'Stars in the House' brings Broadway's best inside your home

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- Even though New York City Theater District remains dark, a webcast called "Stars in the House" makes it possible to hear the best of Broadway without leaving your house.

Twice a week, the brightest stars shine live from their homes, and it costs nothing to log on.

It's a way for both actors and audience to stay engaged, but it's also raising money for those in need.

Since Kelli O'Hara kicked off the series in the middle of March, the stars in this house have been as varied as show business itself, and folks from all around the world are watching.

"It puts people in a great mood and it relaxes them because there's a lot of anxiety out there," says Seth Rudetsky, who conceived the show as a way for him and his husband, James Wesley, to stay busy and help others during the dark days after the lights went out.

While the live show is free on You Tube, viewers are encouraged to donate to the Actors Fund.

"People think Actors Fund is just for the actors, but it's for anyone in any way connected to show business," said Broadway star Melissa Errico, who appeared recently on "Stars in the House."

So far, more than $350,000 has been raised.

"We'll see letters that say, 'Thank you for the money,'" Rudetsky said. "And, they'll say, 'Because of you, I'll be able to buy my groceries this month.'"

With so much of the entertainment world shut down and so many performers idle, the possibilities for the webcast are endless.

For example, it's hard to imagine the Genies from Disney's "Aladdin" getting together on Zoom at any other time. And Rudetsky has branched out beyond Broadway.

"As much as I love the Broadway reunions, I mean, the TV reunions are really freaking the world out and really raising some money," he said.

That is how the "Desperate Housewives" came to be reunited, and on Wednesday, another former member of the cast, Vanessa Williams, will join Rudetsky and his husband to raise money for the NAACP Legal Defense Fund.

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