In desperate times, people invariably start calling for desperate measures and, just as invariably, corrupt politicians are always ready to echo and amplify those calls as a way to launch themselves to power. That's the message behind The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui, a play written in 1941 by Bertolt Brecht that recasts the story of Hitler as a tale of a Chicago mobster a story that holds a frightening amount of relevance in modern politics.
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"While the piece was based around specific events that mirrored Hitler's rise to power, it's not too far off from what we see today," explains Brian Freeland, director of political theater collective Countdown to Zero's staging of the play. "We see back-door dealing; we see politicians directly quoting text from the playbook of Hitler and his cronies things like 'If you're not for me, you're against me.'"
The play opens tonight and runs through June 14, with a planned restaging during the Democratic National Convention. Performances are at 8 p.m. every Friday and Saturday at BINDERY|space, 720 22nd Street; tickets range from $18 to $20 and can be reserved by calling 720-221-3821. Visit www.countdowntozero.org for information.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Aug. 26-29, 8 p.m. Starts: May 16. Continues through June 14, 2008