‘Love boat’ star fred grandy to make syracuse debut – the daily orange – the independent student newspaper of syracuse, new york yale universiy

When the cast of “on golden pond” leaves the rehearsal room, they put on hard hats before walking through hallways still under construction at the brand new redhouse arts center.

Ernest thompson’s “on golden pond” is the inaugural show at the new arts center, which is now home to three theaters, the largest seating 425 people. The organization recently said farewell to its south west street venue and is now located at 400 south salina st.

Leading the cast are fred grandy, known for his role as gopher in “the love boat,” and his daughter, marya grandy. They play norman thayer and chelsea thayer wayne, respectively.

The duo is taking on the father-daughter roles made famous by henry and jane fonda in the movie version of “on golden pond,” which was released in 1981.

“there’s much more comedy in this play than I think a lot of people remember,” fred said.Golden pond” “it’s a very tender, poignant scene about growing up and growing old, but it’s also funny.”

Vincent cardinal, the play’s director, said the staff wanted to celebrate the opening of the venue with a forward-thinking show, but also one that’s rooted in the united states’ entertainment tradition.

“we thought of ‘on golden pond’ because it does point to the next generation and hope for the future,” cardinal said. “and then I thought of fred grandy, who is so much a part of the psyche of our entertainment world.”

Cardinal, chair of musical theater and professor of music at the university of michigan, has worked with the grandys in the past. Cardinal directed marya in yale school of drama’s production of “sweeney todd,” and directed fred in “how to succeed in business without really trying” at the connecticut repertory theatre.Musical theater

About a year ago, cardinal reached out to marya and fred to see if they were interested in “on golden pond” at redhouse. The decision was an easy yes for both of them, marya said.

Marya’s background is heavily rooted in musical theater, whereas fred is best known for his screen work. He believes his TV exposure, particularly from “love boat” and the more recent “the mindy project,” helped to reignite his stage career.

“for me, no stage experience is the same,” fred said. “it is a great luxury to be able to proceed methodically through an ensemble and a performance.”

For marya, the rehearsal process has allowed her to see where she and her father differ in their artistic approaches. Fred showed up to the first day of rehearsal with all his lines memorized, which marya credits to his graduate education in shakespearean acting where the text always comes first.Fred said

“because the bulk of my work is in musical theater, I’m generally not off-book until things are staged,” marya said. “I need to get it in my body in order to get it in my brain.”

After only a few weeks of rehearsal, “on golden pond” is set to open on friday at 8 p.M., with a preview on thursday at 7 p.M. Tickets are available online or by calling the box office at 315-362-2785.

The play also stars jan radcliff as ethel thayer and justin dunn as billy. Dunn is a local sixth-grader whom fred said is a “delight to work with” and a “thorough professional,” considering his young age.

Rounding out the six-person cast are john bixler as billy ray and michael J. Farina as charlie martin. The cast, crew and staff are eager to share the energy of the new performance space with the syracuse community.Fred said

“it’s really rare at this point in history to find a brand new theater,” cardinal said. “the idea that they’re doing this in this town at this point in history is kind of a miracle.”