Three Questions For Food Network's Alton Brown
The authority on all things edible is making his way to the region for an upcoming performance.
Food Network star and authority on all things edible, Alton Brown is making his way to the region for an upcoming performance. Titled Alton Brown Live: Eat Your Science, the show will bring food demonstrations, musical numbers, and other antics to Stamford’s Palace Theatre on October 29. Known for his encyclopedic food knowledge, Brown became a household name hosting 14 seasons of the hit show Good Eats. He has since appeared in a host of other programs in addition to releasing several successful cookbooks. We caught up with the food aficionado, to get a sense of his upcoming performance and the return of Good Eats.
What do you have in store for your stage show?
My stage shows are strictly born out of a love of ’70s variety-TV shows, like The Flip Wilson Show and Sonny & Cher — the shows that combine skit comedy with different kinds of acts. I had done a lot of onstage cooking demos, but I had always wanted to do something bigger, where I could have larger props and really strange demonstrations. And then I realized that if I was going to do a variety show, there needs to be music, so I put a band together that started writing songs about food, and I involved audience interaction. It even has some game-show elements in it.
Are you working on any upcoming projects?
We just finished a new run of Iron Chef that’s called Iron Chef Showdown. So, we are making Iron Chef America again, but we are changing the format a little bit by taking things from Iron Chef Gauntlet and using them for Showdown. We are also taking another run at Gauntlet, and I am also working on the digital sequel to Good Eats because it is something fans really want. I know it is going to be online, but who knows [which streaming service] is going to get it. I am doing a tour in the fall and planning another one in 2018, and I am also working on a book of food essays. You are the first person I am telling this to, but I do have a brand-new culinary game show that is very much for food nerds and food geeks that I am getting ready to pitch. It’s actually a food-quiz show that doesn’t have any cooking in it — it’s more about knowledge and sense of taste.
Do you feel producing an educational program like Good Eats is very different from making shows like Iron Chef or writing cookbooks?
I don’t think of one as being more educational than the other. But the different forms of media do require very different muscles. TV and theatrical work are kind of two sides of the same coin, because they take place in moving time. Books are the hardest things I do, but I try to produce them in ways that make them — at least creatively — a project. So even something as daunting as a book, you find an avenue that hasn’t been done before. I am always looking to try something new, even if I fail. I would rather be original than good.