Sometimes life and relationships should be looked at with a sense of humor, which famed comedian Rita Rudner will do at the third annual Casino Royale in greater Sedona.
On Saturday, April 3, Rudner will entertain with her puckish smile, lethal wit and soft-spoken delivery to raise money for the Scorpion Booster Club of Sedona Red Rock High School and the Rotary Club of Sedona.
“I’ve always wanted to come to Sedona,” Rudner said in a recent telephone interview. “We’re bringing our little girl, Molly. I like to experience new places with her, and I’m also coming to see my friend, Bonny Singer.” Rudner and her husband and producer, Martin Bergman, adopted Molly in 2002.
According to Singer, Rudner will perform her Las Vegas stage show. Since 2001, Rudner has performed almost exclusively in Las Vegas.
Rudner’s show is perfect for the Casino Royale, Singer said. Included in the evening will be blackjack, craps, poker and roulette, along with an auction of wine, jewelry, art, vacations and more. People who attend will be given start-up gaming money, enjoy live music, a buffet and Rudner’s show.
Proceeds from the event go directly toward the latest hands-on computer technology for students as well as programs such as Teen Health and Wellness.
The Rotary’s portion of the funds will sponsor the Student of the Month Scholarship Program at Sedona Red Rock High School, the International Exchange Student Program, the Rotary Youth Leadership, the St. Andrew’s Church community dinners and the Polio Plus Program.
Rudner did well as a dancer, but she saw there were a lot of female dancers in New York but only a few female comedians, so she began researching her favorite comedians, including Woody Allen and Jack Benny.
Rudner appeared on several television shows in the United States and Great Britain, often on “The Tonight Show starring Johnny Carson” with lines like, “I was a vegetarian until I started leaning toward the sunlight,” and “I was going to have cosmetic surgery until I noticed that the doctor’s office was full of portraits by Picasso.”
Along the way, Rudner recorded several award-winning comedy specials and her talents include a screenplay with Bergman, “Peter’s Friends,” in which she also acted. She authored books including, “Tickled Pink” and “Turning the Tables.” Rudner created and hosted the improvisational comedy talk-type show “Ask Rita.”
Rudner’s clever observations, sharp timing and style won her Best Comedian in Las Vegas for the past eight years.
Rudner’s appearance in Sedona came about through a conversation with Singer about the Casino Royale.
“I wanted to help Bonny [Singer] and thought it would be a fun thing to do,” Rudner said.
She will tailor her Las Vegas show to fit Sedona, so Rudner will spend some time before the show gathering ideas.
“My favorite thing on stage is to make people laugh. Laughter is healthy. Even though I don’t laugh, it’s cathartic for me to hear them laugh,” Rudner said. “I want everyone to have
a very good time and to be
Rudner has only two requirements: the audience be men and women, and they be alive.
Casino Royale is hosted by Enchantment Resort, 525 Boynton Canyon Road. Advance tickets can be purchased at Bashas’ Sedona, 160 Coffee Pot Drive; Salon Virtu, 1350 W. SR 89A; The Art of Wine at the Shops at Piñon Point, 101 N. SR 89A and at Sedona Red Rock High School, 995 Upper Red Rock Loop Road.
For more information, call 821-2800.