Friday, February 6, 2009

A problem like Blagojevich

Rod Blagojevich Superstar - the title alone makes me laugh.

Chicago's famed Second City comedy troupe has written a rock opera about the disgraced former governor of Illinois, under indictment for allegedly trying to sell President Barack Obama's Senate seat to the highest bidder.

I heard about it on NPR yesterday and I loved this quote: "Like all great theatrical ideas, Rod Blagojevich Superstar started with drinking," says Kelly Leonard, one of the show's creators. Well, I'm sure there some great theatrical ideas that didn't start with drinking - at least one or two anyway.

But somehow this seems fitting. Blago does have a flair for the dramatic - the way he jetted off to New York for television interviews while his impeachment trial was under way in Springfield, his comment that he looked to Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela and Gandhi for inspiration because they know the trouble he's seen.

And from Fiorello to Frost/Nixon, politicians have made good theatre.

The show opens on Tuesday but previews have already started. Some of the ex-governor's former staffers have seen it. They loved it so much, they stayed afterward to offer advice to the cast: "apparently our Rod doesn't swear enough."

Leonard told NPR that he's confident Blagojevich will be in the audience at some point. "As weird as that sounds, it feels to us like he's the type of guy who would come to the show, laugh his head off and go backstage for a photo op with the cast."


Amanda said...

How funny! I wonder what Blagojevich will think if he sees it.

Esther said...

Oh, from everything I've seen and read, he'll probably love the attention!

Steve On Broadway (SOB) said...

Haven't the people of Illinois suffered enough?!

Esther said...

Good point, Steve. But as someone who lives in a state where more than one elected official has wound up behind bars, I say sometimes you have to laugh through your tears! ;-)