Even though he’s based in Portland, media strategist Adam Klugman references Hollywood every time he takes to the airwaves of KPOJ 620 AM. That’s because the name of the excellent progressive talk show hosted by Jack Klugman’s 47-year-old son (pictured) takes its name, “Mad as Hell,” from the famous (and still-relevant) Peter Finch (Howard Beale) speech in the 1976 movie classic Network.
Part of Klugman’s radio routine is to get people to call in to share what they’re “mad as hell about.” But this weekend, he’s hoping for the opposite reaction when his new play Treason, about a peace activist on death row for causing the death of 47 fellow protesters, premieres Saturday, January 22nd at 2 p.m. in the form of a workshop reading at Portland’s Arists Repertory Theater. It’s all part of the city’s ten-day Fertile Ground Playwrights Festival.
“The play is either incredibly timely or incredibly untimely, and I’m hoping audiences can help me decide which it is,” says Klugman via press release. “The play is ultimately a renunciation of violence, but along the way some pretty difficult issues come up. Not the least of which is how far must citizens go to reclaim a broken democracy.”
Treason concerns the potentially last 24 hours of lead character Scott Kragen’s life. He must decide whether or not to plead insanity and agree to other government terms in order to receive a lesser sentence of life without parole.