What's it about?
Baghdaddy chronicles a rendition of what led to 9/11 and the Iraq war. The aftermath of what happened when the world's most powerful nation went to war, based on a single source that turned out to be a dead end.
What I experienced?
I was lucky enough to attend the premiere of Baghdaddy. It was definitely a full house and, as a celebration, the cast welcomed the audience members with donuts and coffee. Now you can never go wrong with food because food feeds a human being's heart. As we munched on delicious donuts and nicely flavored coffee, the cast mingled with the audience. But to better get to know the audience, we were given name tags in which we had to write our names. This was because, if a cast member came up to an audience member they would feel much more comfortable addressing you by name rather than ma'am or sir. With such a warm welcome, I was excited to see the show on a full stomach and quenched throat.
I was seated in the second row and I must say I had the best view AND some great people were seated next to me... the parents of one of the leading actors, they were so adorable. I could see the joy and pride on their faces throughout the show as they watched their son perform.
At first, I did not necessarily understand the title (Baghdaddy) except that the term came from the capital of Iraq, Baghdad, and after 9/11 the U.S. declared war on that country. Which was all I needed to know. Though the play is categorized as a musical/comedy, I will say that the sensitive, the aftermath of 9/11, is far from joyous or comical. Every scene in the play depicted the actions taken by governmental officials behind closed doors in response to 9/11 unbeknownst to the public.
One scene that stood out to me was the capture of an Iraq refugee (Abu) seeking asylum in Germany in order to escape Saddam Hussein's regime. Abu was aware that he would most likely be denied asylum, therefore he mentioned information that may or may have not been true and eventually... affected so many. This information was that he was a bio-engineer that was recruited by Saddam Hussein to help build weapons of mass destruction in order to destroy the western world. At first the German officials did not believe Abu's story but after he informed them of detailed information regarding the elements of the weapons and their whereabouts, it was considered extremely valuable intel. Abu received his asylum under the notion that he was saving many innocent lives from being lost, but it turned out to be the opposite.
Five months after Abu received his asylum, 9/11 occurred. Those who found the intel credible depended on it too much, to the point that they truly believed they were stopping something tragic from happening. It took me back to the time after 9/11, when the U.S. wanted someone to be held responsible but without necessarily having the evidence. Because of this, we have been in a 15+ year war with a country that is considered one of the poorest in the world. I would assume the question of who truly started the Iraq War will have various answers, which is why this question was constantly asked throughout the play. Among all the characters - Abu, a CIA analysts, a German official, the State Department, and a CIA commander - the finger was ultimately pointed at the CIA commander as the person who started the Iraq War. But, the question remains, who is to blame and when will it all be over?
Want to see it?
$32 tickets (thru TDF)
@ St. Luke's Theatre
thru April 30
What did you experience?
Let PXP know in the comments below...