Impressionist, comedian, satirist, translator, columnist, writer, presenter, ballroom dancer, actor, Rory Bremner is either multitalented or indecisive or both. Born in Edinburgh in 1961 and educated at Wellington College and Kings College London, (BA Hons, French and German) Rory is perhaps best known for writing and starring in the political satire show Bremner, Bird and Fortune, for nearly twenty years a mainstay of Channel 4’s comedy output. He won back-to-back BAFTAs for Top Comedy Performance in 1995 and 1996, together with three Royal Television Society and two British Comedy Awards.
Most recently Rory has captained on the comedy panel show The Imitation Game for ITV. He also returned to the Edinburgh Fringe in 2018 for an impressions-packed performance with co-star Jan Ravens.
In 2017 he fronted an episode of BBC’s Horizon – ADHD and Me with Rory Bremner, to uncover the science of the condition. This followed on from his Radio 4 documentary which explored his own self-diagnosis of ADHD.
2015 saw the return of Rory Bremner’s Coalition Report after 20 years! In the same year, Rory tackled the General Election with three side-splitting episodes, he took on the many faces of politics in a satirical and theatrical report alongside a list of other well-known comedians.
Never one to duck a challenge, Rory competed on Strictly Come Dancing in 2011, partnering Erin Boag and specialising in waltz and quickstep before losing out to Nancy Dell’Olio in the Cha Cha Cha. There will be a reckoning.
Meanwhile, he has co-written and presented two satirical Radio 4 series, Tonight and Bremner’s One Question Quiz, toured the country recording Rory Bremner’s Great British Views for ITV, hosted the quizshow Face the Clock for Channel 4, and written and presented a documentary on Scottish Independence, Rory Goes to Hollyrood (BBC). In 2013 he made his theatrical debut in Trevor Nunn’s production of Noel Coward’s Relative Values (Bath Theatre Royal) prior to a West End run at the Pinter Theatre. He also translates operas and plays and is one of the country’s top after-dinner speakers and awards presenters.
His breakthrough TV appearance was on Wogan in 1985, following which he had his own series on the BBC from 1986 to 1991. He has since guested on many of Britain’s top comedy shows on radio and TV, including Spitting Image, Whose Line is it Anyway, Have I Got News for You, Mock the Week (team captain for two series), The News Quiz, The Now Show, 7 day Sunday and QI. He appeared more often than any other guest on Britain’s top talk shows, Wogan and Parkinson. Rory often guests on The Andrew Marr Show, where he reviews current political events through his many characters.
Besides live tours and numerous corporate engagements, he has also presented documentaries on Scottish Soldiers and Diaries for BBC4 and traced his family history on Who Do You Think You Are (BBC).
Rory Bremner With John Bird and John Fortune, he also wrote and appeared in numerous specials, including Between Iraq and a Hard Place, My Government and I and Silly Money, and a book, You Are Here, published in 2005 (a stockpile of satirical ammunition – Daily Telegraph).
Meanwhile, he’s translated three operas: two from French, Carmen (2001) and Orpheus in the Underworld (Scottish Opera, 2011) and one from German (Der Silbersee, 1997) together with the Bertolt Brecht play A Respectable Wedding (Young Vic, 2008). He is a regular contributor to The FT, The Telegraph, The New Statesman and Radio Times, for whom he has interviewed Michael Parkinson and David Frost.
When not working (!) he enjoys travel, opera, cooking, sport (especially cricket- he had a 1985 Top 20 hit as The Commentators with N.n..nineteen not out) and motor racing – he owns a 1963 Alfa Spyder. He is also a Patron of ADHD Foundation.
Married to the artist Tessa Campbell Fraser, with two daughters, Ava and Lila, he divides his time (badly) between London, Wiltshire and the Scottish Borders.