Peter Bertini received an MFA in modern dance from the University of the Arts in 1979 after completing a BS in dance from S.U.N.Y. Brockport, earning the Rose L. Strasser Award for Academic Performance, and performing for Tony Award winning Garth Fagan 1974 to 1975. He choreographed and performed his own work from 1985 to 1991, for industrials in Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Paris, Budapest, and Sydney - which received an International Exhibitors Association Competition award. His choreography appeared on a Bob Hope TV special, and he performed as a dancer on PBS with members of the Philadelphia Orchestra. He has notated more than 250 modern, jazz, and Brazilian dance studies in Labanotation, taught at Temple University, and was one of Philadelphia Magazine’s, “77 people to watch in 77.”
As a musician, he was an original ten year member of award winning Spoken Hand Percussion Orchestra, nationally recognized for its collaboration with tabla master Zakir Hussain and hip-hop dance guru Rennie Harris. He is a past member of Samba Nosso, and Banda Bacana, and in 1999 became a founding member of Alô Brasil; for which he still performs lead vocal, dance, and percussion.
He was head of the Jazz Dance program at UArts for 14 years, and has been teaching since 1977. Peter Bertini is the 2008 recipient of the university’s Louise Beitzel Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Studied jazz dance and percussion with choreographer/percussionist JoJo Smith; Brazilian dance with Ligia Barreto (Roots of Brazil, Afro-Brazilian Dance Company); Ghanaian dance and drumming with Emerentia B. Tamakloe and Kwaku Ladzekpo; piano and modern dance - ten years.
Recordings: Alo Brasil; Samba Nosso; Spoken Hand Percussion Orchestra