Rachael Ray Is the Only Celebrity Chef With a Live Show Right Now
Since the pandemic began in March of 2020, prompting authorities in the US and worldwide to issue shelter in place orders, most television cooks have had to resort to social media to present new recipes or to explain how everyone can make the most of their pantry supplies.
Perhaps that’s the case for most chefs, but not for Rachael Ray, who has distinguished herself by being the only chef to air live shows during the health crisis.
Once Covid hit, Rachael Ray did what she needed to
The Food Network star made the move to her upstate home once it was clear that New York and the entire country were being urged to stay in place and practice social distancing to protect everyone from Covid-19.
She initially saw herself using the downtime to pursue hobbies and endeavors that she’d been putting off for so long.
“I was going to get more serious about my painting. I had all these lofty goals … and none of that’s happening,” she told The Associated Press by phone in April 2020.
As it turned out, Ray and her husband, John Cusimano, began filming her show in earnest.
“We have never worked this hard in our entire lives,” Ray said. Her show is temporarily renamed #StayHome With Rachael and is filmed twice a week from her home.
“This is a weird time. I can’t say there’s a silver lining … but there are found moments every day,” she said during her first filmed show.
Rachael Ray wasn’t keen on filming from her upstate NY home
As much as the 51-year-old star of Rachael Ray wanted to film her show during quarantine, she kind of also didn’t want to.
“The only transition was to let people into this space,” she told The New York Post in May 2020. “This is my home, and over the years Food Network and other media have asked me to shoot here and I’ve always been like, ‘No way. This is my private zone.’ “
The Rachael Ray 50 author discussed the different – more appealing – feeling for her in filming her show wearing uber-casual clothes.
“The very first day I got a little teary and it was a little overwhelming. Here I am in sweats with no studio, no fancy makeup or clothes,” she says. “But it was strangely comforting and cathartic. We get to talk to [guests] on a different level on intimacy. I feel like I’m cutting school every day.”
She’s now the only TV chef airing her show live
While other celebrity chefs, such as Ina Garten and Giada De Laurentiis, are unable to air live content right now, they are providing videos and recipes for fans via their social media accounts.
Rachael Ray, though, has been airing live with shows on Mondays and Fridays since her Manhattan studios closed down in March because of Covid.
“The only people here are me and John, period,” Ray continued. “John is the cameraman, the director … and he tells me all the beats we need for each show. It’s literally two people doing what 100 people would do in the studio on a scaled-down version.”
“John balances the iPhone on a whole bunch of Italian cookbooks so it won’t move and has these giant selfie-sticks with tripods on the bottom. He’s upgraded everything he can upgrade.”