She may be best known for her role as Erica Kane on the daytime soap opera “All My Children,” but on Friday, Susan Lucci will portray a member of the first family — America’s and reality TV’s — in “Celebrity Autobiography” at Guild Hall in East Hampton.
Lucci, Brooke Shields, Christie Brinkley and Mario Cantone are among the local talents who will act out passages from celebrity memoirs at the one-night-only event. Rounding out the comedic ensemble are Scott Adsit, Ali Wentworth, Alan Zweibel and the show’s creator, Eugene Pack, and co-developer, Dayle Reyfel.
Now in its eighth year, the Off-Broadway show uses text from tell-all, self-help, fitness and even best-selling cook books for each of its 90-minute performances.
“It’s so important to point out that this is not a mean-spirited show,” Pack says. “What it makes fun of is not a particular celebrity; it makes fun of the idea that everyone — if you’re famous — you write a book.”
Pack had the idea for “Celebrity Autobiography” after he came across a used hardcover edition of “Vanna White Speaks” by the “Wheel of Fortune” letter turner.
“I read a passage out loud to myself, this dramatic passage where she writes about how challenging it is to flip the panels on the ‘Wheel of Fortune’ and one day her belt broke on national television and she held on to that loop and she kept flipping those panels,” says Pack, who, along with Reyfel, selects excerpts for the mashups and duels in “Celebrity Autobiography.”
Pack thought if read aloud, it would speak for itself and entertain national audiences because celebrity-written books often yield amusing nuggets.
“You’re thinking, ‘Who wrote these, who were the editors, how did this get past step one?’ when you hear what people write about,” Pack says.
Participants do not rehearse for “Celebrity Autobiography.” In most cases, the talent will practice on the same day of their performances. It’s this spontaneity that producers believe resonates in each reading.
“Watching the performers on stage have such a great time, doing something so simple, is something that audiences love,” Pack says.
WHEN | WHERE 7:30 and 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 25, Guild Hall, 158 Main St., East Hampton
INFO 631-324-0806, guildhall.org
WHO THEY’RE PLAYING
The longtime soap star will read from Ivana Trump’s self-help book, “The Best Is Yet to Come: Coping With Divorce and Enjoying Life Again,” which originally was published in 1995.
The actress and model will recite passages from Ivanka Trump’s 2009 read, “The Trump Card,” in a mashup with Lucci.
The Long Island-born comedian and “Sex and the City” star will portray Geraldo Rivera as he reads excerpts from the broadcast journalist’s early-1990s tell-all, “Exposing Myself.”
The supermodel will provide the voice of Kourtney Kardashian as she reads from the sisterhood autobiography “Kardashian Konfidential,” written by Kourtney, Kim and Khloe Kardashian.