How to Buy a Blanket Made By Two-Time Tony Winner Sutton Foster

Seth Rudetsky   How to Buy a Blanket Made By Two-Time Tony Winner Sutton Foster
This week in the life of Seth Rudetsky, Audra McDonald shares audience horror stories, Sutton Foster talks Younger and her new pet project, and more.
Sutton Foster
Sutton Foster Monica Simoes

Hello from…you guessed it…the porch of the Anchor Inn in Provincetown! This is my last trip this summer because next week I fly to London to do a cruise. Farewell, summer! But before I leave, I have two shows with Stephanie J. Block at the Art House so, if you’re on the Cape, come by! Here’s Stephanie in a high belting Obsessed!:

Anyhoo, yesterday I went to Cotuit on Cape Cod to do a matinée show with Audra McDonald. Audra not only consistently sounds great, she’s always hilarious. I was asking her about inappropriate audience comments because I had recently been speaking to a husband and wife pair who are both actors. They were recognized by a fan who said, “I saw you in Chicago!” Another woman nearby looked askance, and the couple explained that they had recently been touring in a musical that played the city of Chicago. The other woman looked at the wife and said “Oh! I knew it couldn’t be Chicago the musical because I can’t imagine you looking sexy!” Wonderful honesty.

Seth with Audra McDonald and Mark Cortale
Seth with Audra McDonald and Mark Cortale Photo by Brian Johnston

Well, Audra told us that she recently did a concert in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, with a very wealthy audience. After the show, a woman approached her. The woman was in her 70s but she (and her doctors) had done their best to make her look younger. She told Audra how great her performance was and then told her that she had recently had a procedure done. It was a new type of plastic surgery and, she added, from looking at Audra’s appearance onstage, she thought Audra would want to know about it. And have the procedure done.

Audra wouldn’t tell us what surgery she recommended because she didn’t want the audience staring at that particular body part throughout the rest of our show, but everyone thought the chutzpah was hilarious. The woman did come back to Audra 15 minutes later and ask “I didn’t offend you, did I?” #TooLittleTooLate

Audra also told us about doing A Raisin In The Sun and the night that everyone in the audience started making random “ooh” and “AH!’ screams: Throughout Act 1, everyone onstage kept seeing random sections of the audience suddenly stand up. Finally, the cast found out the uproar was because of a rodent running around the theatre!!! When intermission came, the staff opened all the doors to the street so he/she could run outside and visit another hit show. Well, Act 2 began and soon the screaming/popping up/sitting on top of their seats began again. Finally, it got to a moment in Act 2 that always produced an extreme audience emotional response. (The character of Walter has lost all the money that was going to save the family and he storms out of the room, devastated.) Right after, Beneatha has a monologue that (unfortunately) ended with “That is not a man. That is nothing but a toothless rat.” Well, this time the response it produced from the audience was not emotional devastation but theater-wide hysterical laughter. Audra said she wanted to say at that point, “Ok, everyone. We tried. Show’s over. Come back tomorrow at 8 and it’ll be better.”

Speaking of Audra, here’s a deconstruction I did featuring her:

Sutton Foster, Juli Wesley, James Wesley, Seth Rudetsky
Sutton Foster, Juli Wesley, James Wesley, Seth Rudetsky

I had Sutton Foster on Seth Speaks, my SiriusXM talk show, and it was so great to see her! Sutton feels she’s done so much theatre that, for years, she’s been very comfortable walking into any rehearsal…be it musical or play. And, now after Bunheads and years of Younger she finally feels the same about walking onto a TV set. That was great to hear! I’m happy that all it will take for me to be comfortable is being on two different series. In the starring role. Phew! I thought it would it be difficult.

Anyhoo, I was in the final episode of Bunheads with her and remember her passing the time between takes, knitting in the corner. Sutton said that there’s so much waiting on a TV set, it’s really important to have something positive to pass the time with. She’s now combining her creativity with charity. Sutton’s going to crochet blankets and sell them for charity to help cover the costs of adopting children (because she adopted and knows how expensive it was). To see some of her crocheting, get thee to her Instagram @SuttonLenore.

Miss Coco Peru
Miss Coco Peru Greg Bailey

Speaking of social media, James and I saw Miss Coco Peru’s wonderful show up here in Provincetown. The show is themed around aging and Coco (real name Clinton Leupp) was inspired to write it because a fan emailed to say they worked for a doctor and was “sure the doctor would give a deep discount on facial fillers.” First, Miss Coco explained to us what it means when someone says they are “sure”—it means they aren’t sure. Because, Miss Coco explained, if they were sure, they would just offer the discount.

Then Miss Coco shared a tweet where a fan begged RuPaul to put Miss Coco on RuPaul’s Drag Race because “she’s old.” Yep. Not since Jackson Hole has someone’s opinion not been needed. The full tweet was actually “Please put Miss Coco on Drag Race because she’s old…and may pass soon.” Miss Coco’s shows are always so unique and so well-written and acted. Clinton starred as Miss Coco alongside my friends Jack Plotnick (as Evie Harris) and Jeffrey Roberson (as Varla Jean Merman) in the hilarious film Girls Will Be Girls by Richard Day. You must watch it! Here’s a highlight reel of hilarity.

OK, before I go, I must share my newest deconstruction which features “The Schuyler Sisters” from Hamilton. It’s always exciting to me when people involved in what I’m deconstructing take the time to watch and comment. Here’s Lin-Manuel Miranda’s post. So kind!

Watch the deconstruction below and peace out!

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