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s t a g e L I F E

The Fake Brothers

By Gwenyfar Rohler

“I don’t think it matters, the ‘I’s’ or the ‘we’s,’”

muses Caylan Mckay. “We both have the same goals for Fake Brothers — though we have different end goals for ourselves.” He looks at his collaborator, Patrick Basquill, who nods and grins as Mckay begins to explain their hopes for the newly formed film and performance company. Perhaps “newly formed” is a bit of a misnomer. Maybe “newly legitimized with a corporate tax number” would be a more accurate description. I remember seeing them perform under the moniker four years ago for Improv Night at the former Nutt Street Comedy Room. The long-form improv piece began with blowing up a filing cabinet and ended with Mckay marrying a chicken. Somehow it was believable that these two crazy teenagers would do this, and as an audience member it was so captivating you just didn’t want it to end. Now they are launching a weekly show, “Fake Brothers Presents,” on Thursday nights, 7 p.m., at City Stage.

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Even though they are both less than a quarter of a century old, Mckay and Basquill are veterans of Wilmington’s theater scene. Seriously. To say they grew up in children’s theater here is an understatement. They cite The Wizard of Oz as the forming of their partnership: Basquill messed up a scene change and Mckay came to his rescue onstage. They’ve been virtually inseparable ever since, with Fake Brothers emerging organically from their collaborations. Not to say that they are not real brothers — though the duo notes that the relationship fulfills brotherly needs they both have. Mckay, as the youngest member of his family, gets a chance to pass on his accumulated wisdom in the guise of an older brother, and Basquill, the oldest sibling in his family, enjoys having an older brother for a change. “When we do a show we don’t just do a sketch show, we don’t just do an improv show, we don’t just show one of our movies. We kind of try to involve everything — and make this into a giant event more than anything!” Mckay grins and Basquill nods in agreement again. Together they are a study in contrasts: McKay is the classic “dark and handsome” and speaks in direct, specific terms about goals and action steps. Basquill’s sandy blond hair and baby-faced grin will let him play the young romantic lead for many more years — which is part of what Wilmington audiences know him for: an The Art & Soul of Wilmington

Photograph by Mark steelman

A pair of talented young veterans of the Port City’s theater scene launch an ambitious new weekly adventure

October Salt 2015  

The Art & Soul of Wilmington

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