Theresa has played piano since the age of three and is a sought after regional pianist in Arkansas. “I’m more of an “ear” player, but I can play through sheet music when needed.”
Theresa’s writing career began in high school when she was placed in journalism. “I didn’t even want to be in that class,” Theresa admitted. “I knew they put in a lot more hours than I really wanted to commit. I tried to get the counselor to change it, but she thought I would do really well. So, I stuck it out, became Sports Editor since I played volleyball in junior high and that was more sports than anyone else on the staff had (though my real love was feature profile writing), and ended up taking it to the next level in college.
During college, Theresa studied mass communications and music at the University of Central Arkansas in Conway during the day and was a radio disc jockey at night. “My first radio job was at KVOM in my small town of Morrilton. I was only there for eight months, before I moved on up to Little Rock to work at B98.5--which later would be owned by Citidel. Ultimately, I moved over to Clear Channel stations and met a lot of country stars. Those were some fun years,” Bertram said.
Theresa took a 10-year hiatus to start a family and finished up her educational journey with a Public Relations degree from Arkansas Tech University. “I was a better-focused student my second time around,” Theresa said. “I would be a professional student if I had the funds and time to do so.”
With children old enough to allow Theresa to focus on professional pursuits once again, she began working as a producer/on-air talent in 2011 for AIRS Radio, which is a reading service for the blind and visually impaired offered by the Division Services for the Blind-a branch off of the Division of Human Services in Arkansas. She also started volunteering with local school associations and the historic Rialto Theatre. “I have always been attracted to this haunting building,” Theresa said referring to the Rialto. “It calls to you when you pass by it on the road. I love It.” Theresa does everything from producing music programs to making the popcorn. “It’s a great place to spend time and give my children a memorable place to grow up in. I will always love this theatre.”
Theresa became a copy writer for the local newspaper, when the editor came early to one of the shows at the Rialto and offered her a job. “The best jobs are the ones that are given to you,” she said. “Also, I have a hard time saying ‘no’ to people if there is a way I can do what is requested.” A year later she was offered the editor position in the neighboring county. “You just never know what people are going to want from you. I keep thinking of that movie with Jim Carrey and how he had to say ‘yes’ to everything. If it isn’t illegal and time permits, I try to do it if I can.”
And with all the extra time Theresa has after working two jobs and raising three school-aged children, she has started her own publishing business, Petit Jean Media, which is a niche-fundraising group of magazines-one of her favorites being Onstage Arkansas. “I have always been an entertainment cheerleader for as long as I can remember. If I think hard enough, I feel it probably started with those entertainers in Las Vegas. They performed for me, and I was happy to be the enthusiastic audience member night after night. It was a magical and unique childhood. I was very lucky.”
Theresa is excited to join the writing team of Broadway World. “I know when you think of Arkansas, ‘Broadway stars’ is not the first, or maybe even the last, thing that pops into your mind. I beg to differ though. Arkansas has an abundant amount of talent, and not only do we entertain for our own personal fancies, but we raise our children in this environment as well. We are a close-nit group of people, and I want to show how awesome Arkansas entertainers are to the rest of the world through Broadway World.”