The founder of the "John Golden Auditions" was himself a theatrical icon. He produced over 125 plays, including such hits as "Lightnin'", "Three Wise Fools", "Seventh Heaven", "Claudia", "Turn To The Right", "Susan And God", and "The First Year." He authored, or co-authored, several hit songs, including one called "Poor Butterfly."
You can read more about him here: Internet Broadway Database.
He had a lot of empathy for the struggling performers, having been one himself. Before he 'made it' in the theater, he cleaned bar rails in the offices of an architectural firm, worked as a bricklayer, and even sold chewing gum in barrooms.The auditions were truly a labor of love for John. "The auditions have proven that, if given the opportunity, capable unknowns can turn on more ability than talent-hungry casting directors ever suspected they'd find," he said.
John Golden was 72 when Rudy had his audition.