The sort of, kind of, true story about how the Iraq War started
Who’s Your Baghdaddy? Or How I Started The Iraq War, is a fun, comedic, off Broadway musical that tells the story of how the Iraq War started. Being dark, irreverent, and what they claim as “hysterical fiction,” this story follows a group of mid-level spies and informational analysts whose egos, vanities, and office politics got in the way and paved the path for the worst intelligence gaffes in modern history. This musical starts off with audience members sitting in a circle, resembling something of an AA meeting, and the actors, seemingly normal people, one by one stand up and tells their story of how they started the Iraq War. But what is really great is that in the process of telling their individual stories, all the actions and plots weave themselves together to form one cohesive and extremely funny storyline.
If you know nothing about how the Iraq War was started, then this may well be the most believable source you can get about it. Although this is a comedic musical making fun of the blunders that happened, it is fun to see how they manipulate actual fact into something that can be laughed about. Compressing so many different people into eight different actors may seem extremely difficult but the way each character shines shows the how well Marshall Pailet and A.D Penedo did when making this musical. And the actors in this show did a marvelous job of really getting into character, no matter how contrived the lines were or how simply ridiculous the characters were, and really made their performances believable. The choreography, done by Misha Shields, was extremely fun to watch, nothing too crazy and technical, but still showed a lot of skill. Similarly, the songs were spot on, being lighthearted, especially seeing as this is a very touchy and dark subject, and also playing well with the storylines. And all the actors who had musical moments did well in presenting the songs and having their vocal skills really shine in the process. But, what makes this musical really special is how it is at the Actors Temple Theater and how the musical itself plays out on the same floor that the audience is sitting on, making the show interactive in a way and definitely more personable.
All in all, Who’s Your Baghdaddy? Or How I Started The Iraq War, is a great musical that is interesting, “informative,” and above all, fun. The songs were great, the acting phenomenal, and the jokes, most importantly, landed without any trouble. The show opened on October 4 and is set to run through November 22, 2015 at the Actors Temple Theater, so be sure to check it out.