RED BANK - Actor Joel Grey, best known for his Oscar-winning performance as the emcee in the movie "Cabaret" and for playing the wizard in "Wicked" on Broadway, is focused now on his directing career.

Grey is working in the Garden State, directing the play "On Borrowed Time" at Two River Theatre in Red Bank.

The fantasy drama set in the 1930s, is about a little boy and his grandfather, who is determined to cheat death to keep his fragile family together. For Grey the play has special meaning. He played the part of the little boy in a production of the play 72 years ago. He says it was the pivotal moment of his life. "I've sort of carried what I learned at nine all the way through my life," Grey says.

Grey says his work on the play as a child inspired his commitment to the profession. "I was captivated by everything in the theatre and still am," he says.

"On Borrowed Time" opens tonight at Two River Theater in Red Bank and runs through Oct. 13.