Exeter’s theatre companies: ‘In Bed With My Brother’ in interview

I have written a piece in Exeter Life this month about Exeter’s homegrown theatre talent. This is the first in a series of three interviews in full with local theatre companies.

Innovative and edgy In bed with my brother’s Nora, Dora and Kat were supported by The bike Shed as part of their graduate scheme. Their last production WE ARE IAN (a huge success on the Edinburgh fringe) focusses on generation X’s acid house scene.

‘There’s some really exciting Theatre being made in Exeter at the moment, and everyone should be supporting it” 

pic by Matt Austin. Article: Exeter's theatre companies: 'In Bed With My Brother' in interview, Exploring Exeter.

Pic by Matt Austin

Tell me a little about the company and how it works:

There’s just three of us (Nora, Dora and Kat). We don’t really know how it works, we just like performing together and being idiots. We make mime work because we hate talking on stage. We like dancing, so we do a lot of dancing. We like making stuff that’s hopefully fun and accessible, but we’re still working out what we’re actually doing.

How did it all begin and long has it been running for?

The three of us met at University and we’ve been inseparable every since – except for this one year when Nora moved to Holland and we were separated. We’ve been performing together for a couple of years now. We all wanted to carry on performing after University, so it was inevitable that if we were going to carry on performing, that we’d do it together.

pic by Matt Austin. Article: Exeter's theatre companies: 'In Bed With My Brother' in interview, Exploring Exeter.

pic by Matt Austin.

What have you performed / what shows?

We have two shows under our tiny belts. Our first show was more of an installation that we did in a disused toilet in Bristol. It was called Twinkle Toes, and it was a syrupy, grotesque homage to Kat’s days at a kids Theatre school. It was pretty weird. Our more recent show, and the one that we’ve touring for the past year is WE ARE IAN. It’s about our mate Ian, and the acid house movement in 1989.

What makes you different from all the other theatre companies in Exeter?

We’re not exactly conventional theatre. We’re influenced by loads of different artistic practices, so what we make is a mish-mash of ideas and disciplines. Mostly, we make physical clown and mime work, but we dance, play a lot with endurance and we also use film in our work. Music is also a massive component in our shows.  We’ve had a lot of reviews which comment that they’ve never seen Theatre like ours before. I guess in that sense, we’re pretty different. 

pic by Matt Austin. Article: Exeter's theatre companies: 'In Bed With My Brother' in interview, Exploring Exeter.

pic by Matt Austin

What are your plans for the future?

We’re still touring WE ARE IAN for the next year or so, but we’re also in the early days of making our next show. It’s a bit of a secret though – mostly because we don’t know what it’s gonna be yet…

How would you describe Exeter’s theatre scene?

“There’s a lot of valuable Theatre being made and developed in Exeter. It would be great for the Theatre scene in the UK to recognise more the quality of Regional Theatre making, and pay more attention to it, rather than focus on everything just happening in London. Venues like the Bikeshed have a really great programme of locally produced, and also touring shows. It can sometimes be difficult to get national coverage down here because we’re not central. But we think that there’s a bit of a buzz forming around Exeter at the moment, and hopefully we’ll start developing more of an artistic hub down here. We’re gradually persuading all our mates to move to Exeter, and then we can form the drama club of our dreams.”

Do pick up a copy of Exeter Life to read the full article!

More links you might like:

Review of WE ARE IAN at the Bike Shed Theatre.

Exeter’s theatre companies: ‘The Young Pretenders’ in interview

Exeter’s theatre companies: ‘Paddleboat Theatre Company’ in interview

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