June 5, 2019

Jac Bernhard ’16 Gives a “Screamo Version of a Robert Frost Poem” on Late Night with Seth Meyers

Robert Frost’s poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” is rather angst-y as it is. Wait till you hear it put to music by an emo band. Or, at least, a fictional emo band.

Such was the acting role for Jac Bernhard ’16. And he got to play the part of the band’s guitarist on none other than Late Night with Seth Meyers.

As Meyers announced, the 1923 poem is now in the public domain and open to interpretation. “We can use it; we can do whatever we want with it, legally,” he said. “So we decided to let a high school screamo band from 2003 cover the poem. Please welcome, from Piscataway, New Jersey, Mary’s Morning Deathbed!”

In an email to Nicholas Petron, M.A. ’70, professor and chair of the Department of Theatre, Bernhard wrote that he “spent a wild day at 30 Rock singing all of the praises and lessons I learned from you and Adelphi to the younger actors [who were in] a fictional emo band on Seth Meyers. “

He later said, “I grew up watching 1970s-1990s late-night comedy and Saturday Night Live. I really hoped I could get this gig and it was one of my favorite experiences.”

Bernhard and Mary’s Morning Deathbed had a photo op with the Late Night house band and Meyers (Bernhard is front and center, wearing a plaid shirt and green-soled boots).

Prior to the appearance, Bernhard had been at Adelphi to participate in 12,000 Voices, a national campaign inviting 1,000 theaters across the country to perform an all-female reading of Twelve Angry Men, since women did not serve on juries when the teleplay was written in 1954. “Adelphi elected to perform a gender-inclusive production of the teleplay,” said Margaret Lally ’82, associate professor of theater, who directed the play. “Jac, who is openly trans, played Juror 3.”

“The fact that I happen to be transgender in the industry has been mostly celebrated and supported so far and has allowed me to audition for and work on a wide variety of projects,” Bernhard said. “I think it has worked out because I try to be educational and transparent about it with others. Not everyone is comfortable with doing that and that’s cool, but for me it has worked.”

Prior to the Seth Meyers gig, Bernhard played one of the leads for two seasons of the new-media series In the Vault and did voice acting in the video game Red Dead Redemption II.

Bernhard was recently at the Sundance festival promoting AdamThe feature, directed by Rhys Ernst, a producer and director for Amazon’s Transparent, will be in theaters this summer.


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