Monologuist Josh Kornbluth describes Washington as a town where “politics can be theatrical and theatre can be political.” That will be particularly true next Tuesday, June 16th at 7 pm when a Host Committee of thirteen Washington-based supporters, including longtime Democratic operative Frank Mankewicz, and California Representative Henry Waxman sponsor a benefit reading of the Wendy Kout/Michele Willens play, Don’t Blame Me, I Voted for Helen Gahagan Douglas at Woolly Mammoth Theatre.
Two-time Emmy nominee Wendie Malick plays Helen G. Douglas and James Naughton, two-time Tony Award winner for the musicals Chicago and City of Angels, will play her husband, the actor Melvyn Douglas. Patrick Breen, currently appearing in Next Fall in New York, plays Richard M. Nixon and Michael Dutra plays multiple roles, including John F. Kennedy, Hedda Hopper and Lyndon Johnson.
The play is based on the 1950 California Senate race between Douglas and Nixon, both members of Congress. Although Douglas was initially the favorite, Nixon managed to paint her as a Communist sympathizer, “pink down to her underwear,” and won the election.