How did you first get involved in the arts?
I got involved in the performing arts at a very young age! My cousins owned a prestigious dancing studio where I grew up (which was Milford, Massachusetts!). They were former show dancers, and I learned how to dance from them! I also loved to draw as a child and was encouraged to so do. I came to Connecticut in 1977 to attend University of Bridgeport, where I studied graphic design and theatre!
What is your latest project?
My latest project is "GLITZ! The Little Miss Christmas Pageant Musical," a brand new musical comedy that mashes up Toddlers and Tiaras with A Christmas Carol. It's very funny and heartwarming at the same time. The show features professional actors and ten aspiring girls who play the contestants! Four of the girls are from right here in Milford. The show is produced by my new company, Pantochino Productions, which I run with my partner, and long-time Milford resident Jimmy Johansmeyer. Jimmy is not only in the show, but he also designs the amazing glitz costumes.
What advice do you wish you'd received when you first got started?
Everyone told me a career in the theatre would not be easy...And I would pass on this advice to anyone who has this desire. It's lots of fun, but plenty of hard work and commitment. I've been blessed to be acting, writing and directing for many years. It's very rewarding in so many ways.
Who are some local artists people should check out?
The Greater New Haven area is rich in the arts. There are so many theatre and dance companies, galleries and venues producing top quality work. Selfishly, I hope everyone comes to see what we are doing here at Pantochino first and foremost!!