Few resumes boast the breadth and depth of experiences found within Bill Bradley’s. From Olympic gold medalist to Rhodes Scholar, professional basketball player to prolific author, senator to presidential candidate, radio host to documentary film storyteller, his career trajectory is nothing short of extraordinary. His most recent endeavor, “Rolling Along,” made its debut last June at the prestigious Tribeca Film Festival, a fitting showcase for the iconic former New York Knick. Now, as of February 1st, this captivating documentary is available for streaming on Max, marking yet another milestone in Bradley’s illustrious journey.
Bill Bradley has traversed numerous paths and embraced various roles throughout his lifetime. From his distinguished career as both a collegiate and professional basketball player, he transitioned seamlessly into the realm of Democratic politics and advocacy, a move that may seem surprising to some but was a natural progression for Bradley himself. Similarly, his meticulous undertaking of crafting an oral history detailing his life and career over three years, painstakingly committing it to memory, culminated in its debut in New York City in December 2021.
A multifaceted individual whose resume reads like a tapestry of diverse accomplishments, is stepping into a new role as a television personality with his autobiographical one-man show, “Rolling Along: An American Story,” set to debut on the streaming service Max. This captivating production, which initially premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival last fall, delves into Bradley’s extraordinary journey from a small-town basketball prodigy in Missouri to a renowned star forward for the New York Knicks, and ultimately to a three-term U.S. senator.
Yet, what sets Bradley’s narrative apart is not merely the recounting of his personal achievements but his profound emphasis on the people who have shaped and influenced his life. In a manner befitting his extensive public career, Bradley intertwines his life story with a poignant plea for unity and collaboration in an era defined by bitter partisan divisions.
Reflecting on the current state of politics, Bradley lamented the pervasive fragility and hostility characterizing public discourse. In a candid phone interview from his New York City office at investment banking firm Allen & Co., where he has been employed since concluding his tenure in the Senate and pursuing a presidential bid in 1997, Bradley underscored the urgent need to bridge the gap between the polarized factions of society.
“Politics today is very brittle; there’s a lot of charge and countercharge,” Bradley remarked. He emphasized the imperative of aligning public life with the fundamental truths of human existence, transcending the narrow confines of power and wealth. For Bradley, the essence of public service lies in nurturing genuine relationships and fostering love and empathy within communities.
As his one-man show embarks on its digital journey, Bill Bradley not only narrates his own remarkable odyssey but also extends a poignant invitation to collectively reevaluate the foundations of our societal discourse. In a world marred by divisiveness and distrust, Bradley’s message serves as a beacon of hope, advocating for a renewed commitment to understanding, cooperation, and compassion in the pursuit of a more inclusive and harmonious future.
Afterward, friend and Tony-winning Broadway producer Manny Azenberg (Children of a Lesser God, numerous Neil Simon plays) told Bradley, “it reminds me of Hal Holbrook doing (one-man stage shows about) Mark Twain. You should work some things up.”
- Bradley tells a ‘new story’
- 10 things to know about the U.S. Senate (Substack item by Bradley)
- Former Sen. Bill Bradley forms anti-Trump super PAC
- Bill Bradley’s personal papers at Princeton University
- Under the carpetbag (New Yorker story by John McPhee)
- Political Theater on YouTube
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