Associate Professor of Theater
Fine Arts Building Rm. 209
Office: (856) 225-2872
Fax: (856) 225-6330
Paul Bernstein is a theater artist who merges his work as an actor-director- playwright, with a vision of physical theater that incorporates film, music, and dance. This broadened range of possibility and community greatly influences his view of composition for the stage, and Paul teaches with an eye on the future where highly independent theater students take part in shaping their own professional careers.
His plays and performance works have been produced extensively on both coasts of the United States. The Bay Area Playwright’s Festival featured three of his plays including the critically acclaimed Looking In The Dark For which moved to New York, directed by Robert Woodruff. Through Darkest Ohio was produced at The Public Theater in New York, directed by Ross Hindley who directed many of Paul’s plays produced while he was Playwright-in-Residence at HOME for Contemporary Theater in New York, including: Run of Houselit Yard, Breaking Stickmen, Among Wayward Lawns, Mean To N Is B-lay, Pale Green Kitchen Ruthie, Fast Chairs, and The Family Since Packing. When HOME became the theater now known as HERE, his play Assistance: Porter was produced by HERE Arts Center in NYC in 2004-2005.
During the 1990s, international theater became a central focus. Paul toured Iceland as an actor with The Mark Tapor Forum’s production of Rio Esmerelda, by Erin Cressida Wilson, (dir. Peter Brosius). He performed a month-long series of works at The Hong Kong Center for the Arts, and received 2nd Place in London’s Best New Play of the Year Award from Time Out Magazine for his direction of Erin Cressida Wilson’s Dakota’s Belly Wyoming, a play in which he was subsequently cast across from Kyra Sedgewick for its Off-Broadway production by the Manhattan Class Co. at the Nat Horne Theater(dir. Brian Mertes). His European credits include De Murker Uland produced at Theater d’Leifde, Tunnel To Bridge at deMelkweg Fontenzaal Theater, and his solo version of Vita Nuova Hrabal, produced by Art Universe (IUGTE) at the Bovec Art Center in Slovenia in 2008 and 2009.
While performing in Europe, Paul also served for six years on the faculty of the International Theater School (SNDO) in Amsterdam. His most pivotal European work during this period, a choreography entitled Guernica, was performed at the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. He followed this with a performance of an original solo work entitled LUMU in Budapest, at the Ludwig Museum of Modern Art, his actor/musician duet, Vita Nuova Hrabal was performed at L1 Dance Theater, and at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, where highlights of his work with theater and film were featured during the summer of 2013.
In September of 2013, Paul will be a guest artist at the Saginaw Film Festival, performing solo theater works in relation to three original films created in collaboration with filmic artist Robert A. Emmons Jr., each with Midwestern America in mind: AND NEVER CHANGE YOUR dEAD POINT OF VIEW, Other Distants, and Untitled, Untitled 518.
Paul will be continuing his collaboration with writer-director team Barbara Weichmann and Jeff Mousseau, appearing at HERE Arts Center as Hans Christian Anderson in the new musical The Snow Queen. Their previous new play, Aunt Leaf, enjoyed two productions at HERE before touring upstate New York in 2010. This play will be heading to Italy in June, 2014 with Paul as the featured performer.
Professor Bernstein has directed nine mainstage productions on the campus of Rutgers-Camden, each notable for exploring the integration of theater and film. He has published articles on new forms of acting, the influence of physical theater and dance, film technology in theater-making, and revised visions of composition for the stage. His article, “Merging Theater and Film”, is being published by Common Ground Publishing of Illinois in 2014.