Broadway Salutes Kevin Gray

Kevin Gray — a very talented member of Staples Players in the 1970s, who became the youngest actor to play the lead role in “Phantom of the Opera,” and acted in or directed more than 150 productions — died in February 2013, of a massive heart attack. He was 55.

Kevin Gray and Dodie Pettit.

Kevin Gray and Dodie Pettit.

Kevin met his wife, Dodie Pettit, in “Phantom.” She starred in “Cats” on Broadway, and worked with Staples Players in a summer production of that show.

For the past 15 months, she has been recording a tribute CD for Kevin. She gathered over 170 Broadway singers, including 10 from the “Phantom” cast, 3 Tony Award winners, and cast members from “Miss Saigon,” “The King and I,” “Titanic,” “Jekyll and Hyde” and more. Each had a personal connection to Kevin and Dodie. All donated their talent.

Westport is well represented, by Terry Eldh, Adam Riegler, Paul McKibbins, and of course Dodie.

Westport was an integral part of Kevin’s life. He was born and raised here. He attended Westport schools. Dodie still lives in the town he loved.

So she is particularly proud that the CD will be showcased for the 1st time on WWPT-FM (90.3). This Saturday (May 30, 4-5 p.m.), the Staples High School radio station will play songs during the “Adam and George” show.

Dodie will chat about the CD, and performers will call in to share their stories.

Kevin Gray CDAll proceeds go to scholarships in Kevin’s name, at his alma mater Duke University, and the University of Hartford’s Hartt School, where he taught (and where the Kevin Gray Foundation was organized by Westporters Peter Byrne and Jamie Wisser).

(Don’t live in the WWPT-FM listening area? No problem! Click here to listen to the livestream. The CD is available for sale on iTunes, Amazon and by clicking here).

5 responses to “Broadway Salutes Kevin Gray

  1. I hope to listen to the livestream on Saturday.
    Kevin was the most well-rounded person you could meet.
    From the sweet boy and neighbour in grade five at Coleytown Elementary, to the athlete (gymnastics captain) at Coleytown Jr. High, to the well-read, musician and actor at Staples… and the rest is, indeed, History.

  2. Terry brannigan

    Bravo

    Ps: Dodie you don’t know me but I saw you in Cats. Peter Neufeld was my Godfather and the house manager was a family friend who used to let me in!

  3. Kerry Foley

    This is a gorgeous compilation, honoring a wonderful man for a great cause. “Congratulations” seems not the right word, Dodie. But the project truly captures the love and admiration felt for Kevin. Our love to you.

  4. Just listened to the livestream! Thanks, Dan, otherwise I would have missed it!
    A beautiful, poignant, so important tribute to our friend, Kevin.