IF YOU FOLLOW Portland comedy at all, youâ€™ve likely seen or heard of Bri Pruett. Hell, if you don’t follow Portland comedy you probably have. A fixture of the local scene, Pruettâ€™s a regular at Helium and on XRAY.FM, and has performed with Earthquake Hurricane, Late Night Action, Friends with Benedicts, Live Wire! Radio, and is a sometimes contributor to the Mercury. This weekend, she launches STELLAR, a solo show thatâ€™s a mix of stories and jokes. I caught her on the phone to talk about her show, the process of creating a solo performance, and what the future holds.
On STELLAR’s narrative theme:
I have kept a list of every gentleman I have been intimate with. I obsess over this list and I organize it by Zodiac sign, name, and age. I started using it as a storytelling and stand-up prompt about this time last year at a storytelling showcase. Since then, I’ve been using it more and more and I thought that I would love to do it for an hour. When I started working on the show with [director] Jason Rouse, we found a narrative arc through these stories.
On the difference between creating a stand-up act and a solo show:
It actually hasn’t been that different, at least for me. When I work on my stand-up I work on what I want to say, and then I write to that. Or I just get onstage and work on something on my feet. I’ve been using stand-up opportunities as a chance to work on things for this show. So the process of creating the material was similar.
A difference for this show is I am creating a space to talk about more delicate moments in my life. I have this list of guys, and when I was working on it in stand-up, I highlighted only the funniest stories. The biggest laughs. For this show, I included the non-highlighted stories, the ones that may have meaning but aren’t huge laughs.
On moving to Los Angeles:
I am moving to LA in early 2017. I figure I’ll leave during peak weather wrist-cutting season. My plans are to go heavy into personal development. I do so much stand-up in Portland, it’s wonderful, but the pace of my life has gotten crazy, so I’m actually going to go to LA to slow down a little bit.