Robert Wuhl to “Assume the Position.” The Audience Already Is Doing Just That.


RobertWuhlCourtesy of publicist Joe Trentacosta comes this announcement — and whatever else one might say about it (which won’t be too much, given that this is a, er, “workshop” and thus not open to review), it certainly does have one of those titles seemingly designed intentionally to provoke images and laughter. (If Wuhl really wanted to go for a title of great grab, however, he could seek the sponsorship of the American Osteopathic College of Proctology or a group of similar interests. Click on the link — yes, it does exist. Ouch.)
On a more serious note, those of you interested in seeing the piece, which is co-directed by David Schweizer and Christopher Ashley (the latter is artistic director of the La Jolla Playhouse) and is attempting to promote itself as Broadway-bound, will have to pay $20 a ticket. Folks, this is a workshop: by definition it suggests that the piece isn’t finished. Why should anyone pay $20 to see a piece that isn’t finished? When Assume the Position was mounted, if you’ll pardon the pun, at El Portal Forum Theatre in Los Angeles earlier this year, it was also an eight-performance run and the cost was $30 a ticket. Good golly, $30 a ticket to watch this dude work out his comedic kinks? Talk about “assume the position”! Then again, maybe there’s a business model in charging the general public for watching artists make mistakes on their way to perfecting a piece. For example, the next time Banksy divises a new piece of art, maybe he should charge $500,000 to change his mind. Maybe Philip Glass could charge $10,000 an hour to watch him play C sharp over and over for three hours.


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Two-Time Emmy Winner Robert Wuhl to Assume The Position at Ars Nova
Workshop performances July 29 through Aug. 7

Assume The Position explores history as pop culture with an hilarious irreverence that entertains as it educates as its playfully examines some of the facts, myths, and myths-that-became-facts that have permeated American history.

After several years of stand-up comedy, Robert Wuhl had roles in movies including Batman with Jack Nicholson, Bull Durham with Kevin Costner, Cobb with Tommy Lee Jones, Mistress with Robert DeNiro and Good Morning, Vietnam with Robin Williams. His first role in movies was a starring role in the 1980 comedy Hollywood Knights along with other fledgling actors Tony Danza, Michelle Pfeiffer and Fran Drescher. He wrote two episodes of the TV series Police Squad! in 1982, and did an audio commentary for its release on DVD in 2006. Wuhl was in the beginning of the music video to Madonna’s 1985 hit “Material Girl.” In 1992, he appeared in The Bodyguard as host of the Oscars. In reality he won two Emmy Awards for co-writing the Academy Awards in 1990 and 1991 with Billy Crystal. From 1996 to 2002 he wrote and starred in the HBO series Arli$$ as the title character, an agent for high-profile athletes. Wuhl was a player in the Game Show Network’s Poker Royale series, a competition between pros and comedians. In 2006, he starred on HBO in a one-man-show, Assume the Position with Mr. Wuhl.