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The Boston Globe

Theater & art

‘Bridges of Madison County’ crosses over to musical stage

NEW YORK — Robert James Waller is all of three words into his novel “The Bridges of Madison County” when he mentions music.

“There are songs that come free from the blue-eyed grass, from the dust of a thousand country roads. This is one of them,” he writes, launching into the slender tale of a torrid love affair between Francesca Johnson, an Iowa farm wife, and Robert Kincaid, the mythic-heroic photographer who rolls up to her house in his pickup truck one August day in 1965, while her family is away. Waller’s book, published in 1992, was a huge bestseller, and when Clint Eastwood made it into a movie a few years later, he and Meryl Streep starred, slow-dancing in the soft light of Francesca’s kitchen to music from the radio.

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