ONSTAGE & BACKSTAGE: Seth Is a "Bunhead" Plus Lisa Lampanelli and Andrea McArdle

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21 Jan 2013

Seth Rudetsky
Seth Rudetsky

A week in the life of actor, radio and TV host, music director and writer Seth Rudetsky.


I am leaving Broadway for television! I put that there because I think journalism courses tell you to have a first sentence to “hook” the reader. Now let me refine: I’m not actually on Broadway right now, so to claim I’m “leaving” it is not possible. And the “television” I’m so-called “leaving Broadway” for is actually only one (1) episode. So, the opening sentence really should read, “I’m doing two scenes on a dramedy” but I thought I’d lose readers from the blandness.

Here’s the story: Around two weeks ago, my agent called me (I’m giving you a moment to let the shock wear off just as I needed to) and asked me if I’d be interested in doing an episode of "Bunheads." I told him Y to the E to the S! He didn’t know many details but asked me if I’d keep the third week of January free and that he’d know specific dates soon. I was very excited and immediately texted Sutton (Foster), who wrote that Amy Sherman Palladino (who created "Bunheads" and "Gilmore Girls") is a fan of mine and Sutton told her to write me into the show! Yay! I found out a few days ago that I have to be in LA to film on Jan. 28 and 29, and they’d like me to do the script read-thru today (Monday) while on the phone. So exciting! I got the cast list on Friday, and my friends Tim Cross and Anika Larsen were visiting. I looked down the list of people on the show and saw that my character’s name is “Seth Rudetsky." Wow! The same “character” I played on "Smash." I’m now officially a “crossover character." Not since Phoebe’s twin on "Friends" appeared on "Mad About You." Of course, the more I looked at the cast list, the more I noticed how far on the bottom I was. Tim first thought that perhaps it was in alphabetical order, but then we realized it wasn’t. I finally said, “Maybe the list of characters is in order of the size of the part,” hoping to be contradicted. I gave a brave smile, and waited for someone to say, “No way! I’m sure you have a lot of lines!” But instead, Anika looked closer at the cast list and said, “You may be right. The only other character listed underneath your name is 'Disgruntled Dancer.'" Well…I think that sounds like an enormous part. Probably Amy spent so many hours writing lines for "Disgruntled Dancer" that she didn’t have enough time to come up with a character name. Anyhoo, I’m very excited to film anything with Sutton! The last time we worked together was on They’re Playing Our Song. Yes, we got to kiss, but it was completely closed mouth. This time I’m taking it up a notch to make-out session. You know what they say: What happens on television, stays on television. If you missed our performance, here’s a fun video of us.

Now, why were people over at my house on Friday, you ask (telepathically)? Because I’m obsessed with a game Anika Larsen showed me last year. It’s like Celebrity, but it’s called Salad Bowl, and first you choose a letter from the alphabet. Then everyone has to write down seven things that start with that letter: celebrity names, objects, song titles, song lyrics, etc. Anika always gives the example of the letter O; it could be Obama, Onion Quiche, “Oh, Say can you See," etc. There are two teams, and during the first round you have to give clues to make your team guess what you pulled out of the hat. In the second round, everything is put back and now you can only give a one-word clue. Just one word! So hard! Everything is put back again, and this time you have to act out your clues like Charades. Anyhoo, I love this game so much that I’m starting a series on SethTV.com where I film game nights at my house! So, on Friday I had a bunch of friends come over and we filmed everything. I will update 'ya when the show’s been edited and put up.

Speaking of SethTV, I just added the documentary called "Zbornik Developing" by Aaron Mark. Kristine and I first met working at Rose's Turn in the Village back in the early 90’s. If you got to see Into the Woods last summer in Central Park, you saw her fabulous performance as Jack’s Mother. This documentary is about the preparation and performance of a new act she did a few years. It is so funny yet moving. And, it’s so easy to identify with her anxiety of putting up a new project for the first time. Watch the trailer here. Watch the whole documentary at www.SethTV.com.


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