San Francisco Celebrates 40 Years of Big Hats & Parody with Beach Blanket Babylon

By R. Del Rosario

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – San Francisco’s City Hall transformed itself into Club Fugazi when the cast of Steve Silver’s Beach Blanket Babylon celebrated its 40th year anniversary on the steps of the historic Grand Staircase, Friday (June 6th) afternoon. Making the show the longest running musical revue in theater history.

The one-of-a-kind commemoration featured former Secretary of State George Schultz as “Superman” and his wife Charlotte as “Wonder Woman.” The event also featured Mayor Ed Lee as Master of Ceremonies decked out in a burgundy-sequenced jacket. Lee said he “rummaged through former Mayor Willie Brown’s closet for the occasion.” Brown himself arrived to City Hall with a cape and crown, dubbing himself as “The Emperor” and Michael Tilson Thomas of the San Francisco Symphony arrived as the “maestro,” naturally.

Since 1974, Beach Blanket Babylon has been seen by close to 6 million people and put together over 15,000 performances. Produced by Jo Schuman Silver, widow of Steve Silver who died of AIDS in 1995, Jo has kept Steve’s dream alive. To this day, Beach Blanket Babylon is synonymous with San Francisco as sourdough bread and the Golden Gate Bridge.

You can view twenty of the famous hats of Beach Blanket Babylon throughout the Bay Area. It’s the first time that this many hats are on display at the same time.

Performances at Club Fugazi occur every Wednesdays through Sunday with special shows during July and December. Visit their website, for more details.

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