American political-satire group The Capitol Steps, who claim to put the “mock in democracy,” are celebrated for their parodies of well-known contemporary songs. The group have performed live since 1981 and released a staggering forty albums. The Capitol Steps began as a group of Senate staffers with a goal to satirize the people and places they were employed by. Collectively, the performers have worked in a total of 18 Congressional offices and represent 62 years of collective House and Senate staff experience.
The group’s first show took place at a Christmas party for the Senate Foreign Relations Comittee. The show was a success and they performed the same songs several more times that month. The group expanded the following year to include House staffers and Democrats. In 1983 they performed monthly at the Shoreham Hotel which became open to publicity for the first time. Following a positive review in the Washington Post, they soon became a professional group and recorded their first album: Capitol Steps Live! At the Shoreham. The group were now performing regularly at Chelsea’s Cabaret and three years later decided to quit their full-time jobs.
The presidencies of Obama, Trump, Clinton and George W. Bush have provided the group with much inspiration; with each new elections came an abundance of new and exciting material. They released six albums during the older Bush’s presidency and during Obamas, Mock the Vote, How to Succeed in Congress without Really Lying and Liberal Shop of Horrors were released. Since 2017 the group has consisted of an impressive 24 cast members and in the same year Orange Is the New Barack, inspired by Trump’s reign, was released.
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