Comedy troupe blends politics, music, satireAnyone who thinks there’s no humor in politics has yet to see the Capitol Steps.
Anyone who thinks there’s no humor in politics has yet to see the Capitol Steps.
A comedy troupe founded 30 years ago by congressional staffers, the Capitol Steps take a timely look at the political scene through satire and an appreciation of the ridiculous.
The company will perform at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Sept. 29 at the Sheldon Theatre.
“The show is always full of sight gags,” wrote the Washington Post in a December 2011 article recognizing the troupe for 30 years of staying “right on top of the latest news, scandals, pols and polls.”
Antics and skits are likely to feature cheap wigs, fake dynamite — even man-eating sharks and an “Octomom” giving birth.
“The Capitol Steps plan to bring down the House … and Senate,” the troupe warns. “This performance can proudly claim to be the only place in America where you will find the two candidates running for president onstage singing show tunes.”
The troupe recorded 32 albums, including its latest: “Take the Money and Run for President,” and a special holiday release, “Barackin’ Around the Christmas Tree.”
The Capitol Steps troupe was born in December 1981 when some staffers for Sen. Charles Percy were in charge of entertainment for a Christmas party.
“Their first idea was to stage a Nativity play,” according to the troupe’s Website, “but in the whole Congress they couldn’t find three wise men or a virgin.” Instead they dug into headlines of the day and created song parodies and satirical skits.
Not all of the current members are former Capitol Hill staffers, but the cast does represent 18 congressional offices and 62 years of collective staff experience. Skits and songs tackle both sides of the political scene.
The troupe has been featured on all major television networks and can be heard four times a year on National Public Radio stations nationwide. Based in Washington, D.C., members have performed in all 50 states and a half-dozen countries.
“The material is updated constantly,” spokesmen said. Current examples include songs about Mitt Romney’s plea to the GOP, “Help Me Fake It to the Right,” and President Obama’s class warfare, “If I Tax a Rich Man.”
Former President George H.W. Bush was quoted as saying, “The Capitol Steps make it easier to leave public life.”
Bringing the East Coast comedy troupe to Red Wing is part of the Sheldon Theatre’s effort to offer not only a wide variety of performances, but also to embrace world-class talent “so people don’t have to drive to see really good music and theater and dance and comedy,” Sheldon Director Sean Dowse said.
For more information or to order tickets to the Red Wing performances, stop by the Sheldon in downtown Red Wing or call 651-388-8700 or 800-899-5759. Tickets also may be ordered online at www.sheldontheatre.org. Internet fees may apply.
If you go...
Who: The Capitol Steps
What: Political satire
When: 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. Sept. 29
Where: Sheldon Theatre
Cost: $32.50 adults, $20.50 students
More info: 651-388-8700 or www.sheldontheatre.org