What would you do in pursuit of the American dream?
Dead Presidents will be revived this weekend on the Nancy Marine Studio Theatre Stage as nine assassins and would-be assassins tell their tales of how they were cheated of the American dream. “Everybody’s got the right to be happy,” right? Forgetting that it is only the pursuit of happiness that is guaranteed in The Constitution–and not happiness itself–these damaged souls seek their solution with a gun.
It’s a hallucinatory trip, at times, like the carnival game that opens the show, offering contestants the opportunity to shoot a President. Or when the assassins beseech Lee Harvey Oswald to make history for the benefit of all of them. The timeline isn’t linear, but that’s not the point. It’s this portrayal of these outliers in a non-judgmental manner, exposing instead the American tradition of using violent force–most often, with guns–to right perceived wrongs in the pursuit of a dream that doesn’t exist at all. This may not seem like the typical fodder of the musical genre, and that’s what makes this show so exceptional.
The Desultory Theatre’s Club’s own, Keith Paul, will don his actor’s cap for the role of President James Garfield and then some… in this highly anticipated revival. If you’ve never seen him perform before, you’re in for a treat! (And if you have, you’re still in for a treat…you just already know to expect a stellar portrayal!) He truly is a Renaissance man.
Catch Assassins at The Warner Theatre’s Nancy Marine Studio Theatre from September 26, 2015 through October 4, 2015.
Tickets can be purchased online or at the box office. This musical contains strong language and adult situations; it may not be suitable for all audiences.
Music and Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Book by John Weidman
Director: Katherine Ray
Music Director: Dan Koch
*all photos used with permission from The Warner Theatre