell you that it’s about a special kind of teddy bear…)
His play The Blue will be performed on August 10th at 8:30pm. Childhood friends Fiona and Robbie reconnect on Facebook, launching them into a theatrical recollection of their lives together and a mutual revelation of the adults they have become.