Say Goodnight, Gracie

The Longest Running Play of The 2002-2003 Season.Tony award-nominated for Best Play 2003.

It’s official! “SAY GOODNIGHT, GRACIE” is, now and for all time, the longest-running play of the 2002-2003 Broadway season. It has also now become the third longest-running “one-actor play” in Broadway history, exceeded only by “Defending the Caveman” and Lily Tomlin’s “Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe.”

“GRACIE” and its playwright Rupert Holmes have been honored by a BEST PLAY 2003 Tony nomination, the fourth time Holmes has been nominated, previously winning Tony Awards for Best Book, Best Music, and Best Lyrics for a Musical.
For his astounding portrayal of comedian George Burns, star Frank Gorshin received an Outer Critics Circle Award, which accompanies his Carbonell Award for Best Actor. Holmes and “GRACIE” also received this honor from the drama critics of Florida where the play was first seen. Since its Broadway debut in 2002, “SAY GOODNIGHT, GRACIE” has been performed to critical acclaim, sold-out houses, and an unbroken chain of standing ovations. Delighted audiences are responding with waves of warm laughter and the occasional tear.

In 2004, when illness sidelined Frank Gorshin for two months, actor Jamie Farr (best known to millions as Corporal Klinger on the television classic “M*A*S*H”) stepped out of his TV character’s high heels and into the shoes of George Burns, earning accolades and standing ovations night after night.

As he did on Broadway, the wonderful actor Joel Rooks covered the role for Frank Gorshin on its national tour, and appeared in a majority of the play’s performances during its run in Chicago.

In 2005, Frank returned to the role he originated and continued the national tour of “GRACIE” virtually until his unfortunate demise in May of the same year.

One point of interest that has gone unnoticed so far is that the original musical underscore for “GRACIE” is composed and arranged by Rupert Holmes, with vocal performances by Teressa Esposito Jennings. The voice of Gracie is skillfully and sensitively supplied by actress Didi Conn (“Frenchy” in the movie GREASE and the star of YOU LIGHT UP MY LIFE).

Say Goodnight Gracie is licensed by William Franzblau

About The Show

The Life, Laughter and Love of George Burns & Gracie Allen

Say Goodnight Gracie is the hit Broadway play that invites you to spend a hilarious, heart-warming evening in the uplifting company of the world’s favorite and funniest centenarian. George Burns, who spanned one hundred years of American entertainment history, is now miraculously alive and kicking in a stunning tour de force. Say Goodnight Gracie was Broadway’s third longest running solo performance show and was nominated for a 2003 Tony Award for BEST PLAY and won the 2003-04 National Broadway Theatre Award for BEST PLAY.

In Say Goodnight Gracie, we discover George in limbo between this world and the next, unable to join his beloved wife and partner Gracie Allen until he gives the Command Performance of his lifetime for God. He looks back upon his impoverished, plucky youth on the lower East Side of New York… his disastrous but tenacious career in Vaudeville … the momentous day when he meet a fabulously talented young Irish girl named Grace Ethel Cecile Rosalie Allen … their instant chemistry, with his flawless timing a perfect mate to her dizzy delivery … his wooing of her, their marriage and their rise to the pinnacles of Vaudeville, Movies, Radio and Television. Gracie’s demise forced George to start from square one in life and in his career, eventually achieving an equal level of success as a solo raconteur and Academy Award-winning actor, portraying everything from a Sunshine Boy to, oh, God.



“BEST PLAY 2004”
National Broadway Theatre Award from The League of Theatres and Producers
“BEST PLAY 2003”
Tony Award Nomination
“Rupert Holmes’ touching and hilarious play is a showcase for an era!”
“You’ll be in heaven yourself, at least for an hour and a half!”
“Rupert Holmes’ endearing play is a journey into the past you’ll find irresistible!”
“George Burns comes alive again for ninety wonderful, endearing minutes! I STRONGLY RECOMMEND IT!”
“A lovable and solidly-constructed bioplay by playwright Rupert Holmes!”
“Frank Gorshin, playwright Rupert Holmes and director John Tillinger make a brilliant team! A genuine surprise of the new Broadway season: it’s good! Really, really good!!
“There’s authentic magic in this lovable show biz valentine! Viewers are going to be much happier people for seeing it! VERY, VERY FUNNY!”
“The neatly written script by Rupert Holmes is a pleasant, poignant, endearing stroll, through the life and times of George Burns!
“BRILLIANT! See SAY GOODNIGHT, GRACIE as fast as you can!”
“Burns’ comedy was of the understated, subtle variety, and so is the humor in ‘SAY GOODNIGHT GRACIE’ which succeeds because Holmes’ book is so well-crafted.”