Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

With Blago Gone, Blago Impersonators Thrive

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Rod Blagojevich once worked as an Elvis impersonator, singing “Treat Me Nice” at a block party. But in Blago’s hometown, in 2012, Rod Blagojevich impersonators get a lot more attention. The Second City staged a revue titled Rod Blagojevich, Superstar. And now the Athenaeum Theater is following that with a full-length play, Blagojevich! Blagojevich!, which will premier Sept. 7.

    Here’s a description:

    Inspired by the true story of Governor Rod Blagojevich’s fall from grace, Blagojevich, Blagojevich! is a fast paced satirical romp through Blago’s private crusade for freedom. Get ready to jump into a day in the life of Governor Rod with Elvis, Tricky Dick Nixon, and others on a pill popping dream trip. Michael K. Feinstein has penned an imaginatively written comedy that takes us into the home and mind of one of Illinois’ most recent infamous icons.

    The play stars Darren Stephens, whose Blagojevich impersonation goes beyond donning a black wig, and truly captures Blago’s breathless fatuousness. You can see Stephens here, in character on Fox Chicago Sunday.

    Until we get the real Blago back, in 2023 or 2024, Blago impersonators are all we have of our ex-governor.  

    This month, Ward Room blogger Edward McClelland’s Young Mr. Obama: Chicago and the Making of a Black President will be available on Kindle for $2.99. Tracing Obama’s career in Chicago from his arrival as a community organizer to his election to the U.S. Senate, Young Mr. Obama tells the story of how a callow, presumptuous young man became a master politician, and of why only Chicago could have produced our first black president.