GREY GARDENS Makes Its Cleveland Premiere 2/27- 3/29

What happens when American royalty falls? Beck Center presents the Cleveland premiere of Grey Gardens, the three-time Tony Award-winning musical, in the Studio Theater February 27 through March 29. Based on the 1975 cult-documentary of the same name, Grey Gardens is the hilarious yet heartbreaking story of Jackie Kennedy's delightfully eccentric aunt and cousin, Edith Bouvier Beale and her adult daughter "Little" Edie. Show times are 8:00 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 3:00 p.m. Sundays. There is no performance on Saturday, February 28.

Written by Doug Wright, with music by Cleveland native Scott Frankel and lyrics by Michael Korie, Grey Gardens explores the broken dreams of these two indomitable women who were once among the brightest names in the pre-Camelot social registry but became the subject of tabloid headlines that rocked the Kennedy clan in the early 1970s. The musical is set in two eras: in 1941 when the East Hampton estate was in its prime and more than 30 years later when it was reduced to squalor.

Walter Newkirk, longtime friend of Little Edie, wrote, "The loving but embittered relationship between the two women is perhaps the most compelling theme of the film." A movie version of Grey Gardens, starring Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange, premieres on HBO in April.

Grey Gardens is directed by acclaimed musical director Victoria Bussert. "It's miraculous, a real coup for the Beck Center, to get the rights to produce the area premiere of this Broadway musical." says Bussert. "When Beck artistic director Scott Spence asked me if I was interested in directing this show, I jumped at the chance. It is the King Lear of musical theater for women."

The Beck Center production features Equity actor Maryann Nagel in the dual role of Edith Bouvier Beale (circa 1941 in Act One) and daughter "Little" Edie (circa 1973 in Act Two) and Lenne Snively as the aging Edith in Act Two. The strong supporting cast includes several of Bussert's students from the Baldwin-Wallace musical theatre program.

Tickets are $28 for adults, $25 for seniors (65 and older), and $17 for students (22 and under with ID). An additional $3 service fee per ticket is applied at the time of purchase. Preview night on Thursday, February 26, is $10 with general admission seating. Group discounts are available for parties of 13 or more. To reserve tickets, call the Beck Center box office at 216.521.2540 ext. 10 or visit For group sales, contact Linda Hefner at ext. 29. Beck Center is located at 17801 Detroit Avenue in Lakewood, just 10 minutes west of downtown Cleveland. Free onsite parking is available.

Beck Center's production of Grey Gardens is produced through special arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc. and is sponsored by Cleveland Scene, Cox Communications, the Ohio Arts Council, and Beck Center also gratefully acknowledges the citizens of Cuyahoga County for their support through Cuyahoga Arts and Culture.

Beck Center for the Arts is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization that offers professional theater productions on two stages, arts education programming in dance, music, theater, visual arts, early childhood, and creative arts therapies for special needs students, and gallery exhibits featuring local and regional artists.


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