"We're going to raise some hell in heaven, boys
78With no leadership control
"We can tell the speaker where to go."
So sang the six cavorting congressmen, including one Republican with his pie-plate halo titled to the right.
"My God, it's God," said one as there appeared from the wings a bulky, bluesuited figure with florid face, gray thatch of hair, and an unholy resemblance to House Speaker Tip O'Neill.
Heaven had to wait last night for Speaker O'Neill and his six supporting congressmen to do their turn in the next-to-last act of "Prime Rib,78 this year's original musical revue by the Hexagon for the benefit of the Capital Children's Museum.
Wait a minute,78 the speaker said at the impromptu rehearsal just before going on stage. "I'm just going to have one line. I'll have a few words to say."
The speaker had more than a few words to say and brought down the House at Trinity Theater, 36th and O Streets NW.
"I'm the big man upstairs," O'Neill told the congressmen, who wanted to raise some hell and eliminate the seniority system. "It's very interesting seeing five Democrats and one Republican... God is bipartisan."
The Tip O'Neill variety show with the congressional chorus line put on the "Heaven Can Wait" pastiche for a special congressional night performance of the Hexagon revue.
O'Neill, who hadn't rehearsed his two lines in the script, did sit still refused the mascara and balked at donning the cheesecloth gossamer wings and the pie-plate halos that the other congressmen wore.
Sitting in the third row, his wife was having a grand time laughing with the audience as her husband ad-libbed on stage.
The six congressmen who go to heaven to raise hell with no speaker control were a frisky chorus line an up to O'Neills ad-libs with some of their own.
They were John Cavanaugh (D-n/eb.), Leon Panetta (D-Calif.), who played a tinkling piano; Dan Glickman (D-Neb.), who didn't need the lines that he had cribbed with notes on his shirt sleeves, Peter Kostmayer (D-Pa.), and J. Danforth Quayle the only Republican, who kept saying "You can call me Jay" to the speaker.
The script, as followed more or less, was written by Rhoda Glickman, the congressman's wife, and Phil Alperson.
O'Neill, the ad-libber last night, remembered his only previous stage appearance.
"I was in this small Catholic high school. Everyone had a role in the class play.... I went to rehearsal afternoon after afternoon. I was the butler, and when the star asked: 'Is my charlot ready?' I was to say: 'It is.' On opening night, the lead said: 'Is my chariot ready?' and I answered: 'Is it?'"