A REVIEW BY ROBB BRAWN
I had the privilege of seeing an advanced copy of The Making Of Grey Gardens The Musical and wanted to share my thoughts.
The DVD features interviews with Al Maysles, Michael Korie, Scott Frankel, Jerry Torre, Christine Ebersole, etc. For the die-hard Grey Gardens Fan, there isn't too much in the DVD that we don't already know. It would be more informative for the casual fan of the documentary or the musical itself. The film includes clips form The Maysles Brother's Film, often followed by the adapted scene from the musical.
It was very nice to see Jerry in modern times, sharing some of his experiences, but there was nowhere near enough interview with Christine Ebersole, but since this project was done by the Gondas, that makes sense. On the subject of the Gondas, it bothered me that they were all excited about the musical in their interviews, but as rumor has it, almost solely responsible for the show's premature closing.
I also felt there was a lot of interesting material left out. I have terrific respect and admiration for the team of Frankel and Korie, who were responsible for the music and lyrics for the musical. Although generally addressed, I had hoped for a more in depth conversation regarding the individual songs, and for that matter, certain lyrics, that were so brilliantly taken from the documentary and placed into the songs. One example of that would be from "Another Winter"... one of the last lines in the song goes "that sapphire blue ocean, oh how can I face" Does everybody know where that line comes from in the documentary (little quiz here !) At any rate, I wish more attention had been paid to that aspect.
There was also really no discussion on the differences between the final Broadway production and the original Playwrights Horizons production. Having seen them both, there were some major changes. About four songs were actually cut out before it came to Broadway, at least one added, and dialog relating to those songs also changed. There is an interview with Korie and Frankel from another source that goes into much more detail. I will post that link shortly.
In closing, I'd still recommend every fan to watch the DVD at some point. I have no idea at this stage when, how, or if, it will be released.