La vida local

Let’s talk about sex: Dr. Ruth’s life chronicled on stage

 

At 85, Dr. Ruth Westheimer still has sex on the brain.

But don’t go to Becoming Dr. Ruth, the one-woman show at the Parker Playhouse in Fort Lauderdale running through Sunday, expecting to hear how to have more fun in bed.

Westheimer is nowhere to be seen on stage; actress Debra Jo Rupp (the mom on That ’70s Show) puts on her best German accent to become Westheimer and tell her amazing, often harrowing life story.

“I’m so impressed by Debra,” says Westheimer from her home in New York City. “I think she really gets me.”

Before she was a celebrity and a sex therapist, Westheimer — born Karola Ruth Siegel in Frankfurt — experienced the Holocaust first hand. After her father was taken to a labor camp, the young girl was sent on a Kindertransport train to Switzerland. She eventually ended up in Jerusalem joining the Haganah paramilitary organization and becoming a sniper due to her height (around four foot seven at last check).

“I don’t think a lot of people knew these details about me,” says the author/ lecturer in her signature chirpy, cheery way. “But yes, it is pretty incredible.”

Indeed, the play isn’t all PG-rated. Rupp also goes into how Westheimer became the famed celebrity sex therapist and re-creates question and answer sessions from her advice radio show that began in NYC in 1980.

Still active and sharp, Dr. Ruth thinks the intimacy problems people experience haven’t changed all that much in the past 30 or so years.

The most universal issue? “Boredom.”

One bright spot for the clueless is the Internet: “You can really learn so much about sex online. It’s infinite.”

Tickets from $28; 954-462-0222, parkerplayhouse.com

Madeleine Marr

Follow @madeleinemarr on Twitter.

Read more People stories from the Miami Herald

  • As seen on TV

    Peter Funt and Mayim Bialik keep ’em smiling on TV Land’s ‘Candid Camera’

    Before prankster hidden camera shows like Punk’d, The Jamie Kennedy Experiment, Practical Jokers and even America’s Funniest Home Videos, there was the grandpappy of them all: Candid Camera.

  • Celebrity birthdays on Sept. 1

    Comedian-actress Lily Tomlin is 75. Singer Archie Bell is 70. Singer Barry Gibb is 68. Talk-show host Dr. Phil McGraw is 64. Singer Gloria Estefan is 57. Singer-musician Grant Lee Phillips (Grant Lee Buffalo) is 51. Country singer-songwriter Charlie Robison is 50. Rap DJ Spigg Nice (Lost Boyz) is 44. Actor Scott Speedman is 39. Rock musician Joe Trohman is 30.

  •  
Andre 3000 of Outkast performs on stage at Wireless Festival at Finsbury Park on July 6, 2014 in London, United Kingdom.

    In the spotlight

    Andre 3000 of Outkast channels Jimi Hendrix

    Since April, André 3000 has been on the road, traveling from festival to festival with his old partner Big Boi to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their debut album as Outkast. And on Sept. 26, he’ll star, under his original name, André Benjamin, as Jimi Hendrix in Jimi: All Is by My Side, a biopic about the year just before Hendrix’s breakthrough, when he moved to London, underwent a style transformation and squared off against Eric Clapton.

Miami Herald

Join the
Discussion

The Miami Herald is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

The Miami Herald uses Facebook's commenting system. You need to log in with a Facebook account in order to comment. If you have questions about commenting with your Facebook account, click here.

Have a news tip? You can send it anonymously. Click here to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Miami Herald and el Nuevo Herald.

Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

  • Marketplace

Today's Circulars

  • Quick Job Search

Enter Keyword(s) Enter City Select a State Select a Category