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Spalding Gray

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ENTERTAINMENT
July 10, 1992 | PETER RAINER, TIMES STAFF WRITER
To call Spalding Gray's autobiographical monologues self-indulgent is to underscore the obvious. A better question would be: Is Gray worth indulging? In "Monster in a Box," Gray presents us with his first filmed monologue since his celebrated 1987 "Swimming to Cambodia." Like that film, "Monster" (at the Hillcrest Cinemas) takes place on a spotlighted stage with a table and a chair and not much else.
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ENTERTAINMENT
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ENTERTAINMENT
January 8, 1988 | DAN SULLIVAN, Times Theater Critic
Spalding Gray, who usually talks about himself (as in "Swimming to Cambodia"), will be in residence at Taper, Too for the next couple of weeks talking to other people. There will be a new batch of them every night. The idea of "L.A. The Other, Conversations With . . . " is to have Gray sit down with local people who aren't famous and who don't have a movie to plug, the object being to get a handle on the real Los Angeles, as opposed to "Hollywood."
NEWS
June 8, 2006 | Greg Braxton, Times Staff Writer
MORE than two years have passed since the death of acclaimed monologuist and storyteller Spalding Gray, but his widow, Kathleen Russo, says she is still surrounded by his voice. It is the sound of Gray's good friends and colleagues speaking his words. With the help of celebrities such as Teri Garr, Loudon Wainwright III, Margaret Cho, Tony Shalhoub, John C.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 9, 2004 | Elaine Woo, Times Staff Writer
Spalding Gray, the masterful monologuist of "Swimming to Cambodia" fame, who turned his darkest fears about life and death into riveting one-man theater pieces that defined the genre, was confirmed dead Monday when a body found in the East River in New York City was identified as his. He was 62. Gray, who lived on Long Island but kept an apartment in New York City, was reported missing by his wife, Kathleen Russo, on Jan.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 31, 1989 | DON SHIRLEY
"Everyone has a story," says raconteur Spalding Gray near the end of "Old Wise Tales" (tonight at 10:30 on Channel 28). So why don't we hear more of them? We hear snippets of folk wisdom from the group of old-timers Gray found at a senior center in the Fairfax District, but we hear no particularly engaging tales. Some of the folk wisdom is phrased colorfully, but much of it is very bland--the sort of thoughts that might stray through the head of any reasonably happy person. For the most part, these people do seem quite happy, and it's nice to hear that old age isn't necessarily a bitter pill.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 10, 1987 | SYLVIE DRAKE, Times Theater Writer
In the beginning was the word and the word was hope . "Welcome to what I hope will be a personal history of the Mark Taper Forum," said monologuist Spalding Gray, as he greeted Wednesday's packed house from the Taper stage. (It was furnished with two mikes and two brown leather arm-chairs, emblematic of Gray's one-on-one impromptu monologue/interviews.) Indeed, things got off to a promising start, but they didn't stay that way.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 11, 1990 | HILARY De VRIES
There seems to be some dissonance from a corner of the avant-garde. "Narcissism?! It's taken such a bad rap. There are very positive aspects of narcissism." Monologuist Spalding Gray, the self-described "raving talking head," creator of more than a dozen one-person performance narratives, including "Swimming to Cambodia," which was made into a 1987 film, is talking about talking about himself. Querulously. "No, I think people are interested in a person, a man talking about his life," he says.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 17, 1994
In his tale of an eye operation and the events leading up to it, actor Spalding Gray's latest monologue "Gray's Anatomy"--his 14th--continues his tradition of turning the particulars of his own life into epic storytelling. Beginning this week, the 52-year-old actor best known for his monologues-turned-films "Swimming to Cambodia" (1987) and "Monster in a Box" (1992) brings "Gray's Anatomy" to Los Angeles, Santa Barbara and Irvine.
NEWS
June 8, 2006 | Greg Braxton, Times Staff Writer
MORE than two years have passed since the death of acclaimed monologuist and storyteller Spalding Gray, but his widow, Kathleen Russo, says she is still surrounded by his voice. It is the sound of Gray's good friends and colleagues speaking his words. With the help of celebrities such as Teri Garr, Loudon Wainwright III, Margaret Cho, Tony Shalhoub, John C.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 20, 2005 | By Rick Cleveland, Special to The Times
When I was a kid, I lied a lot. Lying, for me, was easier than learning to tie my shoes. I could tell lies like my best friend, Dave, could eat French fries — by the fistful. When I was in junior high school, I used to cut class and take the bus downtown to watch movies in the big, old, rat-infested theaters. If you were a kid you could get into R-rated movies, no problem, as long as you paid. My classmates liked to hear my renditions of those movies, in all their gory detail. "Deliverance," "The Godfather" and "Walking Tall" went over especially well.
MAGAZINE
July 25, 2004 | E.D. Maytum, E.D. Maytum last wrote for the magazine a spoof on advice columns.
Spalding Gray felt regret. Could it have been fatal? In February of 2002, two years before his suicide, I spoke with him on the occasion of an anniversary engagement, hosted by UCLA Live, of his monologue "Swimming to Cambodia." His work was of interest to me since I was a teen when I saw him perform "Sex and Death to the Age 14." We shared a Rhode Island pedigree, and his stories of growing up in New England achieved a measure of timeless verisimilitude that impresses to this day.
ENTERTAINMENT
May 14, 2004 | Brett Brune, Times Staff Writer
The Monologuist is dead. Long live the Monologuist! Spalding Gray, the king of modern storytelling, deserves such a send-off. As his closest friends prepare to gather Saturday in Sag Harbor, N.Y., for his final memorial service, those of us who affectionately remember his work on the West Coast must also pay homage to the lone wolf howling out the truth that was Gray on stage. I remember his work well, from the perspective of a student at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur in the spring of 1993.
NEWS
March 11, 2004 | Scott Timberg, Times Staff Writer
Spalding Gray, the New York-based monologuist whose January disappearance was confirmed Monday as a suicide, left his mark on a wide range of performers, many of whom cite him as a stimulus to their own solo work. In interviews this week, these actors pointed to the simplicity of Gray's staging, his matter-of-fact delivery and his acute sense of self.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
March 9, 2004 | Elaine Woo, Times Staff Writer
Spalding Gray, the masterful monologuist of "Swimming to Cambodia" fame, who turned his darkest fears about life and death into riveting one-man theater pieces that defined the genre, was confirmed dead Monday when a body found in the East River in New York City was identified as his. He was 62. Gray, who lived on Long Island but kept an apartment in New York City, was reported missing by his wife, Kathleen Russo, on Jan.
NATIONAL
January 17, 2004 | Josh Getlin, Times Staff Writer
Spalding Gray, an aristocratic-looking actor and writer best known for monologues such as "Swimming to Cambodia" and "Gray's Anatomy," has been missing from his New York home for seven days -- and family members feared the worst on Friday, given his bouts with depression and two suicide attempts. Gray, 62, was supposed to visit a friend in Manhattan on Jan. 10 and board a flight to Denver the next day for a ski trip.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 15, 1999 | MICHAEL PHILLIPS, TIMES THEATER CRITIC
Cockeyed pessimist, the ultimate niche marketer, Spalding Gray has made what he acknowledges in the new "Morning, Noon and Night" as a "good living" doing what he does. That is, through sheer hyperbolic, often riotous self-obsession; through living a little, often recklessly, and then talking about it a lot. Not to say Gray isn't also trying to make some sense of the world around him.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 11, 1999 | PAUL LIEBERMAN, Paul Lieberman is a Times staff writer
Over the last two decades, Spalding Gray insisted more than once that he was on the brink of getting out of the monologue biz. Usually, he cited the simple fatigue, physical and mental, of turning them out one after another, taking the stage night after night, behind that lonely table, to perform "Swimming to Cambodia," "Monster in a Box" and the like.
MAGAZINE
June 9, 2002 | E.D. MAYTUM
Spalding Gray feels regret. He says this on a breezy spring afternoon while having lunch outside Figtree's Cafe at Venice Beach. Gray, the 61-year-old actor and monologuist, has come to Los Angeles to perform and, as always, he is drawn to the sea because it relaxes him and provides an opportunity to walk rather than drive. He prefers a pedestrian perspective.
NEWS
February 21, 2002 | DON SHIRLEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Before Tuesday, Spalding Gray had not performed his most famous monologue, "Swimming to Cambodia," since the late '80s. And it showed. At UCLA's Freud Playhouse Tuesday, Gray groped his way through the text almost as if he hadn't looked at it, even for a quick review. His delivery was swimming in hesitation, marked by "uh"s and stammering sounds. At times, he appeared to be flipping through the pages, editing as he went.
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