Royal Gazette: Connie Dey: actor with a love of history

Royal Gazette: Connie Dey: actor with a love of history

A devoted actor and mainstay of the Bermuda National Trust brought her love of St George’s history to life in her walking tours of the Old Town.

Connie Dey joined the Bermuda Musical and Dramatic Society in 1959 and introduced cultural tourism to the trust not long after its inception in 1970.

Ms Dey’s awards included recognition in the 2013 VIP Excellence Awards for her service to the island’s hospitality industry and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Bermuda Arts Council in 2010.

However, theatre was her first love and she was familiar to Bermudians of all ages for her roles in stage productions and radio ads.

Ms Dey was a lifetime member of the BMDS and a regular in plays and Christmas pantomimes.

Carol Birch, a playwright and director with the BMDS, said she was “always an amazing person and someone I looked up to”.

“Many years ago, it was fashion shows that many of us remember fondly. Her heart also lay in the theatre and she graced those boards, many, many times for BMDS.”

Ms Birch added that she “loved working with Connie — she was always such a joy to be around”.

“Every year for panto, I was thrilled when she came to auditions, as I knew whatever part I gave her, she would make it her own.

“In later years, she asked me only to give her cameo parts, but no matter how small the role, and especially as the tourist guide in The Firebird, she had everyone rolling in the aisles at her comic antics.”

Ms Dey called herself a “compulsive joiner and volunteer” in an interview with The Royal Gazette in a 2010. “The bottom line is, if the audience leaves the theatre happy, then I’m happy.”

Born in Melrose, Massachusetts, just outside Boston, Ms Dey landed a job as a commercial copy writer at a Boston radio station, WORL.

She met her late husband, Joseph Dey, another theatre lover, while holidaying on the classic liner Queen of Bermuda, which took the couple to Bermuda.

Her husband served as housing officer at Kindley Air Force Base and the couple had two sons, Russell and David.

Ms Dey moved to the island in 1956 and joined the cast of the Kindley Air Theatre, which broadcast live theatre.

She was approached by the Department of Tourism for preparations to commemorate the 350th anniversary of Bermuda’s colonisation.

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September 18, 2023 News