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Non-profit Org.U.S. Postage
PAIDHartford, CTPermit No. 751
The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts166 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, CT 06106-1621
C O m I N g U P A T T H e b U S H N e l l
Beethoven Symphony No. 2Hartford Symphony Orchestra Masterworks Series8p.m. (3 p.m. on January 11) Belding Theater
Hot Chocolate SoulDoors open at 8 p.m.Autorino Great Hall
AVENUE QThe Hartford Financial Services Group Broadway SeriesPerformance times varyMortensen Hall
Ha! Ha! Hartford!Sponsored by United Technologies Corporation8:30 p.m.Belding Theater
An Evening with Kevin Smith7:30 p.m.Mortensen Hall
Aaron CoplandHartford Symphony Connections: American Masters Series7:30 p.m.Belding Theater
GOD: Big Questions Bigger QuestionsThe Connecticut Forum8 p.m.Mortensen Hall
JERSEY BOYSThe Hartford Financial Services Group Broadway SeriesPerformance times varyMortensen Hall
Beethoven Symphony No. 3, EroicaHartford Symphony Orchestra Masterworks Series8 p.m.Belding Theater
Hot Chocolate SoulDoors open at 8 p.m.Autorino Great Hall
Dance, Sing, and Play!Hartford Symphony Orchestra Family Matinee Series3 p.m.Belding Theater
PilobolusSponsored by United Technologies Corporation8 p.m.Belding Theater
Magic Treehouse: The MusicalRobinson & Cole Family Series11 a.m. & 2 p.m. Mortensen Hall
The Daughter of the Regiment by Gaetano DonizettiThe Connecticut Opera8 p.m. Belding Theater
Anika Noni RoseHartford Symphony POPS!8 p.m. Mortensen Hall
The Daughter of the Regiment by Gaetano DonizettiConnecticut Opera2 p.m. Belding Theater
The Daughter of the Regiment by Gaetano DonizettiConnecticut Opera7:30 p.m. Belding Theater
Hot Chocolate SoulDoors open at 8 p.m. Autorino Great Hall
The Daughter of the Regiment by Gaetano DonizettiConnecticut Opera8 p.m. Belding Theater
All dates and times are subject to change. For a complete calendar, up-to-date information, or to purchase tickets, call The Bushnell Box Office at (860) 987-5900 or visit our website at:
P E R F O R M E R1broadway animal trainer and Connecticut native bill berloni answers our questions!
2bushnell celebrates longtime donors with Philanthropy Day
2How do you spell fun? b-U-S-H-N-e-l-l!
5bushnell Childrens Theatre and literature to life perfor-mances of Flight stimulate thought-provoking discussions
N e w s a n d I n f o r m a t i o n f r o m T h e b u s h n e l l
Performer is sponsored by
Q: You originally studied to be an actor how did you get into professional animal training?
A: When I graduated from berlin High School, I enrolled at Central Connecticut State Universitys Theater Department. In the meantime, I wanted to observe professional actors. So I applied to be a technical apprentice at the goodspeed Opera House building sets. I was accepted in the summer of 1975. In the summer of 1976 I was asked back. That year they were doing the original production of Annie. They needed a trained dog. So was I offered my Actors equity card and a part in one of the shows IF I would find and train a dog for no money. looking to be economical, I went to a shelter to adopt one because I had been told there were cheap dogs there. I found the original Sandy for seven dollars and trained him like I had my dogs growing up. In December of 1976, mike Nichols office called saying they were producing the play for broadway and asked if I would be interested. Annie opened on broadway in 1977 and I became a professional animal trainer overnight.
Q: Youve trained animals for tons of Broadway, Off-Broadway and regional theater shows, as well as television and movies any favorite experiences stand out?
A: every experience stands out. The gift to meet wonderful pets and genius people is unparalleled. Whether it is talking with Julia Roberts in our trailer on the set of Charlie Wilsons War about her six rescue dogs, or going to family functions with Sarah Jessica Parkers family for the last 30 years since she was Annie on broadway, or helping bernadette Peters wrangle pit bulls at her annual charity event bROADWAY bARKS, I have had the privilege of meeting some of the most wonderful people. And each day the animals teach me about courage, loyalty and forgiveness.
Q: Tell us about your new book, Broadway Tails. Why did you decide to write it?
Q&A with Legally Blonde The Musical animal trainer and Connecticut native, Bill Berloni
onnecticut native Bill Berloni is a professional animal trainer who has trained rescue animals for many Broadway, Off-Broadway and regional theater shows, as well as television and movies, including productions of Annie, Camelot, The Wizard of Oz, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, The
Lieutenant of Inishmore and many more. He trained the dogs for both the Broadway and national tour productions of Legally Blonde the Musical, which ran at The Bushnell December 9-14 as part of The Hartford Financial Services Group Broadway Series.
Legally Blonde The Musical animal trainer and Connecticut native bill berloni answers our questions!
CA: Over the years, I have done lots of publicity for the
shows I was working on. but I was never able to tell the whole story. After the little girl who played Annie in the 20th Anniversary of Annie was fired, I went to bed very sad this child was going to miss the dog she had worked so hard with. I had a dream that night of a book called BROADWAY TAILS, with my original Sandys face on it. The book was to tell the real stories of what happens backstage with animals. like all good ideas, it stayed in my head for 10 years. Then after CbS aired a piece about me and Legally Blonde The Musical on CbS Sunday morning, an editor at globe Pequot Press right here in guilford, Connecticut called and asked if I would be interested in writing a book about my experiences. but instead of the dirt, I decided to write about the rescue aspect and the craziness the animals overcome to succeed. And 20% of my royalties go to the Sandy Fund at the Humane Society of New York.
Q: Tell us about the dogs we will see when Legally Blonde The Musical comes to The Bushnell, Frankie (the Chihuahua who plays Bruiser) and China (the Bulldog who plays Rufus).
A. There are not just two dogs, but four dogs. everybody has an understudy. Frankie the Chihuahua was found as a stray in meriden in the spring. He was taken in by a rescue group that brought him to the same vet I use for my animals. Dr. Robert Olson, of Pieper Olson Veterinary Hospital in middletown has been treating and helping me rescue animals for the last 20 years. I met Frankie, and while he was young, he was darned cute and friendly. His understudy, Roxie, was a stray in rural louisiana. We saw her photo on Petfinder.com and the group drove her all the way up to meet us. The same group had a bulldog named China they had rescued from a puppy mill situation. We met her and she was perfect. Her understudy, Nellie, is from the Humane Society of New York where I work.
being born and raised in Connecticut, The bushnell has always been the flagship for broadway touring shows. When the very first tour of Annie came to Hartford in 1979, I had an idea that Sandy should return to Connecticut a star in the theater that was close to the shelter where he was rescued. Not only did he open the tour, but governor ella grasso proclaimed it Sandy Day in the State of Connecticut in honor of homeless animals. So Frankie and China have some big collars to fill when they hit the stage in Legally Blonde The Musical.
o you know what Porphyry is? Its a very hard rock, anciently quarried in
egypt, having a dark, purplish-red groundmass containing small crystals of feldspar.
Now, if you were on a stage, under hot lights, with a crowd watching you, could you spell it?
The winning team of the second annual Hartford education Foundation Community Spelling bee did. The greater Hartford Classical magnet gladiators was the last team standing at the bee, which took place at The learning Corridor on October 24 as a fundraiser for the Foundations Teacher grant Program. And while the members of The bushnells team The bushnell bumbles didnt win, they had a great time.
The Spelling bee was great! It was amazing how many different groups, from all around Hartford, came together in support of the event, said bushnell Annual Fund Director and bushnell bumbles team member Stephanie mcmullon.
Prizes were awarded to the best Spelling Team, best Costumes, and most Team Spirit. There were 36 teams divided into six swarms from organizations and schools in the greater Hartford area. John motley of motleybeup Associates served as mC and King of the Hive.
The bushnell was pleased to support a program that will directly impact the students in the Hartford schools by providing resources for programs and activities, said education and Promenade gallery manager and bumbles team captain brenda lopez said.
bushnell Facilities Sales and Services Senior manager and bumbles team member Cathy Stephens loved seeing so many costumes. It was great fun, she said. There were participants of all ages.
Pat Salner of the Hartford education Foundation co-chaired the bee, and credits all