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  Rod Blagojevich Superstar! at Chicago Shakespeare Theater

Rod Blagojevich Superstar!

Chicago Shakespeare Theater
800 East Grand Avenue Chicago

Politics and parody take center stage Upstairs at Chicago Shakespeare with the Second City’s rollicking musical parody of the rise and fall of ex-Governor Rod Blagojevich. Following a sold out run at Second City e.t.c., the limited engagement on Navy Pier will feature new music and frequent updates—incorporating Blagojevich’s brother, his $100,000 book deal and Roland Burris’s son—as the Illinois political saga continues to unfold. After each performance, the cast will improvise a 20-minute political comedy set based on audience suggestions.

Presented by The Second City

Thru - Sep 6, 2009

Thursdays: 7:30pm
Fridays: 7:30pm
Saturdays: 3pm & 7pm & 9:30pm
Sundays: 3pm

Price: $25

Show Type: Improv

Box Office: 312-595-5600

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  Rod Blagojevich Superstar! Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Tribune - Recommended

"...the real growth in this show has come from Joey Bland, initially a somewhat hesitant Blago but now a richly textured egomaniac with, crucially, a likable emotional center that goes some way—nothing could go all the way—to explain how this allegedly corrupt pol was twice elected by the people of Illinois."
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Chris Jones

Chicago Sun Times - Highly Recommended

"...The references are savvy throughout, with mentions of "free dinners" at Gibsons Steakhouse, the dreariness of Springfield, the Anthony Rezko connection and even nutty flappings by a cardinal, the state bird of Illinois. A song called "Pay to Play" gets the full vaudeville treatment. But as we well know, a chorus line of stars from here, to Wall Street, to Washington, D.C., and back could easily be cast in that kind of production number."

Hedy Weiss

Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...this musical by Ed Furman (book) and T.J. Shanoff (music and lyrics) achieves preposterous grandiosity even by Blago standards, amplifying the already well-known highlights of his doomed career--the scrappy-son-of-immigrants backstory, the betrayal of mentor and father-in-law Dick Mell, the potty-mouthed wife, the revered hair brush--and setting them to a schmaltzy faux-Andrew Lloyd Webber score. Under Matt Hovde's snappy direction this inspired mix of wit, vulgarity, sophistication, and cheese is mean, biting, and hilarious."

Justin Hayford

Examiner - Highly Recommended

"...It’s not easy, crafting an original comedy around a guy who is already a walking punch line. Truly, how many times can you make fun of Rod Blagojevich’s flowing raven tresses and mind-blowing Messiah complex before the jokes become stale? As it turns out, there’s still plenty of mileage in the disgraced former Illinois Governor. Or at least there is Second City’s musical version Blago’s life and twisted times. With Rod Blagojevich, Superstar, the man who would be Gandhi (and Jesus, and King) proves to be a comedic the gift that keeps on giving."
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Catey Sullivan

Copley News Service - Somewhat Recommended

"...Rod Blagojevich Superstar” may be a work in progress that will improve as the performers settle more comfortably into their roles and especially if the author and composer can upgrade the book and score. But the subject matter has a limited shelf life. Blagojevich is hot news right now, but will prospective audiences still care as much in a few weeks?"

Dan Zeff

Chicago Stage Review - Highly Recommended

"...Rod Blagojevich Superstar! bares its fangs at the Blagojeviches, machine politics, and flower-child musical theatre. It may not chew ‘em up and spit ‘em out, but it’s got teeth. And keep an eye on Lori McClain, as you may be watching a star of tomorrow today."
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J. Scott Hill

Chicago Stage Standard - Highly Recommended

"...The 'scrappy' cast is a little rough around the edges but all is forgiven as the timeliness of this 'expiration dated' material demands that it hit the boards ASAP. And what the truly loveable ensemble lacks in singing chops and perfectly polished scenes, they more than make up for with enthusiasm, subtle charm and explosively hysterical comic timing. Lori McClain is particularly sidesplitting as Patti Blagojevich."

Venus Zarris

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