Everything Is Rent

By Beth Appel & Sarah Claspell | Campfire Media

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Jonathan Larson's groundbreaking musical Rent premiered on Broadway in 1996. Over the years, musical theater fans all over the world have become Rent-heads, Rent-haters, and Rent-indifferent-istas. Comedians (and die-hard Rent fans) Beth Appel and Sarah Claspell shoot without a script as they dedicate each episode to a song from Rent, bringing on fellow comedians and musical theater nerds to talk about what they love, hate, and are baffled by in this divisive musical. Viva La Vie Boheme!

Episode Date
Seasons of Love B with Matt Besser

Mumbo jumbo! This week, Beth and Sarah finally get back to the original Rent album with special guest Matt Besser (Upright Citizens Brigade, improv4humans). In addition to doing a lot of surprise singing, Besser reveals that, although he likes Rent, it isn't even one of his TOP FORTY favorite musicals and he describes what he looks for in a musical ("old" and "not a bummer"). Besser also encourages all New Yorkers to move to The Dakotas and he, Beth, and Sarah fail to figure out if it's "spoke wheels" or "spoked wheels."

Feb 19, 2019
Bonus Episode: Valentine's Day with Jesse David Fox

Happy Valentine's Day! Jesse David Fox (Vulture, Good One Podcast) joins Beth and Sarah for what is basically another episode about Rent: Live, but is also about the cut song "Valentine's Day," which both does and does not sound like a Prince song. Jesse talks about the exact moment when Rent made him a crier and his theory that the second act of Rent is "all about the seasons." He also gives listeners a peek into his very odd musical theater playlist, Beth reveals her major issue with the plot of Groundhog Day, and Sarah reminisces about wanting to be a hot soccer girl. Listen to Beth, Sarah, and Jesse come to the definitely wrong conclusion that "Valentine's Day" originally opened Act Two, and prepare to be impressed as Jesse aces the classic trivia game -- "525,600 Cut Songs."

Feb 12, 2019
Bonus Episode: Rent: Live on FOX (PART 2) with Zeke Nicholson

Zeke Nicholson (A.P. Bio, Ironic Chronic) makes history as the pod's first ever repeat guest in this second special episode discussing Rent: Live on FOX. Now that Beth and Sarah have watched the televised version and compiled all the tweets, emails, and DMs (hi Mario!), wow, there's so much more to discuss. For example, does Beth have a rock finger in her butt? How many followers do you need to be an "influencer"? Shouldn't there should be a TV show called "Who Thinks You Can Dance?" Zeke also discusses his desire to slurp the rings right off Mark and Mimi's noses and the staying power of dabbing. You'll also want to tune in for an exclusive, insider story about why Idina Menzel doesn't wear bowling shoes.

Feb 05, 2019
Bonus Episode: Rent: Live on FOX (PART 1)

The first in a special two-part series about the television event of the century -- Rent: Not-So-Live on FOX. Sarah and Beth were lucky enough to be in the studio audience Sunday night, and they dish all the dirt about what went down! They also give their initial reviews of the show and the actors, and they discuss some of the SHOCKING lyric changes -- "December 24th, 9pm, 1991," anyone?? But mostly they talk about how much they love Mario. Stay tuned for a couple little bonus clips at the end of the episode including a brief chat with a man who knows Julie Larson and works at a sandwich shop near Fox as well as Beth talking to the 22-year-old Rent head who sat next to her. And tune in next Tuesday for PART 2 where they discuss and review the dress-rehearsal version that actually aired!

Jan 29, 2019
Take Me or Leave Me with Fredi Walker-Browne

All the "easy hankies" out there better get ready for this emotional episode with incredibly special guest, Fredi Walker-Browne (Maggie's Plan, The Big C) who originated the role of Joanne in Rent on Broadway! Fredi gives Beth and Sarah the inside scoop about her Rent audition and the rehearsal process as well as Jonathan Larson's writing process for "Take Me or Leave Me" (or, as it was originally written in the script, "big boffo musical comedy number here"), which may have been the last song Jonathan Larson ever wrote. Sarah and Fredi bond over how much shoes affect performance and Fredi patiently teaches Beth what the word "sitzprobe" means. If you love Rent and/or people talking about memes, this is the episode for you!

Jan 22, 2019
Happy New Year B with Natasha Rothwell

Natasha Rothwell (Insecure, The Hasseltones Live!) joins Beth and Sarah as they "tap into their feels" about Happy New Year B, including speculation about what exactly the "B" stands for. Natasha talks about seeing a midnight sing-a-long version of Rent and tells the inspiring story of leaving her day job teaching high school drama. They also talk about why Rent appeals to repressed drama kids, when it's not appropriate to say "no day but today," and how to turn You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown into Rent. Listeners will also enjoy an art history lesson from Sarah and a rousing, impromptu duet/trio of "Someone Like You" from Jekyll & Hyde. If you listen closely, you may even smell the whiff of a scheme!

Jan 15, 2019
Voice Mail #3 with Cedric Yarbrough

The McDuckster himself, Cedric Yarbrough (Speechless, Reno 911) joins Beth and Sarah to talk about auditioning for the role of Collins in Rent, the various demon roles he has played in musicals, and to do a standard black mother check. They also chat about many, many other musicals, including Once on This Island, Schoolhouse Rock, Sweeney Todd, and Ragtime, and Sarah makes an official declaration: Musicals are great! They break down Alexi Darling's nonsense email address and Cedric issues a formal apology to Mariah Carey. This episode is sponsored by Toyota, the only car that doesn't blow up.

Jan 08, 2019
Happy New Year with Jon Gabrus

The hilarious Jon Gabrus (High and Mighty) is the latest Long Island native to join Sarah and Beth on the pod! He talks about seeing Grease TWICE on Broadway, brags about being offered the role of Rocky in Rocky Horror at his high school, and makes up New Year's resolutions for the main characters in Rent. They also share many memories related to The Phantom Menace, discuss the first Real World cast, and Gabrus threatens to insert his spot-on Trump/dad impression into Rent.

Jan 01, 2019
Seasons of Love with Joel Kim Booster & Brendan Scannell

Christmas bells are ringing as Sarah and Beth are joined by fellow Rent super fans, Joel Kim Booster and Brendan Scannell (The Cure, Vulture's Comedians You Should and Will Know) to talk about Scarlett Johansson's agent, how being a democratic socialist has rekindled Joel's love of Rent, and to theorize about all that math Jonathan Larson did for Seasons of Love. They also introduce two riveting new segments: "Who has a BA in Theater and who has a BS in Theater?" and "Who's White and Who's Not White?" Listeners will also be treated an EXCLUSIVE, SECRET story Brendan tells while Joel "takes a call" (goes to the bathroom) in the middle of recording.

Dec 25, 2018
La Vie Boheme B with Andrew Hansen & Jake Regal

Sarah and Beth are joined by two of their besties, Jake Regal (Scorpion, Angel in Rent at UCB) and Andrew Hansen (A.P. Bio, Joanne in Rent at UCB) to delve deep into the 25 minute version of Rent their improv team put up at UCB as an April Fool's joke. Jake also talks about rebelling against his family by liking mumblecore movies instead of musicals and Andrew (everyone's dad) explains the difference between "quite a few" and "a lot." Sarah talks about her "friend" who ran all three parts of a triathlon and Jake legitimately blows Beth's mind by decoding the lyrics in La Vie Boheme B. Can we get a bang back??

Dec 18, 2018
I Should Tell You with Guy Montgomery

Guy Montgomery (The Worst Idea of All Time) joins Sarah and Beth in their high tech podcast studio after listening to "I Should Tell You" many, many times, despite actively disliking it. Earning the title of "Guest Who Has Done the Most Research," Guy outlines some differences between the 2008 Broadway Rent revival, a college production, and Vanessa Hudgens' Hollywood Bowl performance. Guy also describes the ideal way to watch the Spongebob musical and delights Sarah and Beth with phrases like "effin' and jeffin' around." And, New Zealand-based listeners will finally be able to relate after they hear Guy explain the NZ equivalents of Alphabet City, AIDS, slang terms for meth, the Life Café, Santa Fe, and more!

Dec 11, 2018
La Vie Boheme with Paul F. Tompkins

Paul F. Tompkins (BoJack Horseman, Superego, Spontaneanation) joins Sarah and Beth to share his "thumbnail Wikipedia knowledge" of Rent and his controversial opinions about the Pope. They break down everything that doesn't make sense in "La Vie Boheme," including the idea of putting equipment in a pyramid and the idea that meatless balls taste the same as meat if you close your eyes. They also google something as a family, compare Rent to both Mr. Show and The Gift of the Magi, and play a rousing game of "Complete the Lyric."

Dec 04, 2018
Over The Moon with Dan Black

Sarah and Beth are joined by their old pal, Dan Black (Comedians of Wrestling) who uses his real New York accent to talk about the "jump over the moon" song, melting pots vs. salad bowls vs. fruit platters, which wrestler would play who in Rent, and more! Dan is a huge Rent fan and brings up some very good questions: How did Mark and all of these Bohemians meet? What the heck do the metaphors in "Over the Moon" mean?? Beth and Sarah also sneak in an episode of their newest podcast, Tit Talk, and they get Dan to state publicly who he thinks the hottest man in the world is.

Nov 27, 2018
Bonus Episode: Listener Email and Tweet Round-Up + The Greatest Showman

First, Beth and Sarah go through some of their favorite (and least favorite, Malala) listener emails and tweets and realize that everyone saw Rent in 1997. Then, Mark David Christenson (Aw...Crap, a Hellboy Podcast) finally gets his own mic and joins Beth and Sarah to discuss The Greatest Showman, which he saw alone to celebrate his niece's birthday??? He also talks about famed director of Moulin Rouge, Laz Buhrmann, Sarah explains how to kiss a burn victim, and Beth does an ultimate ranking of every movie she has ever seen. This episode is brought to you by UrbanDictionary.com.

Nov 20, 2018
Christmas Bells with Jessica McKenna & Zach Reino

Zach Reino and Jessica McKenna (Off Book) kick things off by talking about some of the similarities between La Boheme and Rent (aka La Boheme 2: More La, More Boheme), Zach invents the name "Mimolfo," Jess walks everyone through some hot new slang, and the gang debates whether or not "honest living" is an onomatopoeia. Beth and Jess compare notes on their college productions of Company, Sarah's habit of using her cat's tail as a spoon becomes canon, and they attempt (and mostly fail at) a nearly impossible musical improv segment. Not only does this episode slap -- it's also a bop, it twists, and it's a banger.

Nov 13, 2018
We’re Okay with Mike Scollins

You may know him as Mike Scollins (Late Night with Seth Meyers) and he's here to break down the mysteries of the song "We're Okay" -- What's "the Murget case"? Where is "Penthouse A"? Who is "Newt's lesbian sister"? He also talks about his star turn as Kenickie in Grease, everyone breaks down their first onstage kiss, and Mike comes up with a great new improv warm-up in a bonus episode of "Late-2000s Improv Talk." Also, if anyone thinks the musical The Boyfriend is good, Beth will gladly fight you.

Nov 06, 2018

The main cast for RENT on FOX was announced yesterday, so you know Sarah and Beth had to drop everything (dogs) to record this emergency episode with their very important thoughts on the casting. Is this very podcast the reason Valentina and Keala Settle were cast? Yes. Will Vanessa Hudgens nail the role of Maureen? Unclear. Will Sarah and Beth go to the cast party and make some "Contact" with this extremely attractive cast? Hopefully!

Oct 30, 2018
I’ll Cover You with Eliot Glazer

Eliot Glazer (Haunting Renditions, You’re Making It Worse, Broad City) is a quote unquote “perfect guest” on this week’s episode of Everything is Gwen. He talks about being a Rent kid on the early Rent train, explains why Rosie O’Donnell is actually responsible for the popularity of Rent, and is yet another guest who hates the Rent song they’re talking about. Mostly, though, this episode is about the musical Cats and creepy drama teachers. And, at the very end, Eliot performs a special rendition of Voicemail #1 that you’re not gonna wanna miss.

Oct 23, 2018
Santa Fe with Matt Bennett

Matt Bennett (Victorious, The Big Bang Theory) joins our hosts to brush the sauce onto the meat and explain the choice every Long Island child must make: sports or musical theater. Other topics include the cool girl who got Matt into Rent in middle school, Matt's cool dad who's too cool for Rent, Anthony Rapp's "La Vie Boheme" parody at LeakyCon, and a reimagining of American Idiot starring Tony Shalhoub. #brushthesauceontothemeat

Oct 16, 2018
On the Street with Carrie Poppy

Carrie Poppy (Oh No Ross and Carrie, Hidden Mickeys) traces music all the way back to the first instrument (rocks) and the first musical (wind). She talks to fellow millennials, Sarah and Beth, about seeing Rent on Broadway with the mistaken expectation that "Doogie Howser" was in it, a sexy karaoke performance of "Take Me or Leave Me," and a rude college boyfriend who told Carrie she wasn't good enough to be in Rent. Also worth noting -- 50% of the people involved in this episode have written book reports about Jurassic Park. Now, be a dear and water the orchid.

Oct 09, 2018
Will I? with Philip Labes

Philip Labes (Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., K.C. Undercover, MORE GUNS!) talks to Beth and Sarah about Rent as well as pretty much every other musical ever. Philip describes working with Anthony Rapp on a movie before ever having seen Rent and prepares for his upcoming nostalgia podcast, Everything is Beyblades. Beth blows minds with the reveal that the song “One Night in Bangkok” is from a musical and Sarah reminisces about her years being “heavy in choir.” The trio also casts the Tick, Tick... Boom! movie, starring two Jennifer Anistons as Tick and Tick, and The Rock as Boom. Churro or bust!

Oct 02, 2018
Another Day with Oscar Montoya

Oscar Montoya (Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, Inside the Disney Vault) is scarf. In addition to being scarf, he tells Sarah and Beth about an all-girls, elementary school production of Rent he saw, his childhood dream of being in Stomp, and he boldly describes “Another Day” as a gender-reversed “Baby It’s Cold Outside.” Sarah claims Rent is for “cool kids” and Beth proclaims herself the “Weird Al of Rent.” Enjoy the BONUS FEATURE at the very end where Mark David Christenson wakes from his slumber to ask Oscar for an accurate and definitive casting of Rent characters as Power Rangers.

Sep 25, 2018
Out Tonight with Rachel Bloom

Rachel Bloom (Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, an old Harry Potter Musical) joins Sarah and Beth to record many episodes of a new podcast, "Late-2000s Improv Talk." They also talk about Rent, including Rachel's show-stopping Klingon rendition of "Seasons of Love" and the best argument yet for why the characters in Rent should have jobs. And yeah, they talk about "Out Tonight," but mostly they discuss the line "I think I missed, don't get pissed" from the song "Contact." And don't forget to join us in our campaign to have Rachel play Maureen in Fox's live version of Rent using #pleasepushthedateback!

Sep 18, 2018
Life Support with Lindsey Kraft and Jamie-Lynn Sigler

Lindsey Kraft (Grace and Frankie, dELiA*s catalog) and Jamie Lynn Sigler (The Sopranos), who grew up together on Long Island, stop by to talk about the simple, catchy harmonies in “Life Support.” Lindsey was never in a musical as a kid, but watched Jamie perform in a ton of them and, one time, she got to sit on the edge of the stage with her legs dangling off and do a solo in a show choir Rent-medley. Jamie gives us the scoop on her audition and multiple callbacks to play Maureen at the Hollywood Bowl and someone pulls out an incredible, come-from-behind victory in a new game called “The Rent is Right.” Leather bags!

Sep 11, 2018
Tango: Maureen with John Flynn

John Flynn (Oh, Hey Guys) wanted to talk about any song EXCEPT “Tango: Maureen,” so Beth and (former swing dance champion) Sarah invited him to talk about “Tango: Maureen.” John talks about seeing Rent shortly after it opened on Broadway, watching Daphne Rubin Vega’s final performance as Mimi, and his seedy side hustle handing out infrared listening devices to Rent audience members. This episode also includes the classic segment “How Does Your Face Deal with Crying” and, over the course of the episode, John inadvertently answers several trivia questions Sarah and Beth had planned to ask him in the final segment. Be sure to donate to Everything is Rent’s Kickstarter to get Melissa Etheridge and k.d. lang to record a duet of “Take Me or Leave Me”!

Sep 04, 2018
You’ll See with Kevin T. Porter and Demi Adejuyigbe

Demi Adejuyigbe and Kevin T. Porter (Gilmore Guys, Punch Up the Jam, Good Christian Fun) help Beth and Sarah settle an age-old, Laurel-and-Yanni-esque Rent lyric debate. They also improve upon several of the rhymes in Rent, imagine an alternate universe in which “You’ll See” was the breakout hit instead of “Seasons of Love,” and discuss how they’d adapt the movie Chappie into a hot new Broadway musical. Be sure to donate to Everything is Rent’s Kickstarter to help fund a Rent movie reboot directed by Martin Scorsese! #ThisPodcastRocks

Aug 28, 2018
Today 4 U with Renee Colvert and Allegra Ringo

Allegra Ringo and Renee Colvert (Can I Pet Your Dog) join Beth and Sarah to unpack one of the catchiest, but also most problematic Rent songs. Renee, who spent high school with a blown-up picture of Adam Pascal above her bed, explains the questionable logic she used to reconcile being a dog lover AND a Rent lover. In contrast Allegra’s experience with Rent begins and ends with fast-forwarding through the movie in preparation for coming on the podcast. Other topics include: Angel’s shopping list (coffee, bananas, cigarettes, cereal, and vodka), what exactly the limousine lady means when she asks Angel to “trim her tree,” and the proper, non-murder way to deal with dog noise complaints.

Aug 21, 2018
Voice Mail #2 with Kate Spencer

Well, Joanne, we’re off! You’ll most definitely get “‘90s chills” listening to Kate Spencer (Forever35, The Dead Moms Club) talk about seeing Rent multiple times with ex-boyfriends, performing in the equally groundbreaking Vagina Monologues, and the very mean, Rent-themed antics she got up to in college. Beth impresses with her knowledge that the last word in Voice Mail #2 is “bra,” not “bright,” but is dead wrong in her Bachelorette predictions. Kate re-casts Rent with "modern day actors," this time mostly from Twilight and they ask the ultimate question: How upset would Jonathan Larson be if he had lived to see Starbucks Reserve?

Aug 14, 2018
Light My Candle with Daphne Rubin-Vega

The hilarious and talented Daphne Rubin-Vega originated the role of Mimi in Rent on Broadway! She joins Sarah and Beth to talk about her experience auditioning for and performing in Rent, including the time she forgot her lines in “Light My Candle,” her uniquely un-Broadway singing voice, what it was like working with Jonathan Larson, and the trauma that can come with being in the public eye. She also remembers signing fans’ fake drug stashes and issues a public apology for her mixed messaging regarding drugs after Beth accuses Rent of single-handedly causing the opioid crisis. During a game of “Life After Rent,” Daphne lays out what she thinks the Rent gang might be up to in 2018 (spoiler: Roger owns a Christmas Tree Farm). And, she’s NOT Rosie Perez, so please stop mixing the two of them up!


Aug 07, 2018
One Song Glory with Will Hines

Will Hines (Wrecked, Screw It, We’re Just Gonna Talk About Spider-Man) comes in HOT in this episode, with questions like “Who cares about Rent?” “Why are we talking about Rent?” “Why do you guys like Rent?” and “What’s good about it?” Will saw Rent on Broadway in 1998 and some of his fond memories include Sweater Dude, Guitar Guy, and the song with the numbers. Will reveals that, until told otherwise, he assumes every character in a Broadway play is the mayor of New York and, much like Roger, Will just wants to write one great sketch show before he dies. Sarah, Beth, and Will plan an upcoming production of Jesus Christ Superstar, featuring Will as Caiaphas and they close out the episode with a classic, Rent-themed “True or False, and Do You Like the Question?”

Jul 31, 2018
Tune Up #3 with Grant O’Brien

Grant O’Brien (CollegeHumor) hates Rent and was NOT looking forward to listening to Tune Up #3, a song he describes as the “most bananas 24 seconds of a show ever.” Beth and Sarah try their darndest to convince Grant that Rent isn’t boring, but he really thinks the show would benefit from some tap dancing. Grant claims to love musical theatre, but throws shade at Ragtime, Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera, Phil Collins, and more as this episode raises more questions than it answers: Did Jonathan Larson steal a riff from a Beatles’ song? Do tickets to Maureen’s show cost money? Why doesn’t Rent have more jokes about “zooming in”? And finally, Grant punches up the “jokes” in the first six songs of Rent, giving listeners a chance to put up a Grant-approved version of the musical.

Jul 24, 2018
You Okay Honey? with Nicole Byer

Nicole Byer (Loosely Exactly Nicole, Nailed It, Why Won’t You Date Me) joins Beth and Sarah to talk about her love of Rent, show off her beautiful singing voice many times, and change her name to Bond, Nicole Bond. In the most topic-packed episode yet, learn about Nicole’s surprising favorite musical, enjoy the longest discussion anyone has ever had about Tom Collins’ name, and hear why Angel is a combination of characters from the movie Michael and the TV show Drop Dead Diva. Nicole also plays “f*ck, marry, kill” with the main characters from Rent, and recommends the correct amount of tiny light bulbs to order (assuming they sell light bulbs in sets of 13).

Jul 17, 2018
Rent with Anthony King

Anthony King (Silicon Valley, Beetlejuice the Musical) has seen every musical except Rent, which was the most rebellious thing to do in the 90s. He’s worked with Idina Menzel, Taye Diggs and Anthony Rapp on other projects and can safely say: If everyone in Rent had AIDS, it would be a little too much. Beth and Sarah do their best to answer Anthony’s burning questions about the “plot” of Rent before he attempts to adapt it into a Melrose Place-style television show, and producer Mark David Christenson chimes in about a very special episode of Mr. Belvedere.

Jul 10, 2018
Tune Up #2 with Deborah Baker Jr.

You may know Deborah Baker Jr. (Stan Against Evil) from being the best around town. She's also a real-life Collins, always preordaining a wild night and recommending cheesecloth as a scarf for a warm climate. Deborah talks about her traumatic formative experience with Rent and sort of explains what it means when her belly button hurts. Sarah becomes a human calculator, and Deborah asks the hard questions: "Is his name Tom Collins or Collins Tom?" And finally, Beth and Sarah make Deborah choose which classic Rent character she'd play in a game of "Today for WHO?" Come inside our cake and we'll yum your yum. Sound gross? It is! As always, feel free, and please do.

Jul 03, 2018
Voice Mail #1 with Lauren Adams

The delightful Lauren Adams (Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Masking for Trouble) stops by to talk about the great lengths she went to to force her mom to take her to Rent as a child, explain her confusingly named show choir, and greenlight an all-dog production of Rent. Beth, Sarah, and Lauren also discuss who "Cindy" is, re-cast Rent with "modern day actors," mostly from The Greatest Showman, and Beth uncovers a heart-stopping Easter egg/continuity error in the musical.

Jun 26, 2018
Tune Up #1 with Zeke Nicholson

Sarah and Beth are up bright and early talking to their good pal Zeke Nicholson (A.P. Bio) about the magical day when he first saw the Rent movie with his mom, before a basketball game, but after shopping for Timberland boots. Despite multiple mic-drop-moments for Zeke in this episode, he does not enjoy himself during a game of Rent Trivia and he definitely isn't happy to be talking about a song he doesn't "give a f*** about." We also hear about Zeke's many brushes with Rent royalty including hanging out with an ensemble member as a child and seeing Joanne at an audition. When it comes right down to it, though, Sarah, Beth, and Zeke all agree -- Mark is a little Tisch boy.

Jun 19, 2018
Introducing Everything Is Rent!

Jonathan Larson's groundbreaking musical Rent premiered on Broadway in 1996. Over the years, musical theater fans all over the world have become Rent-heads, Rent-haters, and Rent-indifferent-istas. Comedians (and die-hard Rent fans) Beth Appel and Sarah Claspell shoot without a script as they dedicate each episode to a song from Rent, bringing on fellow comedians and musical theater nerds to talk about what they love, hate, and are baffled by in this divisive musical. Everything Is Rent - coming June 19th.

May 20, 2018