It’s yuge! It’s bigly! It’s covfefe! It’s The 1st Annual Trump Family Special and it’s ready to make live theater great again. After all, can anyone resist a satirical cabaret shaped by the latest Twitter feed of our current miscreant in chief? Or an insane production that’s as queer as Mike Pence? And did we mention Gina Gershon portrays a miserable Melania?
Created, written, and directed by Danny Salles and with music by Tor Hyams and Lisa St. Lou, The 1st Annual Trump Family Special — currently playing in New York — also proudly features choreography by the accomplished queer dancer Benji Schwimmer.
After a brief dry run earlier this year, The 1st Annual Trump Family Special recently debuted with much fanfare after an introduction by former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci. With a special limited run of Thursday evening shows at the off-Broadway Triad Theater through December, Schwimmer says Saturday night performances may be green-lit soon.
For Schwimmer, a former winner of So You Think You Can Dance who also has multiple U.S. and World Swing Dance Championships under his belt, this show was a pure labor of love. Originally brought on to choreograph just two numbers, Schwimmer found himself creating 20 pieces as well as navigating the actors' comedic and physical movement throughout the show.
Schwimmer gleefully describes the premise of The 1st Annual Trump Family Special as “if Trump made the egregious decision to have a Christmas special” live from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. starring his entire family on his very own Trump Television Network. As one would suspect, the faux family-friendly event quickly devolves into hilarious insanity.
Schwimmer says The 1st Annual Trump Family Special has a purposeful John Walters-like quirkiness. With songs like the passive-aggressive “Thoughts and Prayers” to the Gershon-as-Melania-sung “Look Gorgeous and Shut the Hell Up,” Schwimmer hopes audiences are prepared for pointed satire.
While Donald Trump never physically appears in the show (thank goodness), his entire messy family and political circle do. From Ivanka to Eric and Don Jr. to Marla Maples to Ivana, the cabaret joyfully features all those in Trump’s destructive orbit. Each member receives a lampooning worthy of being associated with Trump. Also not to miss: a wonderfully effete Mike Pence. More info here.