Talkshow host Jerry Springer took advantage last week of an opportunity posed to no other human in the world: seeing an opera in which he was the main character.
Springer attended “Jerry Springer: The Opera,” a hit at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland, on its closing weekend and came away impressed.
“Everyone was watching how I would react, so it was uncomfortable,” says Springer, whose Universal yakker is broadcast by Living TV in the U.K. “But I was really impressed by the show and the score.”
Springer’s onstage persona is shot at the end of the first act and goes to hell in act two, where he brings together the devil and a former diaper-wearing guest. Turns out the diaper-clad adult is Jesus, and Springer becomes the conduit for a Satan-Christ encounter.
“At the end,” Springer muses, “the talkshow does some good.”
Interest is running high to bring the Richard Thomas- and Stewart Lee-penned opera to London’s West End and possibly Broadway, though all talks are in the very preliminary stages. Among those attending the Edinburgh perf were Cameron Mackintosh, Andrew Lloyd Webber and National Theater director Nick Hytner.
“I think it would work any place where there are talkshows,” Springer says, “but if you know our show, you get it more.”