The popular “Gridiron” parody returns to Oklahoma City’s Stage Center on Feb. 20, 22 and 23. With presidential and state legislative politics permeating the air, the title of this year’s show is appropriate: “Sure — You Want My Vote Now, But will You Still Respect Me In The Morning?” Tickets are now on sale for the comedic review of 2007-08.
Since 1928, Oklahoma City journalists and their associates have performed the annual "Gridiron" — a broad roast of national, state and local politics, politicians and culture. For the last two decades, proceeds from the show have gone to the Gridiron Foundation, which disburses scholarships to Oklahomans preparing for careers in journalism.
Last year’s successful production team is collaborating again, with television journalist Andrew Harris as director of the Federal Act, and educator Dana Meister in charge of the State Act. Susan LaVictoire, a past Club president, is producer of the show, and another past president, Bob Hale, served as head author.
Larry Pierce returns as music director with a band consisting of Norman Cochran, Jerry Hamilton, Earl Hefley, Jim Ratchel and Danny Vaughan. Well-known journalists portray politicians in the program, including capitol reporters John Greiner and Jim Campbell.
Charles Newcomb returns with his incomparable interpretation of President George W. Bush, Andrew Harris is spot-on with his depiction of Gov. Brad Henry, while the lovely Beth Gollob portrays the lovely Kim Henry. Billie Rodely is Hillary Clinton.
High points of the script target the primary campaign, Law & Order themes, troubled and panty-less celebreties, and Al Gore’s global warming. State politicians and trial lawyers are not spared the Gridiron’s annual scrutiny, with both Republicans and Democrats under the “truth-is-stranger-than-fiction” microscope of the local press corps.
Oklahoma City Gridiron Club President Patrick B. McGuigan said, “Gridiron is called ‘the show politicians hate,’ But they keep coming back for more. We bring ‘news to confuse,’ every February. This year, all our script-writers had to do was take dictation at press conferences. Seriously, this is a fun show that benefits a worthy cause.”
Gridiron performs in The Mary Tolbert Theater at Stage Center, where the thrust stage allows great interaction between performers and audience. Proceeds from the Gridiron Show’s parody of politics, culture and the news media itself directly support scholarships for Oklahomans studying journalism.