The Show

Inspired by a true story, Who’s Your Baghdaddy, or how I started the Iraq War is a satirical musical comedy with music and book by Marshall Paillet, lyrics and book by A.D. Penedo, based on an unproduced screenplay by J.T. Allen. Presented as a support group for people who started the Iraq War this dark, boisterous and irreverent story follows a handful of mid-level spies whose vanity and office politics contributed to the worst intelligence blunder in modern history. The show was produced Off-Off Broadway at the Actor’s Temple in 2005 and Off-Broadway at the St Luke’s Theatre in 2017.

The musical is set in an “AA-style” support group meeting for people who believe (or don’t want to believe) that their actions lead to the start of the Iraq War. The story focuses on the recruitment and eventual disgrace of an Iraqi defector, codenamed "Curveball" and the use and misuse of his testimony by the CIA, State Department, and Bush Administration. In the show, as in reality, Curveball provides Western intelligence agencies with false intelligence on Iraqi mobile weapons laboratories. This intelligence, which is later discovered to have been fabricated, was used by Secretary of State Colin Powell in his 2003 speech to the UN Security Council to justify the invasion of Iraq and overthrow Saddam Hussein.

The show is a reflection of how people in power, whether high, mid or low level in government, shape and form our world and the importance of keeping them accountable in times of crisis. In our current times, this feels more meaningful than ever.


Who’s Your Baghdaddy will be performed and streamed completely live every night for 5 nights. We will be taking over a house with each actor having their own room, camera and microphone. All of these feeds will be come to a central computer in the house and from there will be streamed out across Australia. We have an incredible group of creatives and crew to handle this ambitious undertaking so that we can keep the flame of live theatre alive.

The live performance will be recorded and streamed on demand for two weeks following the 5 live performances.

Who's Your Baghdaddy, or How I Started the Iraq War

Music and Book by Marshall Pailet

Lyrics and Book by A.D. Penedo

Based on a screenplay by J.T Allen

By special arrangement with Music Theatre International (Australasia)

on behalf of Dramatic Play Services Inc.

Developed and Produced Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway, and in DC by Charles Fink through Baghdaddy LLC and The New Musical Foundation.