Bernardo Saracino visited the bosque plenty of times while growing up in the South Valley.
The place is familiar.
It evokes fond memories.
When Saracino was filming an episode for the NBC series “Midnight, Texas” in the bosque, he became overwhelmed with emotions.
“Here I was filming in my hometown in an area I know very well,” he says. “And in the show, the bosque is part of the town called Midnight, Texas. It was surreal. My goal has always been to have a career in my home state.”
In the TV series, Saracino plays Chuy Strong. It is his first big network show.
“Midnight, Texas,” which premieres on Monday, July 24, is based on the book series of the same name by Charlaine Harris, who wrote “The Southern Vampire Mysteries,” which the HBO series “True Blood” was based on.
In “Midnight,” the town is a sanctuary where psychics, witches, vampires and other mystical creatures can co-exist.
What drew Saracino to the part of Chuy Strong is that he has a funny sense of humor.
“The fact that the character is a Latin male is great,” he says. “A lot of auditions I go on, I’m always auditioning for a gang member or drug user. This character is nothing like that. He’s in a relationship, and he is in love. He’s very emotional and feels a lot of things.”
Saracino got the acting bug when he began doing community theater in elementary school.
His mother put him in painting, sports and theater.
“Theater is the one thing that stuck,” he says. “I was in ‘Young Macbeth’ at the KiMo (Theatre) and I’ve never looked back.
Saracino, who splits time between Los Angeles and Albuquerque, went to Rio Grande High School.
He and his brother lived with his grandparents after he lost his mother and sister.
Saracino credits his grandparents for instilling in him the values of hard work and dedication.
And that’s what he loves about being part of “Midnight, Texas.”
“When you watch the show, you realize that all the characters build an extended family,” he says.
The TV series has a lot of buzz surrounding it, and the cast, including Saracino, is at San Diego Comic Con this weekend.
“I just found out I was going,” Saracino says. “I’m looking forward to seeing how the fans enjoy the show.”
You can follow his adventures at San Diego Comic Con on Twitter @heysaracino or on Instagram @bernardosaracino.