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  • Writer's pictureJim Bessman

It will be 'Sandemonium' when Sandra Bernhard returns to Joe's Pub next week

Sandra Bernhard visits Wendy Williams

Fast approaching her annual end-of-the-year week-long run (Dec. 26-31) at Joe’s Pub, Sandra Bernhard says she’s never been busier.

She’s got a pair of potential television projects under consideration, the first based on Arts & Crafts, a musical that she and cabaret/performance artist Justin Vivian Bond wrote and originated at Joe’s Pub in 2011, the second, 351 N. Canon, concerning her first years in Los Angeles as a manicurist and performer, with “all the fun, hijinx and emotion of being 19-years-old in L.A.,” Bernhard says.

And she’s just back from there, having reprised her pioneering TV role as Nancy Bartlett (one of the first openly lesbian recurring characters on American television) in next year’s Roseanne sitcom reboot.

“I came by the set and Roseanne took me aside and said they added an additional episode and I was in it—and it’s great! Everybody’s in top form.”

Meanwhile, Bernhard’s weekday SiriusXM Satellite Radio show Sandyland is still going strong, and now comes her new live show, Sandemonium, at Joe’s Pub.

“When you’re tired of dealing with the pandemonium, come and have a release with Sandemonium!” beckons Bernhard.

“As always, the new show touches on everything that’s happened over the past year--the people I’ve bumped into, the top news stories, but without beating everyone over the head about it: I always personalize everything and make it all funny.”

And she always intersperses her comic monologues with songs, backed, as ever, by her Sandyland Squad Band directed by her longtime pianist/collaborator Mitch Kaplan.

Putting it all together takes all year, Bernhard says.

“I keep notes on everything, write the pieces and choose the songs after considering as many as 30,” she says. “We cover a wide swath in making people laugh and feel and run and hide and celebrate, and on Tuesday—opening night—we’ll throw it all against the wall, then cut some stuff out and add new things and improvise until the late show on New Year’s Eve.”

So far 2018 is shaping up to be another busy year for Bernhard, who returns to London and two nights at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in February. Meanwhile, her website has been thoroughly upgraded.



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