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Bert Bernardi Biography

 
Bio:
Bert Bernardi grew up in Milford, Massachusetts not far from Boston (The area now has a much fancier name, Metro West, but its just a sleepy bedroom town no matter what one calls it). His parents, Dora and Andy, were always supportive of their creative son enrolling him in art classes and dance ... (read complete bio)
 

Bio:
Bert Bernardi grew up in Milford, Massachusetts not far from Boston (The area now has a much fancier name, Metro West, but its just a sleepy bedroom town no matter what one calls it). His parents, Dora and Andy, were always supportive of their creative son enrolling him in art classes and dance ... (read complete bio)

Bert Bernardi grew up in Milford, Massachusetts not far from Boston (The area now has a much fancier name, Metro West, but its just a sleepy bedroom town no matter what one calls it). His parents, Dora and Andy, were always supportive of their creative son enrolling him in art classes and dance lessons (though the baseball little league thing never worked out). He got his first big break in the movie business at the tender age of fourteen when he began work as an usher at the Milford Cinemas I and II (Alas, the former vaudeville theatre-turned-movie house is now a parking lot).



It was the University of Bridgeport that brought Bert to Connecticut in 1977. He studied graphic design, advertising, cinema and theatre. Though his concentration of studies was in graphic arts, Bert was honored with the Deans Award for Outstanding Contribution to Theatre for his work as producer of several student productions and an on-campus summer theatre series. He graduated Summa Cum Laude (That's Latin for 'he did a good job').



In the summer of 1980, Bert accepted his first position with a professional theatre company. He worked as the Press Assistant at for the Westport Country Playhouse during its 50th Anniversary season. There he rubbed elbows with not only the Connecticut press, but the likes of Sada Thompson, Farley Granger, Richard Thomas, Glynnis Johns, and Van Johnson (And yes, he really did wear red socks all the time!)



Just out of college, Bert began his work as both a graphic artist and an actor! His first show for Downtown Cabaret Theatre was Grease in 1981, and he's been associated with the Cabaret ever since! Under the guidance of Richard Hallinan, Bert started writing and directing a series of children's shows inspired by the British Pantomimes. Thus, the Downtown Cabaret Theatre Children's Company was born! The company's 25th Anniversary was celebrated during the 2007 season. Bert has written over a hundred new musicals during that time (and almost all of them have some reference to cheese hidden somewhere in the text). The Children's Company was invited to appear on the CBS Early Show for its Halloween Special in 2006.



Over the years, Bert has worked with many other theatre companies including the former Boston Post Road Stage Company in Fairfield, Theatreworks New Milford, Theatre Fairfield at Fairfield University, Surflight Theatre in New Jersey, Wagon Wheel Playhouse in Indiana, Music Theatre North in Upstate New York, the Arundel Barn Playhouse in Maine, Cortland Repertory Theatre in New York and Hofstra USA productions on Long Island. He has worked extensively with Millbrook Playhouse in Pennsylvania where he served as Associate Artistic Director and as Artistic Director at the Theater Barn in New Lebanon, New York.



For his work with the Children's Company, and his other theatrical endeavors, Bert was honored with the Tom Killen Award for Outstanding Contribution to Theatre in Connecticut, presented by the Connecticut Critics Circle in 2004 at the Yale Repertory Theatre. (It was a great night...they had wine and cheese!!)



Bert and his partner Jimmy Johansmeyer created the ridiculously entertaining Pantochino Productions Inc. in 2010. In its brief history, productions have included "Lifeboat Dahling!," "The Bookworms," "Cinderella Skeleton, the Musical," "Teen Santa," "Predictable Heart: The Music of Justin Rugg" and "The Brothers Grimm and a Showgirl."