Following more than a year of empty auditoriums, silent music halls, and dark theaters, stage lights and sound systems are turning back on in performance spaces across the country. To celebrate the official return of Broadway this fall, Staging Concepts—a leading national provider of staging solutions and equipment—has joined forces with SiriusXM’s Broadway Channel personality Seth Rudetsky and his husband, producer James Wesley, to host a special live event at New York City’s Town Hall Theater featuring appearances and performances by some of Broadway’s top talents. The live production of Rudetsky and Wesley’s popular Stars in the House series will take place on Monday, October 25th, courtesy of title sponsor Staging Concepts, a division of Trex Commercial Products.
As Cindy Albrecht—director of sales and marketing for Staging Concepts—says, “Few industries have been as impacted by the pandemic as live theater and events.” She continues: “We work intimately with theaters and performance venues of all types, and we know what a long, dark period of pause and uncertainty this has been for the entire industry. We share in the excitement of this much-anticipated return of live productions and are pleased to have this opportunity to share in the celebration by giving back to the wonderfully resilient community that we serve.”
The Celebrating the Return of Broadway event will be a special live version of Stars in The House, an online series launched by Rudetsky and Wesley during the pandemic to help support the Broadway and performing arts community. Episodes feature stars of stage and screen sharing stories and performing live—from home—to promote support for charitable services for those most vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19. The Town Hall event will mirror the show’s typical format, featuring interviews and presentations by prominent Broadway and New York personalities, along with live musical acts by some of Broadway’s best and most beloved performers.
Among the stars currently slated to appear are Chita Rivera, Kelli O’Hara, Laura Benanti, Liz Callaway, Dana Delany, Andy Karl, Anika Larsen, Bebe Neuwirth, Brenda Braxton, Charlotte d’Amboise, Christine Pedi, Marc Shaiman, Orfeh, and Schele Williams. The event will be livestreamed on starsinthehouse.com for the viewing pleasure of audiences around the world.
As Wesley states, “Seth and I are so excited to bring the show that we have been doing from our house for the past seventeen months to The Town Hall in New York City, in front of a live and in-person audience.” Wesley also points out the additional benefit of the show: “We’re going to look back at some of our favorite moments from the show with the artists actually on stage beside us and, of course, celebrate the return of Broadway with live performances—all while celebrating the work of everyone at The Actors Fund.”
Since the first episode aired on March 16, 2020, Stars in the House has raised more than $1 million to benefit The Actors Fund, and over $264,000 for other charities, including the NAACP Legal Defense Fund, the Trevor Project, the Humane Society of New York, the Waterkeeper Alliance, You Gotta Believe, Cancer Support Community, New York City Gay Men’s Chorus, Youth Pride Chorus, and more. Proceeds from the Town Hall Theater event will benefit The Actors Fund as well as Your Kids Our Kids, a non-profit organization providing funding and support to organizations who are working to defend basic civil and human rights to marginalized groups. Additionally, Staging Concepts is donating a large block of tickets for the event to be given to stage crew and theater professionals significantly impacted by the pandemic so that they may join in the celebration.
Albrecht notes that “The mission of Staging Concepts is to elevate the abilities of all people to safely access and enjoy amazing life experiences, and we can only do that when there are amazing live events to experience.” She goes on to say, “We are so grateful to Seth and James for the tireless work they have done to support the performing arts community during this difficult time and are proud to be part of such a momentous and meaningful event.”
Tickets for the live “Stars in the House” event are available through Ticketmaster starting at just $25. For additional information, visit starsinthehouse.com. To learn more about Staging Concepts, visit stagingconcepts.com.