By Gordon Durich
Hollywood, CA (The Hollywood Times) 4/25/23 – Opening again at the Bourbon Room in Hollywood, the irreverent hit musical, “44: THE UNOFFICIAL, unsanctioned OBAMA MUSICAL” Subtitled “As Told Through The Hazy Recollection of Joe Biden),” opens April 19. Eli Baumann, creator, (and music, lyrics, and Book) who worked for both Hilary Clinton and Barack Obama in the field, to get them elected, said the piece was inspired by the way the world was changing politically at the time. “I’d never written a musical before,” said Baumann, who has a background in television, including writing credits on “Maya and Marty’ was circling around this comedy music realm.” Baumann says the show is not a political piece, but rather a “democratic experience.” Echoing the sentiment is Kevin Bailey, one of the original “44…” producers who plays John Boehner. “I’m thrilled that ‘44’ is returning for a second term at the Bourbon Room. We had a good run there,” said Bailey who was clearly amped to be revamping his role at the immersive dinner and show venue. “This is a party!”
Re- elected to the talented cast are TJ Wilkins as Barack and Shanice as Michelle Obama. Known for “The Voice,” Wilkins immediately “fell in love with the production “and was “honored” to portray President Obama.
“It’s so out there, but is based on truth, rather than fact.”
Shanice, the first African American Eponine in “Les Miserables” on Broadway also was smitten. “Who wouldn’t want to play Michelle (Obama)? She is a strong woman with class.” “I got a call from Kerry, Berry Gordy’s son asking did I want to look at this project.” She did and the rest was history.
The rest of the talented cast includes Grammy Award-winning vocalist Kitten Kuroi as “The Voice of the People” and Michael Uribes as Ted Cruz.
The Bourbon Room is at 6356 Hollywood Blvd., Hollywood. April 19-May 20, www.44ObamaMusical.com Tickets start at $35.