BRANDY HOANG COLLIER
Brandy Hoang Collier is a writer, composer, and theatre-maker from deep in the heart of Texas. She proudly identifies as Asian-American, disabled, queer, and utterly charming. Above all, she is a storyteller, and the concept of bios being a list of all the stuff we’ve done just feels super boring to her. Feel free to visit the work page if that's what you're into.
Collier studied ethnomusicology and literary rhetoric at Texas A&M. (She also minored in Anthropology, and it's important to her that you know that.) Though she learned very little from her undergraduate studies about the actual process of creating theatre, Collier somehow sweet-talked her way into being allowed to write and produce a short musical as her capstone project. It was basically a term paper set to music (which is exactly as unbearable as it sounds), but the show was about a virus that kills literally everyone and the crew somehow crammed an entire steel drum band onstage, so that was at least funny. Plus, some very cool professors in the Performance Studies department offered extra credit for attending, so it sold out every night.
After college, Collier was working at an online marketing agency in Austin, Texas that slowly mangled her soul, when—suddenly!—she was overtaken by a sirenic whim to leave her steady job and move to New York to write musicals (which, again, she had essentially never done before).
Thanks to the bizarre tastes of some phenomenal human beings at NYU Tisch, Collier was able to attend the Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program. There, she discovered she's actually an amazing writer, and she should do it forever. Collier feels completely comfortable making that claim about herself because she lived her whole life never being amazing at anything, and it's really easy to tell the difference.
In those two years at NYU, Collier honed her craft, collaborated on two full-length musicals, earned her MFA, and—perhaps most importantly—met some of the most talented, creative, curious, and kind-hearted people on the face of the Earth. Including her friend and business partner Jessie Field.
After graduating into the apocalyptic hellscape of 2020, Collier and Field founded Root Beer Occasion Theatre Company. With help from their team and community, they're currently producing safe, in-person theatre, and broadcasting it online to bring hope and entertainment to humans everywhere.
Collier can be found unraveling conventions and inciting chaos in the theatre world through her paradigm-shifting storytelling and general vibes. All that to say, she’s currently writing and creating, and she’s actually doing ridiculously well. (Again, you can read more about her actual work on the works page, and hopefully soon on an updates page.)
But in the story of Collier’s day-to-day life, she’s just trying to piece together a little existence from different jobs, gigs, friends, loves, books, baths, meals, and mysteries.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
"How do I say your name?"
I have, in the past, answered to “Brenda Hawang Callyer," so don't beat yourself up if you thought that was my name. But here's how I say it:
BRAN • DEE HWONG KOH • LEE • AY
candy song holy day
Or, in a pinch, you can call me "HoCo" which is just a cute thing I'm trying to start.
"Where are you from?"
San Antonio, Texas.
"No, like... where are you from?"
Really, I'm from Texas! It's one of the fifty United States. Of America!
"Alright, fine! What race are you?"
Oh, I see. Why does everything have to be about race? Just kidding, I literally never shut up about it. I have mixed Asian and European ancestry—largely Vietnamese on my mom's side and German on my dad's side. In my research, I've found my heritage on either side to be equally rich in both agricultural tradition and grotesque bedtime stories used to discipline children.
PROUDEST NON-THEATRE ACHIEVEMENTS
That's right, I do stuff other than theatre! Such as...
unlocking the secret ending of The Witness within the first five minutes of ever playing the game
instructing my friends on how to use creek water to regain use of our toilets when the electric water pump lost power at our rental cabin
parallel parking a U-Haul van on Coney Island Ave while simultaneously de-escalating a confrontation between my friend's Turkish mother and an aggravated Italian man from the neighborhood
that one time I held out my hand and a baby squirrel came running across a field, up my body, and directly into my palm
attending at least a dozen separate Dr. Dog concerts, including their experimental art show in 2015 and also one with my dad in 2021