Get ready to laugh with a seasoned, savvy comedienne whose agile mind can go most anywhere — and usually does. Rita Rudner returns to Yavapai College Performing Arts Center (YCPAC), 1100 E. Sheldon St., Prescott, at 7 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 19.

In a fickle entertainment world — where trendy performers quickly burn out — Rudner has accomplished the near-impossible. She has built a sustained, adventurous and multi-faceted career by delighting audiences with sophisticated, well-observed humor. Night after night after night, a news release stated.

The nine-time winner of Las Vegas’s Comedian of the Year Award actually started her career as a dancer. Rudner moved to New York at the age of 15, hoping to dance on Broadway. She appeared in several shows, including the original productions of Follies and Mack and Mabel. It was while she was dancing in the Broadway production of Annie that Rudner began exploring the comedy clubs of Manhattan.

At a time when breaking into the comedy circuit was especially challenging for women, Rudner thwarted all stereotyping with clever, quirky material and a confident command of the stage.

Forced to choose between chorus lines and punchlines in the early ’80s, Rudner jumped into comedy, full-time. Her clever observations on relationships and human behavior, and her smart and sly delivery caught the eye of talent scouts and soon she found herself a regular guest on Late Night with David Letterman and The Tonight Show, the release stated.

Today, Rudner is the most dependable entertainment ticket in Las Vegas, where she has happily held court for more than 20 years. Over the course of a 14-year run and 2,000-plus shows, she has sold one and a half million tickets and become the longest-running solo comedy show in Vegas history. But Rudner enjoys a strong national following, as well. She created three HBO specials — Rita Rudner’s One-Night Stand, Married Without Children, and Born to Be Mild — as well as the first PBS stand-up comedy special, Rita Rudner: Live from Las Vegas.

And she has written five books, including Naked Beneath My Clothes, Rita Rudner’s Guide to Men, and I Still Have It … I Just Can’t Remember Where I Put It.

Tickets for Rita Rudner start at $32. The YCPAC Ticket Office is open Tuesdays and Wednesdays, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Thursdays and Fridays, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. For reservations or more information, call 928-776-2000 or visit www.ycpac.com.

Information provided by Yavapai College Performing Arts Center.

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