Bill Berloni said the dog, who was in all the shows during its Broadway run from 2007 to 2008, died on March 11. Chico’s journey to become one of the most beloved pets on Broadway began when Berloni encountered him at the Associated Humane Society in Newark, N.J., according to an Instagram post on Berloni’s page.
“Chico had been severely abused and was actually slated for euthanasia. He ‘spoke’ to Bill that day, however, and despite everyone at the shelter telling him he was the absolute wrong choice, Bill took him…if nothing else to find him the perfect forever home,” the post read. “Destiny intervened at a press event for LEGALLY BLONDE when the show’s director, Jerry Mitchell, fell in love with our little chihuaha and declared ‘This is our Bruiser!’”
The Chihuahua went on to work with Broadway actors Laura Bell Bundy, Annaleigh Ashford and Christian Borle for a year. He became the first dog to open a Broadway show.
After “Legally Blonde – The Musical” ended, Chico toured in regional productions with Berloni before retiring two years ago.
The dog also appeared on the reality shows “The Search for the Next Elle Woods” on MTV and “From Wags To Riches With Bill Berloni” on Amazon.