'Undecided' takes no political prisoners

October 30, 1992|By Phil Greenfield | Phil Greenfield,Contributing writer

Political satire, from the cartoons of T. J. Nast and Herblock to the sophisticated ditties of Mark Russell, has helped America stomach many a grim election year. And, thanks to the Annapolis Theater Project, 1992 is no exception.

Conceived by Tom Magette and Morey Norkin, "Undecided" is a snappy review of songs and sketches that takes no political prisoners. George, Bill, Ross, "Bar," Hillary, Dan, Al, Tipper, Marilyn and our august Congress are poked, prodded, panned and pickled by a very funny succession of political parodies that use music from such sources as "Oklahoma," "Guys and Dolls," "Mame," "Evita," "Annie Get Your Gun" and "Pippin."

There are many hilarious moments. M. J. Rafalko is very funny whipping up a batch of Hillary Clinton's "rejuvenated Democratic not too liberal chocolate chip cookies" as she bemoans her bad press a la Mame. ("Was I too much like a male . . . Well, I learned that at Yale.")

Duncan Hood is a scream as Perot/Evita in his "Don't Cry for Me Bush and Clinton." With his ears, he looks ready to reduce the deficit on the planet Vulcan.

Tom Magette is a howl singing the Bill Clinton medley ("To All the Girls I've Loved Before," "Back in the U.S.S.R.," etc.), and there is a hilarious scene in which Morey Norkin's George Bush tells Dan Quayle (played by 13-year-old Matt Garrity) that he's off the ticket. ("You spell potatoe and I get embarrassed; You fight with Murphy and just get harassed.")

There is a cute "Family Feud" sketch, and Sally Gilles is a riot as Barbara Bush, complete with pearls the size of dinosaur eggs.

A few things didn't quite work. The "Chat With Bill Clinton" (it's actually Hillary) fell flat, and a few of the songs were sung too quickly for the clever lyrics to sink in. And the lighting in the opening number was disorganized enough to have been designed by the current administration's domestic policy team.

But the AACC Humanities Lecture Hall is where all voters should be this Friday or Saturday at 8 p.m. For there is no antidote to the political blahs quite like the laughter of free people.

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