Press and Media
By Kenneth Jones
Highlights from Grumpy Old Men: The Musical will be seen and heard Sept. 17 in a midtown Manhattan industry reading aimed at venue operators interested in booking the show on its upcoming national tour. The 6 PM presentation features Susan Anton, Conrad John Schuck and John Rubinstein, who starred in the Canadian world premiere in 2011.
Producers Jeff Gardner and Ken Denison, in association with Alison Spiriti & AWA Touring are hosting the invitation-only reading, which offers select scenes and songs. They are planning to launch a national tour in fall 2013. No casting for the tour has been announced.
Bill Castellino, who helmed the premiere at the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, again directs.
Tony Award winner Rubinstein (Children of a Lesser God, Pippin, Ragtime) is John, and Schuck (a frequent Daddy Warbucks in Annie on Broadway and around the country) is Max — the two grumpy neighbors originally played by Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon in the 1993 Warner Bros. motion picture. Anton (The Will Rogers Follies) plays Ariel (Ann-Margret in the movie), who inspires them and comes between them.
Grumpy Old Men has music by Neil Berg, lyrics by Nick Meglin and a book by Dan Remmes. Seth Weinstein is the pianist.
The Minnesota-set musical opened at the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, in Winnipeg, Oct. 13, 2011, following previews from Oct. 10 for a run to Nov. 5. Broadway's Ken Page played Chuck, the owner of a bait shop.
Director Castellino's credits include Dr. Radio and Cagney at Florida Stage, Tarzan at North Shore Music Theatre, Jolson at the Winter Garden in Los Angeles.
In 2011, Castellino told Playbill.com that the script expands on the screenplay and fleshes out additional characters, so we now get a more vivid view of the townspeople of Wabasha, MN.