MISTER ROBERTS’ NEIGHBORHOOD
Concept & Origination
Brand Style Guide
Print & Digital Collateral
Welcome to Mister Roberts’ Neighborhood—the real life ups and downs of Jonathan Roberts, his family, and his neighbors as they step out of their private lives connecting with local community.
After a decade living “under the Hollywood Sign,” Jonathan has returned with his partner to his childhood hometown. They’ve purchased a modest Tudor house in need of some TLC in a historic neighborhood of a Phoenix, Arizona. The tree lined streets are quaint and charming yet within walking distance of theaters, museums, parks, sporting arenas, and restaurants—small town living in a big city.
Much has changed: current society is disconnected through polarized politics, a current world-wide pandemic, and the popular pursuit of individualism. People everywhere are living together alone; exhausted of selfish unkindness.
A revolution is needed. For Jonathan, the change starts with learning to “love your neighbor” and your neighborhood. Using his natural abilities to transform local resources and spaces he creates meaningful and connective experiences for others.
Be inspired to transform your neighborhood into a great community through Jonathan’s lifestyle and domestic arts content featuring cooking, gardening, home decorating, entertaining, crafts, sewing, DIY fix-it, and neighborhood activism.
To ignite in others to the joy of loving one’s neighbor—and neighborhood—through content featuring cooking, gardening, home decorating, entertaining, crafts, sewing, DIY fix-it, music, and neighborhood activism.
You might say Jonathan’s love for his neighbors actually begins by the example of his parents, Gail and Anna Marie Roberts, who are renowned for their neighborly kindess and service.
When Jonathan moved to Beachwood Canyon in Hollywood, he quickly discovered people who felt like “home.” It wasn’t unusual to find Jonathan picking fruit with Bill Pullman, cooking alongside Michelin star award winner Minh Phan, or square dancing under strings of lights with the Hollywood Orchard. Then there are the times redecorating homes and landscapes with Kari Wuhrer ending in spontaneous singing. Many days he was out foraging the hills under the Hollywood sign discovering the latest seasonal delight while admiring historic homes and stories of past Hollywood stars. Whatever could be harvested might be taken home, combined with some of his garden produce, and transformed into a treat for his partner or delivered to neighbors such as Katie Lowes, Adam Shapiro, or Tom Amandes.
It was a dream world filled with magic and joy for Jonathan. He shared his adventures for family and friends to the account Instagram account “Mister Roberts’ Neighborhood.” Soon others were commenting how he helped them appreciate their neighborhoods with new perspectives and even initiate relationships and projects with their own neighbors.
I am the 7th of 10 children and youngest of two sons of Gail and Anna Marie Roberts. My childhood home was a place that nurtured my talents. There were gardens and trees to be planted with Dad, fruit to be harvest and used with Mom. We subsisted on produce we grew in our large garden, baked bread several times a week, raised hens for eggs and rabbits for meat. Dad ripped out our front lawn to plant a garden in the 70s—decades before hipsters thought it was cool. Mom was often (and still) found sewing through the night: prom dresses, pajamas, baby blessing outfits, wedding gowns, and household decor. Dad would take us on adventures to explore the rugged Arizona deserts, mountains, lakes, and rivers while teaching us about edible plants and wildlife. There were long Sunday walks around the block with Mom greeting and neighbors who needed Dad’s help with irrigation.
The constant activity and resources around our house kept my mind connecting ideas and creating new ways to apply my creative impulses: make a lamp, compose a song on the piano, learn (and teach classes) of gymnastics on our trampolines, paint an illustration, daydream in the limbs of a large fig tree.
“I’ll Walk With You”
I worked with Tyler Glenn via email to create a rehearsal track for the LOVELOUD Choir. After notating each vocal part, I sang and recorded each voice to accelerate learning by the LOVELOUD Choir.
I ended up conducting the LOVELOUD Choir to help inspire their energy and enthusiasm. Here is our live performance of “I’ll Walk With You.”
Initially, ticket sales were very slow. Utah culture is famously conservative. Many residents follow the tenets and leaders of the LDS Church. Attending the festival could have made them appear as if they were disobeying their religious leaders. LOVELOUD board members, producers, and Dan Reynolds personally made phone calls and sent emails to top church leaders asking for their support.
I have a personal relationship with Elder Ronald A. Rasband, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles (top ranking leadership in the church). I served an LDS mission under his leadership in 1996-1998. I called him about my involvement in LOVELOUD and explained my contributions as well as my motivations from being gay and also losing my sister to suicide in 2011. He was personally supportive but could not endorse the festival representing the church. I believe his conversations with the other Apostles were influential in getting their support.
The LDS Church released a statement just 10 days before the 2017 LOVELOUD event, supporting the effort “to foster a community of inclusion in which no one is mistreated because of who they are or what they believe.”
Suddenly ticket sales surged and sold out within days. 17,000 people came to the venue. Thousands more were turned away and many lined the perimeter fencing just to watch. There were no protesters outside the gates. There would be no surprises about why people were attending. They knew. They were “all in” to express love to the LGBTQ community within Utah. For over 6 hours, more than 120 performers and speakers shared messages and music focused on inspiring LGBTQ youth and rallying the community around them.
Believer takes its title from an Imagine Dragons song and features Dan Reynolds’ journey into championing LGBTQ+ acceptance in Utah and the LDS faith. His own questions lead through encounters with close friend Tyler Glenn (Neon Trees), LDS LGBTQ+ youth and adults, and those affected by suicide loss. At the story’s center is the creation and promotion of LOVELOUD.
I am featured in the documentary at the LOVELOUD Festival (performance and interview) and was a panelist for the screening at HBO in Los Angeles.
Production Company: Live Nation Productions for HBO
Director: Don Argott
Producers: Heather Parry, Sheena M. Joyce, Robert Reynolds
Executive Producers: Michael Rapino, Dan Reynolds, Don Argott, Adam Milano, Willie Mercer, Jeff Ciabattarri
Music: Hans Zimmer
Venue: Sundance Film Festival (Documentary Premiere)