Bill Bingham

All About Bill

Bill, The Early Years:

I was born sometime during the last half of the 20th century. I was too young to remember exactly when, but it wasn't all that long ago.

 

I was raised on the shores of the Puget Sound and the surrounding mountain slopes of the Pacific Northwest.  People can laugh about the rainy Washington weather, but they always admire the luxurious coats of moss growing on our north sides. 

 

Education:

 

Bachelor’s -- University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, WA;

                      Theater, Education; minors in  

                      Art & English.

Interestingly, I enrolled at UPS immediately after Playboy Magazine rated it the #2 partying college in the country.  It was just a coincidence.  Really. 

Master’s – Wayne State University, Detroit, MI;

                  Theater/Non-Profit Arts Management

I attended classes at Wayne State University, but my real education resulted from being an middle-class, spoiled, entitled white kid, who was plunked down in one of America’s most desolate slum neighborhoods.

 

Factoids:

  • ŸŸDuring College and sometimes afterward, I worked in a pickle factory for five years.  We also made salad dressings and mayonnaise, potato chips and other snack foods along with a variety of canned foods, such as chili, beef stew, chicken and noodles.  I would recommend all of the products we made, except the canned tamales, which were wrapped in paper and swimming in a tomato soup-like sauce. 

 

  • I have a hazy memory of running away to join a traveling carnival & freak show.  I don’t remember much, but I can still drive nails into my nose, dance barefoot on broken glass, do a little ventriloquism, and eat glass light bulbs.  I call that period “my misspent youth.”

 

  • During my time at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, I was entranced by musician who played the musical saw.  She gave me some basic instruction, and, later, when I moved to Los Angeles, I studied with David Weiss, who played first oboe with the LA Philharmonic. He was also one of the world’s finest saw players.  Since then, I’ve performed in all kinds of venues in the US, and several foreign countries.  I was also part of the once popular comedy and music trio, Chopping Block, and sat in regularly with a number of other LA groups.  It’s astonishing how something as peculiar as playing the musical saw can open up entire worlds.

  • I’ve never been much of a sportsman, but when a beautiful friend, who’d been a series regular on a long-running TV show, invited me to go skydiving, I couldn’t decline.  I enjoyed it, once I learned not to throw up up as I fell through the sky, and I continued for sometime.  It’s an easy sport; gravity does most of the work -- and when the whole earth is your target, you always hit a bull’s eye.