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TIM GRUNDMANN 1950 - 2015

Tuesday, December 15, 2015 ... a phone call from Tim's husband Rami Cohen. Tim passed away last Thursday. Tim was 65 years old. So many of us are in shock and greatly saddened by this news. Too many superlatives swirl in my head in trying to write this paragraph so let me simply say that from June 1976 to August 1982 many of us were extremely fortunate to work with and learn from this amazingly talented man at New Playwrights' Theatre. (a little history follows the photo galleries below)

 

YOU MAY LISTEN to one of Tim’s last musical creations by going to these two videos on YouTube - you'll hear & watch it played by a trio of very talented classical musicians. Part one is found at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8zIGyxAq6Ic  -- Part Two is found at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hMmNt95RF3Q&feature=related

 

YOU MAY READ an obit for Tim in the NY TIMES and leave your own tribute by going to this site:

 

 

YOU CAN READ a little more about Tim in his post-MPT days by going to this feature in the Washington POST:

 

 

For those who knew and worked with Timmy, here are photos that I hope will spark happy memories of those 6 incredible years. Rest in peace, dear friend. Eternal be your memory.

 

THE GRUNDMANN SHOWS PRODUCED BY NEW PLAYWRIGHTS' THEATRE, Washington DC

     SIROCCO the hot new musical revue

     THE BRIDE OF SIROCCO the new hot new musical revue

            (at NPT then moved for open run at The West End Theatre)

     NIGHTMARE!! (1977)

     NIGHTMARE!! (revival 1978)

     OUT TO LUNCH

     EDDIE'S CATCHY TUNES

     I LOVE ANNA MAGDELANA (a radio play - two episodes broadcast over WGMS FM)

     DEAR DESPERATE

     LIVES OF THE GREAT COMPOSERS

     NIGHTMARE!! (revised & revived - 1981)

     GROWNUPS

    AN EVENING WITHOUT LIZA MANNELLI

    AN EVENING WITH SHIFFMAN & VANCE (Philadelphia)

    THE NEW IMPROVED BRIDE OF SIROCCO

 

CLICK ON THIS LINK TO HEAR

"Work It Girl" From EDDI​E'S CATCHY TUNES

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkuKRYA9ME8

OTHER SAMPLE SONGS

I WILL ATTEMPT TO CREATE LINKS TO MP3 VERSIONS

OF SOME OF THE SONGS FROM HIS SHOWS

(tune in later for more)

 

TIM GRUNDMANN AT NPT

playwright, composer, lyricist, musical director

 

I wish I could take credit for it, but I can't. Fact of the matter is, it's all thanks to Ken Bloom.

 

INSERT PICTURE: Ken & Tim in our offices circa 1979

 

In the summer of 1976 I was crazed ... trying to juggle what Granville needed for his Bi-Centennial children's plays tour, with assisting a new theatre company with its first season over on the eastern shore of Maryland, while hosting Inner Visions Ensemble's production of Edward H. Adam's MAMA OF THE YEAR, and planning for a summer musical production while helping with the sand-blasting of the interior of the building (why let Bobby, Billy & Kathleen have all the fun?) while finding plays for the coming year and ... and ... trying to find money for the next month's rent on our wonderful building. So with all that going on, I got a phone call from Bloom. Bloom telling me he had discovered a sketch comedy group with whom he wants to create a new musical revue that we can run as an 11:00 show  ... a simple cabaret, no set, just a bunch of props - Ken will direct and it'll cost us next to nothing (which was a damn good thing because that's about all we had in our checking accounting at that time.) 

 

INSERT PICTURE: Tim in the NPT office around 1980

 

"They are real good at comic improv and this guy Grundmann is a great pianist and he writes clever songs." Okay, maybe those weren't Bloom's exact words, but I remember that he was unusually enthusiastic about the talent he had discovered.

So, I figure, a simple late night comedy revue ... they have their own props and costumes ... how hard could it be?

 

Well, it wasn't hard at all ... except for the fact that Ken had assumed they had hours of songs and comic material when, in fact, they had about 20 minutes worth. But hey ... it was only the end of June. There's all of July to put together a show to open in August ... and they did.

 

INSERT PICTURE: SIROCCO PROMO HANDBILL

 

Eventually, MAMA OF THE YEAR closed as scheduled, the musical got canceled due to our lack of funds (sorry John & Nikki,) the comedy revue was given the 8:00 time slot and it was slated to open in August. Which it did ... on Friday the 13th ... to outrageously great newspaper notices. The title of the show, I believe, was a nod to Sir Noel Coward.

SIROCCO

The hot new musical revue

Music & lyrics by Tim Grundmann

comedy sketches by Tim Grundmann & Ken Bloom - improvisations by the company

Directed by Ken Bloom

THE COMPANY: Tim Grundmann, A. David Johnson, Dawn Leland, Hunt Meadows, Jeff Moreland, Tanis Roach and J. Fred Shiffman

AD / Stage Manager: Dawn Leland

August 13 – October 10, 1976 [20 performances]

*

BRIDE OF SIROCCO

The NEW hot new musical revue

songs and comedy sketches by Tim Grundmann

With improvisations by the company

Directed by Ken Bloom / Musical Direction by Tim Grundmann

THE COMPANY: Tim Grundmann, Tanis Roach, J. Fred Shiffman,

Dana Vance & A. David Johnson

Understudies for the West End Theatre run – Jim Humphrey and Bari Biern

Production Stage Managers: Dawn Leland / Tom Welsh

Set by Russell Metheny – Lighting by William Turnbull, Jr. – Costumes by Mary Kay McGregor

December 29, 1976 – March 5, 1977 [32 performance]

March 29 – May 1, 1977 [35 performances at The West End Theatre]

*

*PHOTOS BELOW (by Richard L. Haight) Are from the West End Theatre Extended Run of "BRIDE"*

 

SIDEBAR: Even before BRIDE closed, Ken and I talked with Tim ... "What do you want to do next?" Ken suggested Tim tackle a book musical. We scheduled it to open in December ... Tim would do the book, music and lyrics, Ken would direct and Russell would do the scenery ... all be needed was a script. But hey, it was March ... weeks to go before we would open December 14th, right?ox >>

NIGHTMARE!! (1977)

Book, music & lyrics by Tim Grundmann

Directed by Ken Bloom / Musical Direction by Tim Grundmann

THE COMPANY: Debra Cerruit, Gardner Hathaway, A. David Johnson, Chris Kauffmann, Barbara Rappaport, Tanis Roach & J. Fred Shiffman

Set by Russell Metheny - Lighting by Tomm Tomlinson - Costumes by Mary Kay McGregor

Production Stage Managers: Sharon Obuchowski / LuAnne P. Origer

December 14, 1977 – January 15, 1978 [24 performances]

April 5 – April 30, 1978 [19 performances]

*

OUT TO LUNCH

Book, music & lyrics by Tim Grundmann

Directed by Ken Bloom / Musical Direction by Tim Grundmann

Choreography by Anne Reynolds Day

THE COMPANY: John Healey, Jr., A. David Johnson, Stuart Lerch, Jay Morse, Barbara Rappaport, Tanis Roach, J. Fred Shiffman, Dana Vance

Musicians: Tim Grundmann on piano, and Bob Rayel on percussion and alternating on bass were Mary Scott & Gary Starr

Set by Kit Grover – Lighting by Tomm Tomlinson – Costumes by Richard Dwight McGee - Wigs by Nicholas Polycroni

Stage Manager – LuAnne P. Origer

July 7 – September 2, 1978 [36 performances]

EDDIE’S CATCHY TUNES

Book, music & lyrics by Tim Grundmann

Directed by Ken Bloom / Musical Direction by Tim Grundmann

THE COMPANY: Agnes Cummings, Donald F. Campbell, Gay Gibson Cima, T. J. Finkbinder, Tonette Hartman, A. David Johnson, Jay Morse, Barbara Rappaport, Holly Reich, Tanis Roach, J. Fred Shiffman, Dana Vance, Richard White, Bill Whitman, Jim Wilder

Choreography by Anne Reynolds Day

Assistant Director – Robbie McEwen

Set by Russell Metheny - Lighting by Tomm Tomlinson - Costumes by Peter J. Zakutansky - Special Large Properties & Costume Pieces by Ingrid Crepeau - Wigs by Nicholas J. Polychroni

Production Stage Manager – Mary Charles McNeill

MUSICIANS: Tim Grundmann - piano/ Bob Rayel - percussion & Sulwan Yacuby - Bass

STAFF: Technical Director - Robert Marietta / Asst. Stg. Mrg & Properties - Jim Wilder / Board Op - Kenny McCauley / Run Crew & Spot Ops - Katie Helene, Lisa Lias, Kathy Plowitz & Paul Donnelly, Jr.

April 4 – June 17, 1979 [39 performances]

DEAR DESPERATE

Book, music & lyrics by Tim Grundmann

Directed by Harry M. Bagdasian / Musical Direction by Tim Grundmann

THE COMPANY: Wayne Anderson, Mark J. Donahue, Frank Edwards, Amelia Estin, James Festa, Tonette Hartmann, Porter Koontz, Mary Ann Nichols, Nick Olcott, Barbara Rappaport, Cornelia Ravenal, Tanis Roach, Steve Skardon, Valerie Stanislawczyk, Richard Tappen, Michael Willis

MUSICIANS: Bob David & Adrienne King on piano; Mary Scott on bass

Musical Staging by Robert Sacelli

Dramaturg Lloyd Rose

Set by Russell Metheny – Lighting by Allen Lee Hughes – Costumes by Peter J. Zakutansky

Production Stage Manager Pat Cochran

January 23 – April 11, 1981 [49 performances]

NIGHTMARE!! (1981 revival & revision)

Book, music & lyrics by Tim Grundmann

Directed by Ken Bloom / Musical Direction by Tim Grundmann

THE COMPANY: Anthony “Chip” Brienza, Juli Cooper, Dan Curry, Amelia Estin, Barbara Rappaport, Tanis Roach, J. Fred Shiffman, Frederick Stewart

MUSICIANS: Tim Grundmann, piano; Roger Lovett, percussion; Bill Moran or Ward Harris on bass

Assistant Director: Robbie McEwen

Choreography by Anne Reynolds Day

Set by Russell Metheny, Lighting by Richard Moore, Costumes by Henry Carter Shaffer

Production Stage Manager: Pat Cochran

July 22 – October 5, 1981 [53 performances]

GROWNUPS Comic Sketches by Tim Grundmann

(partially developed from improvisations by Shiffman and Vance)

Directed by Tim Grundmann

THE COMPANY: Tim Grundmann, J. Fred Shiffman, Dana Vance

Piano: Tim Grundmann

Production Stage Manager: LuAnne P. Origer

July 13 – September 8, 1979 [20 performances]

 *

AN EVENING WITHOUT LIZA MINNELLI

Comic Sketches by Tim Grundmann

(partially developed from improvisations by Shiffman and Vance)

Directed by Tim Grundmann

Set by Russell Metheny – Lighting by Robert Marietta – Costumes by Willy Richardson

THE COMPANY: Tim Grundmann, J. Fred Shiffman, Dana Vance

Piano: Tim Grundmann

Production Stage Manager: LuAnne P. Origer

December 14 – 31, 1979 [21 performances]

January 25 – March ? 1980  [33 performances at Plays & Players Theatre & Annenberg Center, Phil. PA]

LIVES OF THE GREAT COMPOSERS

Four one-act comedies by Tim Grundmann

“Beethoven: Fur Elise” / “Bach: I Love Anna Magdalena”

"Mozart Tonight” / “Brahams: The Hollywood Treatment”

Directed by Ken Bloom

THE COMPANY: Bari Biern, Jim Humphrey, Steven LeBlanc, Tanis Roach Scott Sedar

Assistant Director: Robbie McEwen

Set by Lewis Folden – Lighting by Jim Hobbs – Costumes by Mary Ann Powell

Production Stage Manager: James Sears

MUSICIAN: Ed Rejuney on piano

STAFF: Production Manager - Tom Moseman / Technical Director - James S. Katen / Props - David Dunn Nauer / Electrician - Spence Ball / Board Op - Susan Munson / Floor Manager - Jim Wilder / Asst. Floor Manager - Paul Mannix / Follow Spots - Jim Parker & Katie Helene / Wardrobe - Maryclare Gromet / Carpenters - Neil Wilson & David Worley / Scenic Artist - Susan MacMurdy / Poster by Dan Sherbo / Emma Goldman - Jim Katen (neither appeared in the show, but Jim asked for that credit in the program and Ken Bloom, being the nice guy that he is, gave Jim such a listing.)

February 27 – March 28, 1982 [31 performances]

THE NEW, IMPROVED, BRIDE OF SIROCCO

(or The Texas Chain Saw Musical)

a musical revue by Tim Grundmann

Directed by Harry M. Bagdasian / Musical Direction by Tim Grundmann

Choreographer: Anne Reynolds Day

Assistant Director: Robbie McEwen

Production Stage Manager: Jim Wilder

THE COMPANY: Steven LeBlanc, Diana Ridge, Yeardley Smith, Caron Tate, Chuck Tobin

MUSICIANS: Tim Grundmann on piano, Bob Rayel on percussion

Set by Lewis Folden – Lighting by Richard Moore – Costumes by Maryclare Gromet

Master Electrician - Morris Cooperman / Followspot Op - Brian Nelson

Asst. Stage Manager - Christie Ames / Properties - Deborah Glassberg

July 7 – August 15, 1982 [36 performances]

*

 

Thanks Tim - Good Times!

*

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