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Posts Tagged ‘Academy Award’

Super-Sized Comedy: Bruce Vilanch

Friday, November 6th, 2015

Metro Weekly
Super-Sized Comedy: Bruce Vilanch
Bruce Vilanch and Judy Gold team up for an evening of comedy and Hollywood secrets
By Connor J. Hogan on November 5, 2015

4-27-2013 4-01-43 AM

“You get your start in comedy by looking in the mirror and thinking what you see is unusual,” says Bruce Vilanch. “So you start making funny faces and perform for yourself.”

Sixty-six years — and six Emmys — after first catching a glimpse of himself in the mirror, Vilanch is still screwing up his face and cracking wise. His signature heft, charmingly raspy voice, and unstoppable wit marked him for a career in comedy from the get go. It helped that he had a “deep-seated need to express [myself],” Vilanch says. “Also, to be funny.”

More than just a comedian, Vilanch has become a force of nature in Hollywood and is particularly known for co-penning the Academy Awards each year. Now, he’s teamed up with lesbian comedian Judy Gold (a two-time Emmy award winner herself) for Big and Tall: Bruce Vilanch and Judy Gold, playing this weekend at the Alden Theatre. “I’m number one, and she’s number two,” Vilanch quips. The comedians met while Gold was working on Margaret Cho’s sitcom, All-American Girl. “I don’t remember exactly when lightning struck,” Vilanch says, “but we were two big gay Jews, and we’re both very showbizzy, so it was a natural fit.”

But beyond being gay and Jewish, Gold has one more more handicap — at least in Hollywood’s terms — than Vilanch: being a woman. “It was interesting for Judy, because at the beginning she wasn’t out. It was pre-Ellen,” Vilanch says. “And because all women are perceived as romantic figures, the vast unwashed audiences had to think she had a shot at getting a man.”

In our post-Ellen world, however, Vilanch believes comedians can thrive on being gay. “There are people who are Professional Homosexuals, and those who are Homosexual Professionals,” he says. “People who were gay who did what they did, and people who what they did was being gay. When I get up there, I play myself. I’ve been authentic my entire life.” — Connor J. Hogan

Big and Tall: Bruce Vilanch and Judy Gold is Saturday, November 7th at 9 p.m. at the Alden Theatre in the McLean Community Center, 1234 Ingleside Ave., McLean, Va. Tickets range from $20 to $72. For more information, visit

Vilanch, Gold team up to perform at Alden inside the McLean November 7

Wednesday, October 28th, 2015

Washington Blade
October 28, 2015 at 1:57 pm EDT | by Mariah Cooper
Vilanch, Gold team up


Stand-up comedians Bruce Vilanch and Judy Gold perform at the Alden inside the McLean Community Center (1234 Ingleside Ave., McLean, Va.) onSaturday, Nov. 7 at 9 p.m.

Vilanch, who is gay, has been a series regular on the television show “Hollywood Squares” and has written for numerous awards shows including the Academy Awards. Gold, a lesbian, has co-hosted “The View” and worked on “The Rosie O’Donnell Show.” Vilanch and Gold will give separate stand-up performances. General admission tickets are $35. Tickets for McLean Community Center tax district residents are $20.

For more details, visit

Cabaret group honors the year’s best at B.B. King’s

Sunday, April 5th, 2015

North Jersey
Cabaret group honors the year’s best at B.B. King’s
MARCH 28, 2015 LAST UPDATED: SATURDAY, MARCH 28, 2015, 1:21 AM

4-27-2013 4-10-47 AM

Manhattan’s robust cabaret community turned out to honor its own Thursday evening as the annual MAC Awards were presented at B.B. King Blues Club & Grill on 42nd Street.

For 19 years, MAC — the Manhattan Association of Cabarets and Clubs — has honored nightclub performers who make the city a little funnier and a whole lot more musical. Presenters, all of whom continue to work in cabaret, included Julie Budd, Barb Jungr, Billy Stritch, Broadway star Lina Koutrakos, Village People founding member Randy Jones and comic actor Bruce Vilanch, who is perhaps best known these days for co-writing the Oscar, Emmy, Tony and Grammy awards shows.

The 54 Sings Series, created by Phil Geoffrey Bond and produced at 54 Below, took top honors for show of the year.

Top vocalist awards went to Gabrielle Stravelli for her performance at the Metropolitan Room and Stearns Matthews for his shows “Sneak Peak” and “Spark” at The Duplex.

Stacy Sullivan, creator of “On the Air: Songs of Marian McPartland” took the award for best major artist. “Revolution,” which ran at The Duplex, took the best revue trophy. And the award for impersonation went to drag artist Rev Roger Anthony Yolanda Mapes.

Singer/pianist Steve Ross, who reopened the Oak Room at the Hotel Algonquin in 1981 and has performed around the world since then, received one of the evening’s two lifetime achievement awards.

Belter Baby Jane Dexter received the other, and performed two songs after being introduced by Vilanch, who often opened for Dexter when she appeared at the nightclub Reno Sweeney in the 1970s.

The MAC Board of Directors award went to David Kenney, producer and host of the radio show “Everything Old Is New Again” on WBAI-FM.


JQ International honored several successful LGBTQ role models: Bruce Vilanch Was One

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

JQ International honored several successful LGBTQ role models from the arts community as well as a gay religious leader during its annual awards brunch March 8 at the historic Wilson Harding Golf Course Clubhouse at Griffith Park.


From left: Rabbi Barbara Zacky, Bruce Vilanch, JQ International Executive Director Asher Gellis, Faith Soloway and Andrea Meyerson. Photo courtesy of JQ International

Those being feted were folk musician and writer Faith Soloway (JQ Inspiration Award), who also is a writer for “Transparent,” the show created by her sister Jill Soloway; comedy writer and performer Bruce Vilanch (JQ Trailblazer Award); filmmaker Andrea Meyerson (JQ Visibility Award) and Rabbi Barbara Zacky (JQ Community Leadership Award).

“After I came out, I identified strongly as a Jewish lesbian, but there weren’t many places that honored all of me,” Zacky said in a statement. “JQ has created an open and inclusive community of LGBT Jews and I’m so glad to be a part of that.”

Approximately 165 people turned out for the event.

JQ International describes itself as an inclusive community for LGBTQ Jews that raises awareness and acceptance of LGBTQ community members in the Jewish world.

“We create programs and services that foster a healthy fusion of LGBTQ and Jewish identity, which offer LGBTQ Jews, their friends, families, and loved ones the opportunity to connect with each other while fostering a strong sense of self,” the organization’s website indicates.

Kritzerland to Bring ‘THE BIRTHDAY BOYS’ to Sterling’s Upstairs at The Federal, 3/8

Monday, February 23rd, 2015

Broadway World
Kritzerland to Bring ‘THE BIRTHDAY BOYS’ to Sterling’s Upstairs at The Federal, 3/8
February 20, 2015

4-27-2013 3-29-19 AM

Kritzerland at Sterling’s Upstairs at The Federal presents “THE BIRTHDAY BOYS: THE SONGS OF STEPHEN SONDHEIM & ANDREW LLOYD WEBBER” on Sunday, March 8, 2015 at 7:00 PM.

Sue Raney was signed to Capitol Records at age 17 and, with Nelson Riddle, recorded her first album,”When Your Lover Is Gone.” Since then, she’s recorded more than 20 other albums singing Johnny Mandel, Henry Mancini, and dozens of other Great American Songbook songs. She’s been raved about by such NY critics as Rex Reed, who says he’d travel to LA just to hear her sing, by Nat “King” Cole, and by Julie Andrews, who calls her “a marvel.”

Bruce Vilanch (Primarily known as writer for a variety of celebrities, including Bette Midler, Lily Tomlin, Billy Crystal, and many more, he went to write for the Academy Awards, and scored acting roles in the film Mahogany, Bosom Buddies, Law & Order, his own one-man show, and starred on Broadway as Edna Turnblad in Hairspray after playing the role for two years in the show’s first national stage tour.)

Music Director: Lloyd Cooper

For our 55th Kritzerland show we’ve taken two wildly different musical theatre songwriters and paired them up, since no one in their right mind except Kritzerland would do such a thing. Stephen Sondheim and Andrew Lloyd Webber just happen to share a birthday in March – March 22nd to be exact – and we’re here to celebrate that occasion with a wild, wacky and wonderful show. As always, you’ll hear the known and the unknown, the common and the uncommon, from shows such as Follies, Phantom of the Opera, Company, Cats, Anyone Can Whistle, Sunset Blvd. and many more. We’ve assembled an amazing cast and back with us is one of our favorite guest stars, the inimitable Bruce Vilanch. We’ll have some surprises, too, so don’t wait too long to make your reservation. Speaking of reservations, be sure to read the new reservation information below. We’ve switched to a ticketing service for the cover charge – we fought against doing this as long as we could, but all the shows at Sterling’s now use it, and frankly we were simply having way too many people reserve and then not show up, without even cancelling, which means we turned people away. Anyway, it’s easy/breezy. For March only we’re the second Sunday, due to a wedding reception at The Federal on the first Sunday. Kritzerland is produced and hosted by Bruce Kimmel, and co-produced by Adryan Russ.

The only way to reserve now is via Brown Paper Tickets! It’s easy! Go to: This takes you directly to the BPT page for Kritzerland. If you prefer to reserve by phone, call (800) 832 3006. Live operators are available to assist you 24/7! $15 entertainment cover + $5 venue/security fee = $20/ticket. Email confirmations will be sent to you by BPT following your transaction. For anyone wanting to reserve tickets from your SmartPhone, go directly

*Please note: Once you’ve reserved your seats, the BPT cancellation policy kicks in. You have a 12-hour window to make any adjustment in your reservation, or to cancel your reservation for a refund. After that window has passed, all sales are final. No exchanges or refunds.

Early reservations are highly recommended. Dinner reservations: DOORS OPEN 5:30pm. SHOW STARTS 7:00pm! Reservations have already started coming in, and are highly recommended.

Sterling’s at The Federal is located at 5303 Lankershim Blvd., North Hollywood, CA 91601. The Federal Bar is adjacent to the El Portal Theatre. The North Hollywood Stations for the Metrolink Red Line and Orange Line are directly across the street, north of Chandler on Lankershim. Parking is available – entrance for Federal lot is on Weddington Street (directly behind the building) at $3.50. There is also available street parking.

For information (only) about Sterling’s Upstairs at The Federal, visit or call 818 754 8700.

Oscars 2015: Bruce Vilanch’s Guide to Watching the Telecast

Sunday, February 22nd, 2015

Hollywood Reporter
Oscars 2015: Bruce Vilanch’s Guide to Watching the Telecast
By Bruce Vilanch
Feb 22, 2015


Gather all viewing essentials. These should include:

Chinese food
• A cheap bathrobe onto which you can drop pork lo mein in duck sauce
• Boxes of filthy wine
• Popcorn, to make you feel like you are at the movies and not just watching clips of movies you’d never think of seeing
• A Koosh ball in all the colors of the gay-pride rainbow (more on this later)


Red carpet begins

It won’t be the same without Joan Rivers asking:

• Who are you wearing?
• Who are you married to this year?
• Why are you here?
• What is that smell?
• Do you know any single, straight guys in Bel Air (East Gate) who might be interested in my daughter or me, or both of us?


Drink every time someone looks over the shoulder of the person they’re talking to because there’s someone more famous out of camera range.

5:00 P.M.
Half-hour to showtime

• Rid yourself of distractions, including your well-meaning but dim friend who will ask, “But what’s the difference between sound editing and sound mixing?”
• Put on cheap bathrobe
• Open carton of spring rolls


5:30 P.M. 

Neil Patrick Harris bursts forth to host. The biggest shock of the night will be if he offends anyone, even aged Nazi war criminals watching from huts deep in the jungles of Paraguay. But on the Oscars, you never know. People who never watch TV or go to the movies or have ever heard the phrase “self-cleaning oven” invariably tune in to the Oscar show and are outraged by everything they see, hear or think they saw/heard.




Drink every time there’s a shot of an actress with ridiculous cleavage.

Bonus drink if she’s texting or checking her teeth for lipstick. Unless it’s Patricia Arquette, because she just doesn’t care. If it’s a bad year for cleavage, you can substitute a drink for each time the camera lingers on someone that no one on the planet recognizes, which means it’s the director’s spouse or the seat-filler where Marion Cotillard is supposed to be — or it’s Meryl Streep, who has stopped dressing for these things.


6:00 P.M.-ISH
First acting awards: supporting actor/actress

You will know it because it will be presented by last year’s winner, of whom you will have to be reminded. If you love the winner, have a spare rib. If you loathe the winner, here’s where that Koosh ball comes in. Fling it violently at the screen. You’ll do no harm. Repeat this all evening. Very therapeutic. People in the theater will wish they had a Koosh ball. Or any balls.




• Recap of Sci-Tech Awards
• Governors Ball festivities
• Documentary Feature
Documentary Short Subject

Because you probably aren’t interested, unless Kim Kardashian’s rear end is presenting the award.


There may be an awkward political moment when the documentary award is presented. That’s usually when it happens. But by then you won’t care. In fact, as the afternoon turns into evening, a good deal of the audience no longer cares. For each person who wins, there are four people who don’t, so the audience fills up with losers. And with seat-fillers, for losers who are so bitter they’re already at the bar or in the car, or the bar in the car. But you have no such worries. You are in a duck sauce-stained universe, watching Adam Levine manfully tackle a song you’ve never heard from a movie you didn’t see. And in a few hours, there’ll be Julianne Moore looking terrific as she hoists her Oscar high. Next year, you’ll get dressed up and go to a big party. And watch the whole thing on DVR when you get home. Of course you will. Now then, what’s on TCM?