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Fanbase Press Interviews Brandie June on the Launching ‘Truly Outrageous’ at the 2023 Hollywood Fringe Festival

The following is an interview with Brandie June regarding the production, Truly Outrageous, at the 2023 Hollywood Fringe Festival. In this interview, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief Barbra Dillon chats with June about the inspiration behind the production, working with the talented cast and crew to bring the show to life, how you can purchase tickets, and more!

Barbra Dillon, Fanbase Press Editor-in-Chief: Congrats on the recent launch of Truly Outrageous in this year’s Hollywood Fringe Festival!  For those who may be unfamiliar, what can you tell us about the premise of this show?

Brandie June: Truly Outrageous is a parody of the ’80s cartoon, Jem and the Holograms (though you don’t need to be familiar with the TV series to enjoy the show). It’s a new musical about two girl bands facing off in an epic battle of the bands. The heroine also inherits a sentient hologram-creating machine that transforms her into a pink-haired popstar. Our show is campy, retro, queer, sparkly, and a hilarious good time. We recent won the Producers’ Encore Award and were nominated for Best Musical at the Hollywood Fringe Festival.

BD: What can you tell us about your shared creative process in working with the talented cast and crew to bring this production to life?

BJ: I began writing Truly Outrageous eight years ago when the Jem and the Holograms live-action movie came out. I was disappointed that the movie lacked the fun and the camp of the original TV series, so I decided to write my own parody as a stage production. I wrote the book, but I not a musician. I discussed the project with several songwriters over the years, but it never worked out. At one point, I figured I’d have to shelve the whole thing. Luckily, I hadn’t entirely given up hope when I connected with longtime friend and brilliant songwriter Rebecca McGlynn. Soon after, we decided to partner on this project, COVID hit, and the project again stalled. Eventually, the timing was right and we resumed work on Truly Outrageous. We built our cast and crew from theatre friends and auditioning. I might have started this project on my own, but it takes a village to put on a musical of this size. I feel extremely fortunate that everyone on this team, both cast and crew, is incredibly talented and passionate about the project.


BD: At Fanbase Press, our #StoriesMatter initiative endeavors to highlight the impact that stories can have on audiences of various mediums.  How do you feel that Truly Outrageous’ story may connect with and impact audiences?

BJ: My goal with Truly Outrageous was to create accessible theatre that pays tribute as much as it parodies Jem and the Holograms. The T.V. series had plenty of fun camp, but also a message of diversity and acceptance at its core. Our show has plenty of glamour and glitter, fashion and fame, but just as important, it also features a story and cast as diverse as Synergy is magical. We are a family of men, women, and non-binary individuals. Our members are queer, trans, straight, Black, Asian, White, able-bodied, people who use wheelchairs, people with invisible illness, people who adore glitter, and all who have a love of the ’80s and killer comedic timing.

We also made sure to create a show that was as accessible as possible, which included hiring ASL interpreters for d/Deaf and Hard of Hearing for one of our shows. I also did a walkthrough of studio/stage with Cindy Kapp, our stage manager who uses a wheelchair, to make sure the venue was wheelchair & limited-mobility accessible.

BD: What makes the Hollywood Fringe Festival an ideal venue for this productions?

BJ: The Hollywood Fringe Festival is an excellent place for new work to premiere. It’s a community of theatre-lovers who are incredibly supportive each other. And since so many new productions launch at the Fringe Festival, the Festival provides a lot of networking opportunities, informational talks, and additional resources for launching a show. While we all put in a lot of work bringing Truly Outrageous to life, it was ideal to do it in such a supportive environment.

BD: The show is appearing at studio/stage throughout June.  Are there any future plans to perform the show at other venues?

BJ: Yes! Though our show wrapped last week, we’ve been awarded the Hollywood Encore Producers’ Award which means we’ll have another performance on July 7th at 8:30 p.m./PT at the same venue. Both in-person and virtual tickets are available here.

BD: Are there any other upcoming projects that you would care to share with our readers?

BJ: Truly Outrageous has been my main focus for the last few months, but I have two books out, Gold Spun and Curse Undone, which are a YA fantasy Rumpelstiltskin retelling. I post all the news about my books and plays up on my site at

BD: Lastly, what would you like to tell readers who want to learn more about and purchase tickets for Truly Outrageous?

BJ: My favorite review about our show is “This show read the assignment on how to glitter and be gay!” (Socks Whitmore, Stage Raw), and that definitely describes Truly Outrageous. For tickets and reviews, readers can check out our Hollywood Fringe Festival listing. And future updates of the show will also be posted on my site.


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