Why 'Grumpy Old Men' Makes For A Happy New Musical

Rob Bartlett has been an entertainment jack of all trades since his earliest days. He can sing, act, dance, tell jokes and even write a smash hit… well, maybe not the last part; he is quick to remind people that The New York Times review of his first play, More to Love, ended with this sentence: “Avert your eyes.”

Bartlett appeared on 710 WOR’s Len Berman and Michael Riedel in the Morning program to discuss his latest project, a musical adaptation of the movie Grumpy Old Men at the Seven Angels Theatre in Waterbury, Connecticut.

“They’ve turned a movie into a Broadway musical, except this one’s actually good,” Bartlett told Berman and Riedel. “It has everything the movie had. It has the comedy and the relationship between the Jack Lemmon and the Walter Matthau character; they’re at each other’s throats. It also has Grandpa, the Burgess Meredith character, and all that kind off-color humor that Grandpa spouts in the movie is in the show, but they’ve expanded it. New characters, but it keeps the flavor of the show… audiences are loving it.”

Bartlett also discussed some of the changes the company made to adapt the 1993 film to the stage. “I have a date with the Ann Margaret character in her house, and she has one of those rain sticks that they have in Central American countries, and she does a little dance with it, and then she hands it to me and I do a little dance. Well, that part of the show has been getting longer and longer as the run continues, because the cast is now in the wings, wanting to see what I’m gonna do with it next.”

Grumpy Old Men is currently playing Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at the Seven Angels Theatre in Waterbury, Connecticut. Tickets can be purchased at SevenAngelsTheatre.org or by calling 203-757-4676.

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