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Sandra Bernhard
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Comedienne Sandra Bernhard

Live at the Improv Palm Beach


The outrageously funny comedienne Sandra Bernhard is performing live at the Improv Palm Beach from October 21-24. The Improv is located at 550 S. Rosemary Ave. Suite 250 West Palm Beach, FL 33401.


Sandra talked with Mark's List about her upcoming show at the Improv Palm Beach & her incredible career.


Q. So you’re coming down to the Improv in Palm Beach this weekend.  What can we expect during the show?

A. Yes. There is going to be some old material mixed with some new stuff. In a venue like this it’s different than some of the bigger places.  It’s great to just show up and walk on stage.  I have a tendency when I do comedy to have a jumping off place and then improvise for 45 minutes. 


Q.  That must be such an experience to be up there and draw from your own experience to continuously bring the laughs for such a long period of time.  Do you ever get nervous, or is it almost second nature to you? 

A. Yeah. If you’ve been performing as long as I have in every possible venue you don’t really get nervous per se.  I jot down ideas and just kind of play off of that.


Q.  Is this your first time performing at the Improv in Palm Beach?

A.  Yeah it will be.  I heard it’s nice and very accessible for people especially in these economic times.  People can come out and get tickets and come see me doing my thing. I’ve done bigger shows in Miami where I bring my band and do something more theatrical.  With some of these smaller markets it’s a lot easier for people. 


Q. You’ve been doing this for almost 30 years.  How have things changed over each decade?  Have you noticed a change in your audience or the types of topics that you talk about during the show?

A.  Yes and no.  I think that people are always interested in what’s going on in my life and my take on pop culture and politics and my own personal evolution.  Obviously the biggest change has happened with the Internet.  Now I can reach out daily.  I Twitter a lot and I have a Facebook.  I don’t get too sucked into the vortex of the Internet, but I absolutely like to use it as a positive reflection of what I’m thinking about day to day. It’s a nice outlet to reach out to people. 


Q. In your career you’ve been on shows such as “Roseanne” and “Late Night with David Letterman.” What do you think has been the highlight of your career, or is that yet to come?

A. I think it’s a culmination of everything. It’s not really one thing.  It’s a long road and you’re constantly in the process of what you’re doing or doing next.  I think my career in comedy has been the most rewarding because I’m continuously able to be creative and say the things I want to say. 


Q. So what are some of the new projects you are working on?

A. I just did an indie film and I’m shooting a new one in the spring.  I have a few television projects that I wrote and will be presenting to different people.  I also spent the summer writing a musical and we will be meeting with actors and producers in January to get things going with that. I’m always doing the one-woman shows, so it will be great to get something out there where I’m performing with other actors. 


Q. Is your daughter interested in doing any comedic work or following in your footsteps? What does she think about you as a performer?

A.  No not at all [lol].  She loves that I’m a performer and she’s very interested in the world and politics.  She’s just a very eclectic person. 


Q.  There’s been a lot of stuff going on within the gay community with adoption, marriage and bullying.  What do you think about all of that?

A.  I think we’re at a real crossroad within our culture.  I think it’s really shaken up the hornet’s nest within this country.  People have just put it in the back of their minds and now it’s really staring at them in the face.  I think it’s scaring a lot of people.  I think once we get through this we will be at another level culturally and things will shift a lot over the next couple of years. 


Q. Thank you for taking the time to talk with Mark’s List.

A. You’re welcome.  I’m looking forward to being in Palm Beach!


About Sandra Bernhard

Since she first stepped on stage at the Comedy Store in the ‘70s, Sandra Bernhard has been challenging fans and critics with her outrageous humor, keen satire and rollicking stage shows. “Give the dame her due,” writes the New York Times, “It's invigorating to be in the presence of a true original.”

Bernhard, who writes and develops all of her own material, has produced numerous one-woman shows over the years, among them: Without You I’m Nothing—which was released as a feature film—Excuses for Bad Behavior, Giving ‘Til It Hurts, Hero Worship, the Love Machine, and Everything Bad and Beautiful, which ran for two months off-Broadway, before Bernhard toured with it, making numerous stops across the U.S. and in Europe. “A performer of stunning originality. Funny but foxy, super smart and slightly mad!” proclaimed WCBS. “Bernhard is a very funny woman by nature, a rocker by sheer determination and an actress you've seen in eclectic offerings,” says the Washington Post.

Bernhard’s one-woman Broadway show, “I’m Still Here … Damn It!,” was hailed by the New York Times as “an angst driven, foul-mouthed poison-laced joy ride that banks and careens frenetically through the worlds of fashion, celebrity, rock, and religion. In her own voice, unfiltered, [Bernhard] is a living, breathing bonfire.” The show, which initially ran for five months off Broadway, went on to play sold-out runs in Boston and San Francisco, and was filmed for an HBO special.

Bernhard first earned film accolades in 1983 when she appeared in Martin Scorsese’s “The King of Comedy.” Other film work includes “Inside Monkey Zetterland,” “Track 29,” “Hudson Hawk,” “Dinner Rush,” and “Dare.” And she is about to begin filming on two new projects.

From 1991-1996, Bernhard portrayed Nancy Bartlett on “Roseanne,” and she has had guest starring or recurring roles on numerous other shows, among them; “Ally McBeal,” “The Larry Sanders Show,” “The Sopranos,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “The L Word,” “Will & Grace,” and “The New Adventures of Old Christine.” She has appeared numerous times on “Late Night with David Letterman,” and has been a guest on “The Tonight Show,” “The View,” “The Joy Behar Show,” “The Jimmy Kimmel Show,” “The Rachel Maddow Show,” and Showtime’s “The Green Room,” among others. She has appeared regularly on the Howard Stern show since the ‘80s. And was the host of “Sandra After Dark,” for HBO, and “Reel Wild Cinema.”

In addition to her original songs, Bernhard performs covers from Led Zeppelin to Laura Nyro; Burt Bachrach to Britney Spears. “One moment, her voice is lulling you into a wistful sigh; the next, she's knocking you back several rows with it,” proclaimed the SF Weekly. Her albums include: “I’m Your Woman,” and most recently she collaborated on the world music album “Whatever it Takes,” featuring African musicians such as Papa Wemba and TK. She has also sung with or opened for various musical acts, including: The Pretenders, Cyndi Lauper, and the Scissor Sisters. She participated in the “Stormy Weather Benefit '98,” organized by Don Henley, which also featured Stevie Nicks and Joni Mitchell and “The Elton John Tribute for Broadway Cares.” Bernhard has also lent her talents to benefits for organizations including: The Ali Forney Center for LGBT Homeless Youth, and Broadway Cares Equity Fights AIDS.

Bernhard has written three books: Confessions of a Pretty Lady (Harper&Row, 1988), Love, Love and Love (HarperCollins, 1994), and May I Kiss You on the Lips, Miss Sandra? (William Morrow, 1998). And she is currently at work on her fourth collection. Her work has also been published in numerous magazines, including, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Conde Nast Traveler, Rolling Stone, Interview, and Spy.


About Improv Palm Beach


The best in comedy comes to Improv in Palm Beach. The Improv is the premier club in Palm Beach for local and national comedians to show off their skills and make people laugh. Stop in to laugh and watch the Stars come out. Located in the heart of Palm Beach, Florida's most hip entertainment destination, the Improv offers a true comedy nightclub experience. You really can see tomorrow's superstars of comedy today at The World Famous Improv. The Improv Comedy Club proudly features the nation's hottest stand up comics. Founded by Budd Friedman in the mid 60's in New York City, The Improv became a unique venue where up and coming comics could perfect their craft. Today, the Improv continues to feature the hottest stand up comics. Our roster has included such stars as Tim Allen, Robin Williams, Steve Martin, Jerry Seinfeld, Garry Shandling, Roseanne, Steven Wright, Dennis Miller, Rodney Dangerfield, Lilly Tomlin, Ellen Degeneres, Drew Carey and Jim Carey.