On Air
Open In Popup
MPR News

Spalding Gray's stories live on through his wife

Share story

Spalding Gray
Spalding Gray at the Walker Art Center in 1983. He performed in Minneapolis regularly throughout his career. Now, six years after his death, his stories are back on stage at the Walker.
Image courtesy of the Walker Art Center

During his life, writer and performer Spalding Gray appeared regularly in the Twin Cities, bringing his autobiographical monologues to the Walker Art Center. 

Funny and disturbing, his pieces described his often ill-fated search for love, sex and happiness.  In 2004, Gray died -- apparently by suicide. 

Fans mourned his loss, but also the loss of his monologues. Many believed they could only be performed by Gray himself.

Gray's widow, Kathleen Russo, realized that didn't have to be the case. So she created a play called "Spalding Gray: Stories Left to Tell," in which five performers present Gray's life through his writing. 

The show runs at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis this Thursday through Saturday.  Each show features a local performer participating.

Thursday night, it's comedian Louie Anderson. Friday night, it's Minnesota Public Radio host Kerri Miller, and Saturday's performance features local writer Kevin Kling.

Kathleen Russo talked to MPR's Euan Kerr about why she decided to put the show together, and how it been a revelation for her.