State Rep. Chapin Rose performs at Eastern Illinois University

By Anahita Monga

Ever wondered what a government official would be like if he were insane, crazy or eccentric?

State Rep. Chapin Rose, R-110, was just that for his cameo role in the classic play “Arsenic and Old Lace,” which was held at Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Ill., from Oct. 3-7.

The play is about two old ladies who murder lonely old men by poisoning them with a glass of homemade elderberry wine laced with arsenic. Rose plays the role of their crazy, eccentric brother, who believes he’s Teddy Roosevelt.

Rose said it was a lot of fun to play the role.

“(I got the opportunity) by chance because I (have) know(n) the theater manager at Eastern Illinois for 15 years and he just called me to ask if I would want to be part of it,” Rose said.

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Part of the reason to have the state representative perform in the play was to help inaugurate the theatre at the new Doudna Fine Arts Center at EIU.

Rose said he juggled his time well between his typical general assembly duties, attending meetings and going for all the rehearsals and performances.

“He is a busy man but he managed it fine and had a great time,” said Landon Stenger, one of Rose’s legislative aids.

Rose did not miss any of his legislative meetings due to rehearsal.

“The rehearsals were at night on student schedules so it was fine,” Rose said. “There was nothing at day time or during my office operation hours.”

He said there were often times when the rehearsals went on until midnight and managing time became a challenge, but there were special make-up sessions that helped a lot.