SALT LAKE CITY — Outspoken Utah Democrat Jim Dabakis is taking on a new role as he performs in a one-man show titled “Stories From My Soul.”
The Utah state senator, who has zero acting training, says the show tells his life story, starting with him rising from a hardscrabble childhood as the son of a drug-addicted mother and a working-class father, The Salt Lake Tribune reported .
The former talk-radio and TV personality also tells the unlikely story of him moving with his boyfriend, now husband, Stephen Justesen, to the Soviet Union, where he worked as an art dealer and started a variety of businesses.
Dabakis is aware, of course, that the idea of a one-man show seems pretentious. But at a time when elected officials are likely to focus-group and poll-test the spin of their sound bites, he hopes it will throw open the doors to another kind of political theater.
“It’s a direct reaction to politicians who don’t want you to know anything about them other than the package that’s been worked on by all the PR people,” he says. “I think if the public knew much more about us, then they could make much more solid decisions when they are voting. What’s important is not all of our parrot speeches, but what’s at our core.”
Director Charles Lynn Frost helped Dabakis compile his stories.
“Jimmy is an extemporaneous performer,” Frost said, “which is a director’s nightmare.”
Dabakis’ show runs this weekend on the Chapel Theatre stage at Salt Lake Acting Company. The final show is at 6 p.m. on Sunday.
Information from: The Salt Lake Tribune, http://www.sltrib.com