What's Upintheair with actor & director Brian Cochrane?

The Vancouver International Fringe Festival is coming up, which means it's time to highlight another incredible artist and a rEvolver Festival alumni: actor/director Brian Cochrane. Brian Cochrane is an award-winning director and performer who also writes and produces for the stage. His show Vampires in Barcelona (of which he is the writer and performer) was part of our 2017 rEvolver festival and we are proud to recommend this show to Vancouver Fringe Festival go-ers. 

Some of Brian's directing credits include: Director of David Freeman’s Creeps for Realwheels Theatre – the first ever production of that play to employ an integrated cast (winner of the 2017 Jessie Award for Outstanding Production and nominated for Outstanding Direction); Performer/Co-Producer of The Bomb-itty of Errors for Twenty Something Theatre (winner of the 2012 Jessie Award for Outstanding Ensemble Performance) and remounted at the Arts Club and Belfry Theatres, respectively. At the 2014 Jessie Awards he received the Ray Michal Prize for Most Promising New Director.  Brian directors all over Canada and will return to Whitehorse this winter to direct Christopher Durang’s Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike. Ages ago he played in the band Carbon Dating Service, which performed in nine provinces, released three albums, and twice recorded for the CBC. He has an MFA in Directing from UBC and a BFA in Acting from the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon.

We asked Brian What's Upintheair and many other questions. 

Actor/Director Brian Cochrane

Actor/Director Brian Cochrane

Describe yourself in the format of a character synopsis.

Brian is an introverted extrovert who is idealistic, loyal (to a fault?), and often speaks louder than necessary without seeming to realize it.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

I have managed to assemble an amazing group of friends.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever done for a theatre project?

Besides a lot of working for little to no money? Hmm... in 2015 Arlen Tom & I drove the set of Stationary: a recession-era musical from Vancouver to Barrie and back in a 24-foot moving van. We played for a week in Barrie and spent two weeks driving. It was a truly excellent experience that I would repeat in a heartbeat.


Do you have any hidden talents?

I can play the trombone decently (even well, with enough notice)... I also rap sometimes... I make really good hummus.

What's one show and/or event in the Vancouver theatre scene you have loved?

Straight Jacket Winter by Esther Duquette & Gilles Poulin-Denis. I feel like I stole a lot from it for Vampires in Barcelona, and that's a pretty high compliment I'd say.

If you could only use one prop for every single show you do from now on, what would it be?

I guess tearaway pants would be a costume, not a prop, so I'll say a confetti cannon.

If you could sit down with any theatre artist living or dead and have a long chat, who would you sit down with?

Caryl Churchill.

As a director, what's the strangest note you've ever had to give to an actor and/or company?

Directing East of Berlin was the first time I directed onstage sex (there were two scenes!) and I remember saying (in both scenes) "I need to see the moment it goes in."


Seeing as how one of Upintheair Theatre's mandate involves supporting the next generation of theatre makers, what advice would you give to an emerging artist living in Canada?

Try to live a life where your actions are in line with your values. Try to leave collaborators better than you found them. Take care of your body and mind. And always be honest with yourself and others.

Describe your theatre school experience in 3 key words?

BFA in Acting: Very long days. MFA in Directing: Reading. Doubting. Believing.

What are you both most excited about right now?

I'm super excited to be working on Vampires in Barcelona with Jamie again. It's exactly what I want to be doing artistically and I love our collaborative relationship. Outside of theatre, I'm growing a tomato plant for the first time ever and it looks like I'll be able to eat something off of it... Very excited about that!

Now finally… what’s Upintheair? Give us the details of your show? Juicy details. Date/time/venue/tickets$?

Vampires in Barcelona, which premiered at the 2017 rEvolver Festival, will be at the 2018 Vancouver Fringe! Vampires in Barcelona is a theatrical storytelling show about falling in love, leaving home for the first time, and the magical power of fear. It feels like a mixture between a storytelling night like The Flame or The Moth, stand-up comedy, and a really good travel tale in a pub. Jo Ledingham said that it's "Very funny, offbeat - and I hesitate to call it sweet - but it's sweet".

Vampires in Barcelona

Written & Performed by Brian Cochrane Directed, etc. by Jamie King

Arts Umbrella - 1286 Cartwright Street on Granville Island. A Skinny Walrus Project

 Tickets here: https://tickets.vancouverfringe.com/shows/vampires%20in%20barcelona/events

Sep 7 @ 6:15pm , Sep 8 @ 3:00pm , Sep 8 @ 10:15pm,  Sep 9 @ 6:30pm , Sep 10 @ 8:15pm,              Sep 11 @ 10:00pm,  Sep 13 @ 6:15pm,  Sep 14 @ 8:15pm,  Sep 15 @ 10:00pm

 Find us on page 57 of the Vancouver Fringe Program Guide: http://vancouverfringe.com/pdfs/2018/WebProgramGuide2018.pdf

You can also check out www.skinnywalrusprojects.com

Vampires in Barcelona Promo Image

Vampires in Barcelona Promo Image