As of press time, those expected to take in Rudetsky’s musings on growing up a gay belting fan include Audra McDonald, Peter Gallagher, Christine Ebersole, Donna McKechnie, Thommie Walsh, Priscilla Lopez, Kelly Bishop, Donna Drake, David Drake, Christiane Noll, Julia Murney and Peter Friedman.
In his self-penned, one-man show directed by Peter Flynn, Rudetsky rhapsodizes about the talents of high belters Buckley and LuPone and the late Laurie Beechman while leading a discussion of the difference between a woman's "head" and "chest" voice. The comedic actor also recalls growing up in North Woodmere, Long Island, where he was praised for his musical gifts but ridiculed for being gay. Rudetsky, however, had the last laugh, working his way to pianist and musical director for several Broadway shows and comedy writer for "The Rosie O'Donnell Show."
After an acclaimed run at the Ars Nova Theater, Rhapsody in Seth began previews at the Actors Playhouse Feb. 28 prior to its official opening on March 11, which will benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. Performances are Thursday and Fridays at 10 PM and Saturdays at 2 PM.
Rudetsky, who is also the creator and host of the weekly BC/EFA fundraiser Seth's Broadway Chatterbox, has served as a pit pianist and/or conductor for such Broadway shows as 42nd Street, The Full Monty, The Phantom of the Opera, Mamma Mia! and The Producers. He also conceived the idea for the recent all-star Funny Girl concert to benefit the Actors' Fund of America as well as the Dreamgirls anniversary concert, which was recorded live by Nonesuch Records. Rudetsky was a member of the comedy writing team for "The Rosie O'Donnell Show" for two years, and his awards include the Duplex's Stars of Tomorrow, the Backstage Bistro and the Funniest Gay Male in New York. Rhapsody in Seth was recently nominated for a GLAAD Media Award in the Outstanding New York Theatre: Off Off Broadway category.
The Actors Playhouse is located in New York City at 100 Seventh Ave., between Bleecker and West 4th Streets. Tickets for Rhapsody in Seth are priced at $25 and are available by calling Telecharge at (212) 239-6200 or (800) 722-4990. Visit www.rhapsodyinseth.com for more information.