Stephen Briggs (1951–) is, in his own words, "a civil servant who dabbles in amateur dramatics". However, through his drama work, he has become heavily involved with the subsidiary works and merchandise surrounding Terry Pratchett's Discworld.
In 1991, Briggs adapted Wyrd Sisters for the Studio Theatre Club of Abingdon, Oxfordshire. with permission from Pratchett. He played the part of Duke Felmet in the production. This was his introduction to the Discworld. He greatly enjoyed the book, and the challenge of staging it, and went on to adapt Mort the following year, in which he played Death. A subsequent production of the Mort adaptation by Progress Theatre received good reviews from Discworld Monthly who were happy that Pratchett had not been turned into a pantomime.
In 1993, they adapted Guards! Guards! and Briggs played the Patrician, Lord Vetinari, for the first time. He has since reprised the role in various other plays, and on official occasions such as the second Discworld Convention's Maskerade Dinner and the twinning of Ankh-Morpork with Wincanton, Somerset. Most representations of the Patrician are now modelled to a greater or lesser extent on Briggs, and many fans now find it hard to imagine Lord Vetinari looking any other way. The Discworld plays have become a tradition of the Studio Theatre Club, and Briggs now receives the manuscripts in advance, enabling the plays to premiere at the same time as the book is released.
Reading Guards! Guards!, Briggs became fascinated with the feeling that Ankh-Morpork had a shape; that it had a solid existence in the imagination, despite Pratchett's insistence that he had made it up as he went along. This feeling lead to The Streets of Ankh-Morpork, the first Discworld map, created by Briggs and Pratchett and painted by Stephen Player in 1993. The Discworld Mapp, A Tourist Guide to Lancre and Death's Domain followed.
Briggs had created an extensive database of Discworld information by this time (it has been suggested that he knows more about Pratchett's world than Pratchett does), and this was compiled into The Discworld Companion, an encyclopedia of Discworld information (including some that had never before left Pratchett's computer), published in 1995. It was later updated in 1998 and 2003.
Stephen Briggs has also been involved with such spin-offs as the Discworld Diaries and Nanny Ogg's Cookbook and has also had his adaptions of the books published. Briggs has also read several of the unabridged audiobook versions of Discworld novels released by Isis Publishing and by Harper Collins in the US, where his recordings have received two industry awards and been nominated for a third.
He has also become involved in selling Discworld related items. It started with the Unseen University scarf, and now includes pins, T-shirts, key-rings and tea towels. This cottage industry is called "CMOT Dibbler", after Ankh-Morpork's most persistent merchant venturer.
- http://www.studiotheatreclub.com/ - Stephen Briggs' own website