Sandra Bernhard Biography

Comedian, Writer, Actress (1955–)
Sandra Bernhard is an actress and stand-up comedian best known for her role on 'Roseanne' and in Martin Scorsese's 'The King of Comedy.'


Sandra Bernhard was born on June 6, 1955, in Flint, Michigan. Her brash, satirical stand-up comedy routine landed her on The Richard Pryor Show in 1977. Bernhard played an obsessed fan in Martin Scorsese's King of Comedy (1983) and won the National Society of Film Critics Award for Best Supporting Actress. In the '90s she had a recurring role as an out lesbian on the hit sitcom Roseanne. Bernhard continues to perform, record albums and write.

Ruthless Reputation

Comedian and actress Sandra Bernhard was born on June 6, 1955, in Flint, Michigan. Raised in Arizona, Bernhard began to receive attention in the late 1970s for her brash, in-your-face stand-up comedy routines. Her ferocious attacks against political and celebrity figures have become something of a calling card, and she has amassed a loyal following thanks to successful shows and subsequent albums, including Excuses for Bad Behaviour, I'm Still Here... Damn It! and Hero Worship. These shows often include musical numbers and performances by guest musicians. 

Acting and Publishing Career

Bernhard has appeared in numerous films throughout her career, including The King of Comedy, Hudson Hawk and Dinner Rush. She also makes frequent television guest appearances, most notably on Roseanne and Will & Grace. In 2001, Bernhard briefly hosted her own talk show, The Sandra Bernhard Experience, for A&E television.

In 2006 Bernhard debuted her Off Broadway show Everything Bad & Beautiful, accompanied by a CD, which was praised by critics. The following year she created the show Plan B From Outer Space and toured through 2008.

In 2013 the actress had a guest stint on ABC's Switched at Birth, playing an art professor on the family drama.

Bernhard has written several books, including Confessions of a Pretty Lady and Love, Love and Love. Her writing has been published in The New Yorker, Vanity Fair and Rolling Stone, among others.

Personal Life

Bernhard is openly bisexual. She has a daughter, Cicely Yasin Bernhard, whom she gave birth to in 1998 and raises with her partner Sara Switzer.

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