I’m Neil Brookshire.

I’m an artist living in Wisconsin.

Here is some of my work.

Panel 1


Regional Theater: Great Lakes Theater, Boise Contemporary Theater, Idaho Dance Theatre, Opera Idaho, Company of Fools, Seattle Novyi Theatre, People’s Light, Cadence Theatre Co, Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival, Door Shakespeare, Renaissance Theaterworks, Next Act Theater, Peninsula Players, Third Avenue Playworks, Tennessee Shakespeare Company, and ten seasons with the Idaho Shakespeare Festival.

Feature Films: The Pact, Coming Up For Air.

Co-author / performer of BENT COMPASS.

Education: BA – Interdisciplinary Studies, Boise State University; MFA – Acting, Northern Illinois University.

Panel 2

Bent Compass

Bent Compass

Written by Neil Brookshire and Colin Sesek

Performed by Neil Brookshire

Originally directed by Phil Darius Wallace

Originally co-produced by The Weidner Center and Dirt Hills Productions

Graphic design by Troy Williams

Following the journey of an Army Medic from fresh recruit to seasoned combat veteran, the text of BENT COMPASS is taken from transcribed interviews detailing the effects of war on a personal level. The stories begin with Colin, years after his deployment, as a student teacher who witnesses an event during one of his teaching assignments. Because of his combat experience, he sees the situation differently than the other teachers. At once personal, reflective, humorous, raw, and candid, these stories honor a man whose unique perspective speaks to both veterans and non-combat civilians alike.

(These stories contain explicit language and descriptions of violence.)


(Please Note: This video contains graphic language and descriptions of violence.)

Next Performance:

University of Wisconsin – Parkside
(details coming mid June)

Canada Fringe 2023

Saskatoon Fringe – Aug 3 – 12 (Performance dates coming soon)

Would you like to help Bent Compass tour Canada?

Click below to make a tax-deductible donation


Colin and I met while working for the Idaho Shakespeare Festival in 2004, the summer before Colin joined the Army. I remember him bringing in samples of MREs (Meals Ready to Eat), and discussing his plans to become an Army Medic.

We stayed in touch throughout Colin’s various deployments, but it wasn’t until 2013 that an idea to collaborate entered our minds. At the time, I was fleshing out the background of a character, one who returns from combat, in Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing. I thought, who better to talk to than Colin? He was incredibly generous and forthcoming with information and insight. Hearing his stories and perspective helped me anchor my performance, and it inspired me to continue exploring his story, his journey. And the more we talked, the more we wanted to explore creating a project based solely on his experiences.

We set about recording weekly phone conversations in an informal interview format. Once the initial recordings were made, written transcriptions and editing began. One of the challenges was to articulate what was at the core of Colin’s experiences and perspectives in a clear way. We had a tremendous amount of raw material, but what cohesively linked everything together? And what was our format?

Around that time I had also been listening to radio interviews of WWI survivors on a BBC podcast. They were recorded when many of them were in their eighties, but the raw, candid storytelling nature of the recordings aligned with our goal, keep it simple. Colin had said from the beginning he wanted it to be as honest as possible, to get at what it’s really like.

The result is a living document that we continue to tweak. The stories cover Colin’s journey from fresh recruit to seasoned combat veteran. It explores how war shaped his thinking and perspective on the world, and how his life has changed since. The text is almost entirely from transcripts, sprinkled with quotes from other writers, among them, Shakespeare. After all, that’s how we met. This unique collaboration uses the best of what we have to offer: our combined skills and experience. He lived it, we wrote it, I perform it. As we continue to present Bent Compass to live audiences, we find it resonates with both civilians and veterans in different but rewarding ways.

community outreach

In addition to the virtual offering, The Weidner Center coordinated public discussions, facilitated by journalist John Maino (Author of FRONTLINES WORLD WAR II – Personal Accounts of Wisconsin Veterans). These discussions provided context for faculty members and staff of UWGB for addressing some of the unique challenges veterans face when returning to civilian life. This kind of community outreach is intrinsic to Bent Compass.

Performance history

1/4/2020 – Ketchum, ID – The Community Library. First public reading

5/25/2020 – Memorial Day Live Audio Broadcast

2/24/2021 – Recorded Performance/Community Talkback. Produced by Kelli Strickland, Artistic/Executive Director of the Weidner Center, Green Bay, WI

6/4 – 6/9/2022 – Cincinnati, OH – Cincy Fringe Primary Line-up

9/2/2022 – Boise, ID – LED

11/9/2022 – Green Bay, WI – The Weidner Center

11/10/2022 – Marinette, WI – Theatre on the Bay, in association with the Weidner Center and UWGB

11/11/2022 – Green Bay, WI – The Tarlton Theatre, presented by Weidner Downtown

4/15/2023 – Milwaukee, WI – Next Act Theatre‘s Rehearsal Studio

5/11/2023 – Chicago, IL – The Cliff Dwellers

Combat Story Podcast

Colin Sesek was featured on Combat Story, a podcast dedicated to sharing veteran stories.

(Click below for the Apple Podcast)

Or watch the podcast on Youtube:

82nd Airborne Medic in Iraq | Special Operations Combat Medic (SOCM) | Playwright | Colin Sesek

In the news

Courtesy of KIVITV
Read the Broadwayworld.com article.

Follow us for the latest updates:


For booking and/or tech rider information please contact.

Panel 3



Watch on Prime Video

Watch on Prime Video

Watch on YouTube

Watch on Prime Video

Watch on YouTube

Watch on YouTube

Watch on YouTube

Watch on YouTube


In Development

Audio Projects


The Sous Chef and the Onion

An unsolved mystery haunts retiring a detective. Journey into an absurd alternate reality where vegetables are political figures, criminals, and victims alike. Can the sous chef find his onion?

Special sound effects by Jeff Rice. Written, directed, edited, produced by Neil Brookshire ©2016

Featuring the voices of John Woodson, Rod Wolfe, Eduardo Placer, Nika Ericson, Jim Lichtscheidl, M.A. Taylor

A Ten Minute Mystery
Everything seems to be in order in Sam's office... except for what isn't there... a plot. Who took it? When was it last seen? 

Written, directed, edited, produced by Neil Brookshire ©2004

Featuring the voices of Ken Rothwell and Karen Wennstrom


A Shrewd Tale of Shakespeare in Idaho

A documentary about Shakespearience! part of the educational outreach program of the Idaho Shakespeare Festival. Partially funded by the NEA's Shakespeare in American Communities.

Written, directed, edited, produced by Neil Brookshire ©2006. Original music by Benjamin Clapp.

As heard on KBSU.

Panel 4