SMOKER at Theatre Row, part of the United Solo Theatre Festival
An Interview with Bob Brader

Indie Theater Now asked Bob Brader a few questions about this upcoming event.

Who are your favorite playwrights?

Spalding Gray, Eric Bogosian, Anna Deavere Smith and John Leguizamo, just to name a few. I think these artists have taken the solo form and made truly amazing contributions!


What's your favorite pastime when you’re not working on a play?

I love to travel whenever we can, and I especially love to drive. There is something very freeing about being behind the wheel of a car. I also started driving very late; I didn’t get my license till I was in my 30s. Now I want to drive everywhere.


Where does this play take place, and how did you choose that location?

This play takes place throughout my life with locations like: amusement parks, a trestle that goes across the Lehigh River in PA, the basement of a high school druggie, a hypnotherapist’s New York office, a bar called The Fox and The Hounds in Los Angeles and a SoulCycle class.


When did you know you wanted to work in the theater, and why?

Theatre is truly magical to me. There is something so powerful about the show being alive for that moment in time. I have loved theatre since I was a kid in the fourth grade and did a solo comedy routine for the whole school. It was intoxicating and I knew after that, the only thing for me was theatre, and I have been doing it ever since.


Why did you want to write this show?

Smoking is horrible for you, and you should be able to just quit. I cannot tell you the number of people that told me that when I was smoking, like quitting was the easiest thing in the world. I wanted to talk about how much is tied up in a smoker’s need and desire to smoke; it goes way beyond addiction. Smoking was a powerful tool in helping me cope with a rough childhood; it was a way to connect with other people and a way to belong. For many years, I felt stronger with my cigarettes than without them. Quitting was not easy, and I think any smoker that quits should be congratulated and celebrated.


posted October 5, 2015
Bob Brader

Bob Brader