Brian Edward is a performing and literary artist, director and playwright, as well as an avid scholar of art and film. He is the author of several produced plays including Spring Passing at Dandridge (2001), Angelo of Mercy (2002), and Shakespeare Alive (2003). His many short plays and vignettes have featured in numerous cabarets, theater festivals and in Pittsburgh’s annual AIDS benefit. His sketch comedy cabarets Insania! and Hilariousity! made their mark as mainstays in the Berkshires’ summer stock season from 1998 to 2000, and in 1997 his one-act play The Tenantsreceived an award of merit from the estate of author Edith Wharton. Brian has also been a featured guest lecturer for the Berkshire Playwrights Festival alongside New York State Theater Educator of the Year Macey Levin and playwright Susan Dworkin.
Recent performance credits include Lilias Pastia in Carmen (Pittsburgh Opera), Mother Courage (Pittsburgh Playhouse Repertory Co.), Amish Burlesque (Checkmate! Theatrical), Born Yesterday(Playhouse Conservatory Co.). Brian was named among the top supporting male performers in Pittsburgh by the Post Gazette in 2001 for his role as Corin in As You Like It (Immersion Theater), and among the top leading performers in 2002 for his role as Clive/Cathy in Cloud 9 (Playhouse Conservatory Company).
Brian is the creator and director of Amish Burlesque featuring Goody Plenty & The Amlets, the musical comedy cabaret with arrangements by Emmy Award-winning composer Jace Vek. Since its humble beginning as a 10-minute comedy sketch in 2000, Amish Burlesque re-premiered at the State Theater Center for the Arts in 2006, ran for six consecutive weeks at downtown Pittsburgh’s Cabaret Theater, and is now touring the country in cooperation with Checkmate! Theatrical, the performing arts arm of Chessboard Creative.
From 2003 to 2006, Brian served as Art Curator to famed industrialist Joseph A. Hardy and his celebrated collection of fine art, artifacts, antique automobiles and aircraft, estimated at over 40 million dollars, on display at Nemacolin Woodlands Resort. There, Brian conceived and directed several national and international art exhibitions, working with such popular American artists as Howard Behrens, Glenna Goodacre, and Burton Morris. In 2006, in cooperation with L’Editions Laurier Dubé, Paris, he successfully engineered an exclusive exhibition featuring the art of James Coignard, France’s most renowned contemporary painter. It marked the legendary artist’s first personal appearance and major exhibition in the United States in over a decade.
During Hardy’s term as Commissioner of Fayette County, PA, Brian was called upon to select and coordinate the installation of several public sculptures and murals as part of the revitalization of downtown Uniontown (the county-seat) and Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell’s Economic Stimulus Plan.
Brian has hosted and emceed several major cultural events including the 2006 “Savoir Affair,” alongside Sara Moulton, Executive Chef of Gourmet magazine and host of Food Network’s show Sara’s Secrets, as well as Antiques Roadshowappraiser and former President of Christie’s East, Kathleen Guzman. He has been a featured presenter at Nemacolin Woodlands’ “Royal Reception,” hosted annually by Robin Leach, and has also had the privilege of lecturing on Mr. Hardy’s illustrious collection to such notables as Carol Cleveland and Dick Clark.
During his time as Art Curator he published two books; The Hardy Family Art Collection Volume IV and Wright Perspectives, a detailed look at the influence of architect Frank Lloyd Wright in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania, including interviews with architect and Wright student David Merritt, Bernadine Hagan, and The Lord Palumbo of Walbrook.
Brian served on the board of directors to Ballet Lafayette from 2004 to 2006 and is a charter member of The Gifford Pinchot Society. He is frequently quoted in print and radio, and has been a recurrent guest on the CBS-KDKA morning show, Pittsburgh LIVE Today.