Custom Made Theatre Co. presents the San Francisco premiere of

Grey Gardens, the Musical

1525690_10152873482734402_776851741072461091_nbook by Doug Wright, music by Scott Frankel, and lyrics by Michael Korie.

Directed by Stuart Bousel
Musical Direction by David Brown

Now extended, by popular demand, until July 5th!

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Based on a true story, and the famous cult documentary, Grey Gardens is a musical exploration of the American dream gone wrong and what it means to become a social pariah. In 1973, Jackie Kennedy’s aunt and cousin were discovered living in a squalid Long Island mansion, hanging on to reality by a thread. Grey Garden, the Musical examines both the back-story of this fascinating family, and the fate they couldn’t possibly have imagined..

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Tickets at: www.custommade.org/tickets

Preview May 22& 23, 8:00 pm; May 24 7m
Opens May 26, 8:00 pm
Runs May 28- June 21 July 5th! Thurs-Sat 8:00 pm, Sun 7:00 pm

Tickets $20-$50

Getting to Gough Street Playhouse

Visit our directions page to plan a route via Google Maps.  Save the planet, take public transportation!

Parking

Last minute parking on-the-street is not recommended, but is possible with some planning.

On weekday evenings a good approach is to park at 7:00pm between Bush and Pine on Franklin Street, just when it stops being a tow-away zone. At that time there are plenty of spaces, and plenty of restaurants to grab some dinner pre-show!

There are also plenty of parking lots between Geary/Van Ness and the Theatre.

Tickets at: www.custommade.org/tickets

 

Media Contact:

Rising Moon Marketing & Public Relations

(925) 672-8717, carrpool@pacbell.net

 

Custom Made Theatre Co. Presents the San Francisco Premiere of Grey Gardens, the Musical, May 22-June 21 July 5th!

Based on a true story and the famous cult documentary by the Maysle Brothers, Grey Gardens is a musical exploration of the American Dream gone wrong and what it means to become a social pariah. 

San Francisco. April 24, 2015.  In 1975, filmmakers Albert and David Maysles brought their cameras into the crumbling, palatial estate of Edith Bouvier Beale (the aunt of Jackie Kennedy) and her daughter, Little Edie. There they found two women ostracized from their community, hanging on to reality by a thread, and surrounded by dozens of cats and raccoons. Grey Gardens, the Musical examines both the back-story of this fascinating family and the fate they couldn’t possibly have imagined. It was the first musical on Broadway ever to be adapted from a documentary.

Named one of Broadway’s “Best of 2006,” Grey Gardens, the Musical  boasts a book by Doug Wright, music by Scott Frankel, and lyrics by Michael Korie.  The Custom Made production is directed by Stuart Bousel, with musical direction by David Brown.

Grey Gardens, the Musical previews May 22-24, opens May 26, and runs through July 5th, 2015 at Gough Street Playhouse, 1620 Gough Street, San Francisco. (415) 798-CMTC (2682) www.custommade.org 

The Cast features David Brown, Nathan Brown, Nandi Drayton Mary Gibboney, Gabriella Jarvie, Juliana Lustenader, Heather Orth, CC Sheldon, Dave Sikula*, and Daniel Solomon.

Creative Staff includes William Campbell – lights, Cat Howser – stage manager, Brooke Jennings* – costumes , Stewart Lyle* – scenic design, Kim Saunders* – choreography

*member, Custom Made Theatre Co. 

The Perfect Chamber Musical

“With an intimate, musical score that borrows as much from Stephen Sondheim as the eras in which it is set, Grey Gardens is the perfect chamber musical. Since the show presents such a unique and intimate look into the lives of its two main characters, re-envisioning it as a chamber musical provides an opportunity to heighten those aspects of the score and story that plumb the depths of the Beales. Adding to the intimacy of the Custom Made production, musical director David Brown provides the accompanying piano music and also plays the role of Gould, the Beale’s pianist.

“We know that the Beales were a musical family.  It was important to both Edith and Edie to have music in their lives, so the material lends itself well to musical interpretation.  By having the entire accompaniment provided by the Beales’ real-life pianist (George Gould Strong) – as a historic figure in act one, and as a ghost in act two – we’re threading the music deeper into the text.” – Director Stuart Bousel

 

Background – The Real Grey Gardens, Home of “Big Edie” and “Little Edie”

Edith Ewing Bouvier Beale (1895–1977), often known as “Big Edie”, and her daughter Edith Bouvier Beale (1917–2002), known as “Little Edie”, were the aunt and the first cousin, respectively, of former US First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. The two women lived together at the Grey Gardens estate, for decades with limited funds in increasing squalor and isolation. The house, located on Long Island, NY in the East Hamptons, was called Grey Gardens because of the color of the dunes, the cement garden walls, and the sea mist

Throughout the fall of 1971 and into 1972, their living conditions—their house was infested by fleas, inhabited by numerous cats and raccoons, deprived of running water, and filled with garbage and decay—were exposed as the result of an article in the National Enquirer and a cover story in New York Magazine] after a series of inspections (which the Beales called “raids”) by the Suffolk County Health Department. With the Beale women facing eviction and the razing of their house in the summer of 1972, Jacqueline Onassis and her sister Lee Radziwill provided the necessary funds to stabilize and repair the dilapidated house so that it would meet village codes.

Albert and David Maysles became interested in their story and received permission to film a documentary about the women, which was released in 1976 to wide critical acclaim. Their direct cinema technique left the women to tell their own stories. In a 2014 Sight and Sound poll, film critics voted Grey Gardens one of the best documentaries of all time.

Edith and Edie and the “American Dream”

“I think audiences have found the Beale’s story compelling because, as Americans, we are always interested in perspectives on the “American Dream.” In particular, we are fascinated by it when it appears to have failed. Most of us fundamentally think we’re going to succeed at the American Dream – optimism has always been a huge part of the American character. So when someone fails at the Dream in such a high-profile way, it’s like the proverbial train wreck – we can’t look away, and we wonder: could that have been me? That said, I don’t think Edith and Edie fail; I think they re-write the American Dream in a way that resonates with us more and more as time goes on.

 

“By their own assertion, Edith and Edie they’re “staunch women”, rigid individualists.  Their refusal to give up, to be anyone but yourself and to live by your own terms, is also very American, and it’s inspiring, particularly in a modern America where the conventional American Dream has become more and more remote for many people. Edith and Edie may have made train wrecks of their lives, lost their fortune and their glamour, but their spirit is undeniably pioneer, resilient, and rebellious, and they are entirely, utterly, uniquely themselves.” – Director Stuart Bousel

Show Times and Tickets

Previews: May 22 & 23, 8:00 pm; May 24, 7:00 pm

Opens: May 26, 8:00 pm

Runs: May 28-July 5th; Thurs-Sat 8:00 pm, Sun 7:00 pm

Tickets: $20-50

Learn more & buy tickets at (415) 798-CMTC (2682), http://www.custommade.org

 

For Calendar Editors 

Grey Gardens, the Musical.  San Francisco premiere of the award-winning musical, based on the true story and famous cult documentary.  Jackie Kennedy’s aunt and cousin are discovered living in a squalid Long Island mansion, hanging on to reality by a thread. Book by Doug Wright, music by Scott Frankel, lyrics by Michael Korie.  Directed by Stuart Bousel, with musical direction by David Brown. Previews May 22 & 23, 8:00 pm; May 24, 7:00 pm, Opens May 26, 8:00 pm, Runs May 28-July 5th; Thurs-Sat 8:00 pm, Sun 7:00 pm.Tickets $20-50. Gough Street Playhouse, 1620 Gough Street, San Francisco. (415) 798-CMTC (2682) www.custommade.org

Custom Made Theatre Co. 2015/16 season – Our 17th in San Francisco

This is Our Youth by Kenneth Lonergan  Sept-Oct

In Love and Warcraft by Madhuri Shekar ** Nov-Dec

Of Serpents and Sea Spray by Rachel Bublitz * Jan, 2016

Sam and Dede, or My Dinner with Andre the Giant by Gino DiIorio * Feb, 2016

Middletown by Will Eno **  March-April, 2016

Six Degrees of Separation by John Guare May-June, 2016

*World Premiere ** Regional Premiere

Media Contact:  Gary Carr, Rising Moon Marketing & Public Relations, (925) 672-8717, carrpool@pacbell.net

 

Custom Made Theatre at Gough Street Playhouse, 1620 Gough Street, San Francisco 94109

 

Grey Gardens, the Musical

The action takes place on the Grey Gardens estate in the wealthy Georgica Pond neighborhood of East Hampton, NY, 1941 & 1973.

There will be one 10-minute intermission 

Cast

Edith Bouvier Beale (1941)/”Little” Edie Beale (1973) ……………..Heather Orth
Edith Bouvier Beale (1973)…………………………………………………Mary Gibboney
“Little” Edie Beale (1941)/Sister Marla…………………………..Juliana Lustenader
George Gould Strong…………………………………………………..David Aaron Brown
Joseph Patrick Kennedy, Jr./Jerry……………………………………….Nathan Brown
J. V. “Major” Bouvier/Normal Vincent Peale……………………………Dave Sikula*
Brooks Sr./Brooks Jr…………………………………………………………Daniel Solomon
Jacqueline “Jackie” Bouvier………………………………………………..Nandi Drayton
Lee Bouvier……………………………………………………………………….Gabriella Jarvie

Understudy for Young “Little” Edie Beale (performing 6/18-6/21)……..CC Sheldon

Staff/Crew

Director……………………………………………………………………………..Stuart Bousel*
Musical Director………………………………………………………..David Aaron Brown
Choreographer………………………………………………………………….Kim Saunders*
Stage Manager………………………………………………………………………Cat Howser
Scenic Designer/Technical Director……………………………………….Stewart Lyle*
Costume Design…………………………………………………………….Brooke Jennings*
Lighting Design…………………………………………………………….William Campbell
Sound Design………………………………………………..Liz Ryder*/Maxx Kurzunski*
Properties Design…………………………………………………………………..Cat Howser
Scenic Painter………………………………………………………………….Nicola McCarthy
Dialect Coach…………………………………………………………………….Rebecca Castelli

*member, Custom Made Theatre Co.

“A richly dramatic musical…a heartbreaking contrapuntal aria of shattered dreams and lost opportunities.” – Robert Sokol, San Francisco Examiner

“A truly remarkable production…director Stuart Bousel brings a production of heart, grit, emotion and humor.” – Kevin Thomas, Progressive Pulse

“Stuart Bousel’s staging … benefits from his usual excellent stage pictures and psychological insight” – Charles Kruger, TheatreStorm

“Heather Orth’s performance is a stunning artistic achievement…[she] is a force of nature whose performance no one should miss.”– George Heymont,MyCultural Landscape

“A marvelous production…Scott Frankel’s music is wonderful…Michael Korie’s lyrics are ingenious and urbane….” – Richard Connema, Talkin’ Broadway

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