Bill Robling’s Many Facets22 Dec 2015, Posted by Get To Know Bill Robling in
Bill Robling’s Many Facets
In this blog I am always pointing out Benjamin Franklin’s diverse interests and accomplishments. I attempt to bring the same diversity and flexibility to my portrayal of Dr. Franklin. You will never find me to be just a man dressed up in an eighteenth-century suit, spouting quotes. What I hope I bring to my interpretation of the life of Franklin are tools uniquely suited to the task. I have training, and forty years’ experience as an actor. I have portrayed Benjamin Franklin in a number of films and videos, as well as a stage presentation that has gone on for eleven years.
I am also a student of history, having logged well over two or three thousand hours in the study of Franklin’s life and times. I have worked as an educator. I have also been engaged in business and entrepreneurship, just as Franklin did. And did I mention that, just as Benjamin Franklin did, I love and appreciate the contribution of women to our life and culture. Franklin was unique in his time in his appreciation of women, and his acknowledgement of their intelligence and abilities.
Sadly, some of that thinking that would limit women in the eighteenth century are still at work in modern American society. Ben Franklin is often wrongly characterized as a “dirty old man”, or some such language, because he spent so much of his time with women. In truth, he was charmed and enriched by them, and I plead guilty to the same enchantment. All of this commonality, in addition to my training and experience in theatre, music and communication, make me ideally suited and extremely delighted to appear in diverse venues as Benjamin Franklin.