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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 and Harrah’s 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. A new special, Rita Rudner and Three Potential Ex-Husbands, is set to air on Showtime.
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 her first syndicated daily TV show, Ask Rita, from Las Vegas, 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, premiered at the 2011 Palm Springs International Film Festival and premiered on Showtime in March, 2012.