SoCal's Laguna Playhouse Welcomes RITA RUDNER: ACT 3, Now thru 8/26

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SoCal's Laguna Playhouse Welcomes RITA RUDNER: ACT 3, Now thru 8/26

The Laguna Playhouse welcomes back Rita Rudner, one of the country's top comediennes, for an exclusive three-day stand-up engagement, aptly titled Rita Rudner: Act 3, tonight, August 24 – Sunday, August 26, 2012. Performance times are 7 p.m. each evening.

The engagement will also feature the light and playful musical sounds of Orange County's own singing sensation Sasha Evans. The new and exciting artistic addition to the engagement was conceived by Rudner and her producing partner Martin Bergman.

The Laguna Playhouse artistic director, Ann E. Wareham offers, "Our summer at the Laguna Playhouse wouldn't be complete without the return of Rita Rudner and her first-class brand of comedy. With the inclusion of local singer-songwriter Sasha Evans, we'll pump up the volume a bit for this year's engagement. It will be a fine and fabulous evening of entertainment!"

Tickets are $65 and $55, and can be purchased online at www.lagunaplayhouse.com or by calling (949) 497-ARTS (2787).

One of the country's top comedians and a New York Times bestselling author, Rita Rudner is also an award-winning television personality, screenwriter, playwright, Broadway dancer, and actress. A house-filling favorite in Las Vegas since she opened as one of the hottest tickets in town in June 2000, Rudner is known for her epigrammatic one-liners. She performs at The Venetian in Las Vegas, where over the course of a ten year run and 2,000 plus shows, she has sold over one million tickets and become the longest-running solo show in the history of Las Vegas. She has been named Comedian Of The Year nine years in a row and in 2006 received The Nevada Ballet's Woman Of The Year Award (other recent recipients include Bette Midler, Celine Dion, Chita Rivera and Twyla Tharp).

Rita's first solo HBO special, Rita Rudner's One Night Stand, was nominated for several awards, as was her eponymous English BBC television show that later appeared in the USA on A&E. Rudner's two one-hour specials for HBO, Born to Be Mild and Married Without Children, were ratings standouts and she performed all over the country, filling Carnegie Hall in New York three times and the Universal Amphitheatre in Los Angeles twice. In 2008 Rita Rudner: Live From Las Vegas was PBS's first ever stand-up comedy special.

Rita Rudner has written five books, including her bestselling non-fiction titles, Naked Beneath My Clothes and Rita Rudner's Guide to Men and the novels Tickled Pink and Turning the Tables. The audio version of Tickled Pink received a Grammy nomination. Her latest collection of essays, I Still Have It…I Just Can't Remember Where I Put It, was published in May 2008.

In 2003, Rudner launched from Las Vegas her first syndicated daily TV show, Ask Rita, which featured a panel of celebrities lightheartedly attempting to solve personal problems submitted by members of the public; it ran for two years. For her work on the show, American Women In Radio and Television awarded Rudner a 2004 Gracie Allen Award for Best Program Host. Rita helped write the 2001 and 2003 Oscar shows with Steve Martin and the 2002 Oscar broadcast with Whoopi Goldberg.

Rita Rudner moved to New York at the age of fifteen to become a dancer on Broadway. She appeared in several shows, including the original productions of Follies and Mack and Mabel. It was while in Annie on Broadway that she began exploring the Comedy Clubs of Manhattan. In the early '80s, Rudner took a full-time leap from chorus lines to punch lines and was soon a regular guest on both Late Night With David Letterman and The Tonight Show.

Rudner is a frequent collaborator with her writer/producer husband of twenty years, Martin Bergman. The couple's first produced film script was Peter's Friends. The film, starring Emma Thompson, Hugh Laurie, Kenneth Branagh, Imelda Staunton, Stephen Fry, and Rita, won the Evening Standard Peter Sellers Award for Comedy and was nominated for the Goya Award for Best European Film of 1994. Bergman and Rudner's latest film, Thanks, recently premiered at the 2011 Palm Springs International Film Festival.

The couple's first play – Room 776 – ran as part of the 2008 season of the Las Vegas Little Theatre. Their second play and most recent project with The Laguna Playhouse was the world premiere of Tickled Pink (based on Rudner's novel) which played as the final production of the theatre's season in April 2012.

In 2009, Rita, Bette Midler and Sheryl Crow joined forces to perform a fundraiser for President Obama and the Democratic leader of the Senate, Harry Reid.

Rita Rudner lives in Las Vegas and Monarch Beach, California, with her husband and daughter.

For more information on Rita, log on to her website at www.ritafunny.com or become her fan on Facebook.

An Orange County native, singer-songwriter Sasha Evans has been perfecting her craft since a very young age. Drawing on inspiration from Bob Marley and The Beatles, Sasha received professional voice lessons for over 6 years while pursuing academics at Saddleback Community College with an emphasis on music history studying genres ranging from classical to rock-and-roll. Sasha's performances throughout Southern California, along with her self-produced album titled "Sasha Evans" has brought public life to her whimsical, light, airy and playful sounds.

Ticket Prices: Orchestra: $65; Balcony: $55. Call 949.497.ARTS (2787), or for Group Sales, contact 949.497.2787 ext. 229. Tickets and further information can also be found at www.lagunaplayhouse.com. Moulton Theatre is located at 606 Laguna Canyon Rd., Laguna Beach, Calif.

Founded in 1920, The Laguna Playhouse is one of the oldest continuously-operating theatres on the West Coast. In 2011, The Laguna Playhouse was honored at the Laguna Spirit Awards and received The Laguna Beach Chamber of Commerce Premiere Business of the Year award.

More than 100,000 theatergoers annually attend performances at the Laguna Playhouse. Its continued artistic excellence, audience popularity and critical acclaim have helped make The Playhouse one of Southern California's most important nonprofit theatre companies. The Playhouse has produced national tours of The Belle of Amherst (with Julie Harris) and Copenhagen, and has presented many world, national and regional premieres.

Over the years, the Laguna Playhouse has garnered numerous awards from LA Drama Critics Circle, NAACP, Backstage, OC Weekly, and many more, and was named Best Arts Organization by ArtsOC. Notable performers that have performed at The Laguna Playhouse include Bette Davis, Harrison Ford, Charles Durning, Marlo Thomas, Roddy McDowell, Rita Rudner, Cloris Leachman, and Sally Struthers.

The Laguna Playhouse is noted for its Youth Theater Education and Outreach programs. In 1989, its Youth Theater was recognized as "Outstanding Children's Theatre" by the American Alliance for Theatre and Education. The theater's touring production, TheatreReach, brings books to life on stage for elementary school children throughout southern California.

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