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Jason Alexander Shares Chita Rivera Stories, the Cast of COMPANY Talks 'Sorry-Grateful' & More on STARS IN THE HOUSE

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Jason Alexander Shares Chita Rivera Stories, the Cast of COMPANY Talks 'Sorry-Grateful' & More on STARS IN THE HOUSE

The Actors Fund has teamed with SiriusXM Broadway host Seth Rudetsky and his husband, producer James Wesley, to produce a daily mini-online show, entitled Stars in The House, featuring stars of stage and screen singing and performing live (from home!) on social media to promote support for The Fund's services for those most vulnerable to the effects of virus (COVID-19).

Stars In The House continued last night (9pm) with Jason Alexander and the cast of Company!

The episode included Jason Alexander sharing stories with former co-star and one of the episodes' special guests, Chita Rivera, and singing from Pippin and Merrily We Roll Along. Members of the cast of Company, including Christopher Sieber, Christopher Fitzgerald, Jennifer Simard, as well as original Company cast member Pamela Myers (who sang Another Hundred People), appeared later in the episode to talk about what the show means to them and more!

When asked what he was doing to stay healthy Jason Alexander joked, "Why would now be different than any other time? Do I look like the poster child for health to you?"

When Chita Rivera made an appearance on the screen, Jason shared a story about his time in the Kander & Ebb musical The Rink, with Rivera and Liza Minnelli:

"When Liza would miss a show, the audience could have a refund that night if they so chose, and one night the number that stayed was very low, and I think the stage managers came to [Chita] and said, 'Chita, I don't know, there's maybe a hundred people, do you want to do this? Do you want to bag it?' The first thing this woman said was, there were six guys in the show, and she said 'If we don't do the show, will the boys be docked a part of their salary?' The stage manager said, 'Yes.' She said, 'Well, call the boys down here, let's talk.' So all six of us went to [Chita's] room. And [Chita] said, 'You know guys, here's the story, there's not many people out there, but we have a new understudy for Liza, she hasn't really had a big rehearsal, we could treat it like a big rehearsal, we'll go out, have a good time, we'll have a blast and be silly and have fun, and that way nobody will have to suffer or lose any salary.'... and before we left [Chita's] room, she said, and this is what elevated [her] to goddess in my mind, [she] said, 'Boys, the people that stayed, stayed. Give them our show."

When the cast of Company came onto the screen to celebrate what would have been their opening night on Broadway, they discussed their thoughts on the song Sorry-Grateful.

Seth shared that he sang the song in his high school production. "I didn't understand the lyrics until like, a year ago."

Christopher Sieber shared, "When I heard the song, I've heard it pretty much my entire life because the show is as old as I am. But, I always thought it was kind of a funny song. When you hear it on the cast recording it comes across in a different way. When you think about it, it's like trying to explain marriage, which is an inconceivable concept, to a two year old. That makes me laugh. Because you're trying to explain something that's unexplainable to somebody. There are so many things in the song that anyone in a long term relationship or marriage will go, 'Oh yeah, that's what it is.' But to explain it to somebody who doesn't understand? It's impossible."

New shows will be produced DAILY at the traditional theater times of 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. ET. Each star will be singing a mix of their hit songs and/or something unexpected. Between each song, Seth will interview the star as he does on SiriusXM, leading them to give fun, inside stories about their careers. Both the star and Seth will encourage people watching to donate at ActorsFund.org/Donate and James will be giving updates from The Fund as well as giving shout-outs to people donating in real time.

Though best known for his award-winning, nine year stint as the now iconic George Costanza of television's "Seinfeld," Jason Alexander has achieved international recognition for a career noted for its extraordinary diversity. Aside from his performances on stage, screen and television, he has worked extensively as a writer, composer, director, producer and teacher of acting. In between all that, he has also become an award-winning magician, a notorious poker player and a respected advocate on social and political issues.

Alexander began his professional career as a young teenager doing commercials for television and radio. While still in college, his desire to work as a stage actor in New York came to be with his debut in the original Broadway cast of the Hal Prince/Stephen Sondheim musical Merrily We Roll Along. He continued starring on Broadway in the original casts of Kander and Ebb's The Rink, Neil Simon's Broadway Bound, Rupert Holmes' Accomplice and his Tony Award-winning performance in Jerome Robbin's Broadway. Alexander also authored the libretto for that show which went on to win the Tony Award for Best Musical. After moving to LA, Alexander continued working in the theater, notably serving as the artistic director for the Reprise Theatre Company and starring in the hit West Coast production of Mel Brook's The Producers with Martin Short. In 2015, Alexander returned to Broadway to star in the Larry David comedy Fish in the Dark and recently appeared in John Patrick Shanley's The Portuguese Kid at Manhattan Theatre Club.

His many films include Pretty Woman, Jacob's Ladder, Love Valor Compassion, Rocky and Bullwinkle, Dunston Checks In, The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Shallow Hal. In addition, he directed the feature films For Better or Worse and Just Looking. He is also a distinguished television director, overseeing episodes of "Seinfeld," "Til Death," "Everybody Hates Chris," "Mike and Molly," "Criminal Minds" and "Franklin and Bash." He won the American Country Music Award for his direction of Brad Paisley's video "Online," and he has helmed a number of stage productions including The God of Hell at The Geffen Playhouse, Broadway Bound at the Odyssey, an updated revival of Damn Yankees and The Fantasticks, as well as Sunday in the Park with George for Reprise and most recently the world premiere of Windfall by Scooter Pietsch for the Arkansas Repertory Theater.

Aside from "Seinfeld," Alexander has starred and guested in shows including "The Grinder," "Drunk History," "Friends," "Two and a Half Men," "The New Adventures of Old Christine," "Criminal Minds," "Monk," "Franklin and Bash," "Curb Your Enthusiasm," "Bob Patterson" and "Listen Up." He was recently seen in "Hit the Road" a show he co-created, executive produced and starred in on DirecTV's Audience network. He also starred in the television films of Bye Bye Birdie, Cinderella, A Christmas Carol and The Man Who Saved Xmas. Additionally, his voice has been heard most notably in "Duckman," "The Cleveland Show," "American Dad," "Tom and Jerry" and the children's animated series "Kody Kapow."

For his depiction of George on "Seinfeld," Alexander garnered six Emmy nominations, four Golden Globe nominations, an American Television Award and two American Comedy Awards. He won two Screen Actors Guild Awards as the best actor in a television comedy despite playing a supporting role, and in 2012 he was honored to receive the "Julie Harris Award for Lifetime Achievement" from The Actors Fund.

The full principal cast for Company includes Katrina Lenk as Bobbie, Patti LuPone as JoAnne, Rashidra Scott as Susan, Greg Hildreth as Peter, Matt Doyle as Jamie, Christopher Fitzgerald as David, Christopher Sieber as Harry, Jennifer Simard as Sarah, Terence Archie as Larry, Etai Benson as Paul, Nikki Renée Daniels as Jenny, Claybourne Elder as Andy, Kyle Dean Massey as Theo, and Bobby Conte Thornton as P.J.

At Bobbie's 35th birthday party all her friends are wondering why she isn't married; why she can't find the right man and why she hasn't settled down to have a family. The multi-award winning musical comedy about life, love and marriage includes Stephen Sondheim's iconic songs, "The Ladies who Lunch," "Being Alive," "Side by Side," and "You Could Drive a Person Crazy."

Photo Credit: Walter McBride / WM Photos




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