Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Gorey Stories on Broadway

In my post from November 13, 2015, I shared theatrical photos from the Broadway production of Gorey Stories which are in the collection of the New York Public Library, Billy Rose Theater Division. After 15 preview performances at the Booth Theater, Gorey Stories opened and closed on October 30, 1978. The production was missed by many, but it did leave behind several difficult to acquire collectibles.

The Playbill for the show (not in my collection: image from www.movietreasures.com) is quite rare, as is the lovely pinback button created for the opening night performance.

The poster for the show features a scrapbook style image showing "postcards" of the cast, title, and theater information. The drawing of the cast was recreated for one of the publicity photographs for the show, with Edward Gorey wearing one of his fur coats, standing on the right with his back to viewer.

The libretto for Gorey Stories was published by Samuel French, Inc. and it is something of a disappointment for the collector. While it reproduces all of the dialog from the play, it has almost no stage direction and no score. The musical accompaniment presumably needed to be ordered separately. Since the dialog consists almost entirely of the exact wording from the various Gorey books put on stage, and most hardcore Gorey fans can recite the words from their favorite stories by heart, there is little to learned from this volume.

There have been a number productions of Gorey Stories undertaken by theater companies since its original run, and there are several videos on YouTube. Below is a snippet from the 2010 Blackfriars Theatre production.

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