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"You don't want to miss the outstanding performances and provocative production." - Talkin' Broadway

Read the Raves!

Cabaret

Music by John Kander
Lyrics by Fred Ebb
Book by Joe Masteroff

Music Direction by Mary Chun
Stage Direction by Elly Lichenstein
Choreography by Michella Snider
Assistant Direction by James Pelican


Tickets available!  Call the Box Office 707-763-8920
Adults  $40
Seniors 62+  $37/$40 Matinees
Under 30 and Active Military  $30
Under 18  $25
Under 18 Friday Night Live 8/31 Only  $9

CABARET is SOLD OUT! Thank you for your support!

Mature Content: Best Enjoyed by Ages 16 and up

This production is made possible by a gift from Executive Producers
LEW & JANET BAER
and by Producers Circle Members
CLYDE & KIM SCHULTZ
and Sponsor Circle Members
RICHARD & EDITH KAPASH
and DR. DAVID NOORTHOEK
with additional support from
THE CLAY FOUNDATION-WEST

Cast

Emcee

*Michael McGurk

Sally Bowles

Alia Beeton

Clifford Bradshaw

Lucas Brandt

Ernst Ludwig

Mark Robinson

Fraulein Schneider

Mary Gannon-Graham

Herr Schultz

Michael Van Why

Fräulein Kost/Fritzi

Krista Joy Serpa

Max/Customs Official/Sailor

Jorge Covarrubias

The Kit Kat Klub

Lulu

Sophia Ferar

Helga

Sam Martyn

Frenchie/Two Ladies

Madison Scarbrough

Rosie/Tomorrow Belongs to Me

Grace Steckler

Rudy/Sailor/Hans/Official

Brian Carillo

Victor/Two Ladies

Jean-Paul Jones

Bobby/Sailor/Official/Gorilla

Zane Walters

The Kit Kat Band

Reeds

Mad Duran

Trumpet

Dan Gianola-Norris

Trombone

Becca Burrington

Sarah Cline

Keyboard

Marja Mutru

Mary Chun

Bass

Rod Verette

Drums

Kevin Neuhoff

John Shebalin

Crew

Music Director

Mary Chun

Stage Director

Elly Lichenstein

Associate Stage Director

James Pelican

Scenic/Lighting Designer

Wayne Hovey

Costume/Wig/Make-up Designer

Jolie O'Dell

Dialect Coach

John Rustan

* Appears courtesy of Actors' Equity Association, the union of professional stage actors and stage managers in the United States

THE CAST

Michael McGurk (Emcee) made his Cinnabar Theatre debut originiating the role of Kenneth in So Nice To Come Home To. Michael has performed on Broadway in Susan Stroman’s revival of The Music Man (original revival cast), and The Wedding Singer (original cast). His other NYC credits include playing Wille Off Broadway in A Tree Grows In Brooklyn, and recently originating the role of Ted in The Sycamore Street Kite Flying Club at Lincoln Center’s Clark Studio Theatre. He has performed on the First National Tours of The Little Mermaid and Dr. Dolittle where he played Jip. His regional credits include Pittsburgh CLO (Gene Kelly Distinguished Alumni Award), 7 seasons with Sacramento Music Circus, Bedevere in Spamalot at North Shore Music Theatre, Man 1 in And The World Goes Round at Farmers Alley Theatre, Eddie in Ancestral Voices at Music Theatre of CT., as well as credits at Goodspeed Opera House, Denver Center Theatre Company, Seattle 5th Avenue, Houston TUTS, Barrington Stage, Walnut St Theatre, Tuacahn, Riverside Theatre, Stages St. Louis. Michael has performed on The Tony Awards twice. He hold a BFA from The Boston Conservatory.

Native to Petaluma, Alia Beeton (Sally Bowles) did musicals at Cinnabar in her youth before fully devoting herself to a decade of dancing. After receiving a BFA and Gold Medal in Dance in NYC, she spent the following decade in NY and the UK working as a dancer, choreographer, yoga teacher, actor and singer/songwriter. Since returning to California, she has starred in 2 local independent feature films, For What it’s Worth and Pillhead, a few short films, and has performed at Mainstage West and with The Imaginists at ZSpace SF. She also fronts a swing and gypsy jazz band, The Beguilers. Besides her work in the performing arts, she runs a home consultation and transformation business, As Within Lifestyle, is an executive assistant and contributing writer at branding agency House of Who, and is a wife and mama.

Lucas Brandt (Clifford Bradshaw) made his Cinnabar debut as Matt in The Fantasticks.  Recent credits include Tom in Beneath the Tall Tree (TheatreFirst), Malvolio in Twelfth Night (SF Shakespeare Festival) and Benny Southstreet in Guys and Dolls (Jewel Theatre). A bay area local, Lucas has also had the pleasure of working with California Shakespeare Theatre, Santa Cruz Shakespeare, Boxcar Theatre, and Shotgun Players, among others.

For the last decade, Mark Robinson (Ernst Ludwig) has worked as a jazz singer, performing widely in the Bay Area. His theatrical credits include playing the radio/band singer in Opera Parallele’s production of John Harbison’s The Great Gatsby, Man No. 2 in My Way: A Tribute Frank Sinatra at Cinnabar Theater, and Bobby in Cabaret with Theater of the Blue Moon.

Mary Gannon Graham (Fräulein Schneider) has been performing in the theatre as an actor and singer for over 40 years, here in Sonoma County, New York and Los Angeles, and has also appeared both on film, T.V. and radio. She has worked with Cinnabar Theater, Spreckels Theatre Company of Rohnert Park, Sonoma County Repertory Theatre (The Rep) of Sebastopol, Actors Theatre, The Santa Rosa Players, Santa Rosa Junior College’s Summer Repertory Theatre, 6th Street Playhouse of Santa Rosa, Theatre Works of Palo Alto, Oregon Cabaret Theatre in Ashland, Oregon, and with Main Stage West in Sebastopol. Some favorite recent roles are Mary Murphy in By The Water at Spreckels, The Housekeeper in Cinnabar’s  Man of La Mancha, Faye Clementine Nettles in The Sugar Bean Sisters, and Ursula in The Little Mermaid. Other favorites are Mother Jones in Mother Jones in Heaven, Queenie in Bell, Book and Candle, Frau Blucher in Young Frankenstein, Florence Foster Jenkins in Souvenir, Woody Guthrie’s American Song at Cinnabar and Main Stage West, Shirley in Shirley Valentine, Patsy in Always, Patsy Cline, Kate in The Taming of the Shrew, Dorine in Tartuffe, Gotchling in A Bright Room Called Day, Hermione in The Winter’s Tale, Titania in Midsummer Nights Dream and Gertrude in Hamlet. Mary is delighted to be playing the role of Fräulein Schnieder in one of her all time favorite musicals, and would like to dedicate her performance to all peoples everywhere who have been persecuted for being “different”. “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men (and women) to do nothing.” ~ Edmund Burke

Michael Van Why (Herr Schultz) holds a B.A. in music from SSU where he studied Vocal Performance. He is a professional entertainer specializing in twentieth century popular French, Italian, Neapolitan and American Cabaret/Café music (www.EuroCafeMusic.com). He has offered lecture concerts on the subjects of chanson and canzone at colleges, universities and cultural organizations throughout the bay area. Michael is always grateful to return “home” to Cinnabar. His theatrical work here includes: So Nice to Come Home To, La cage aux folles, Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris, Beneath Paris SkiesThe Most Happy Fella, Sancho Panza in Man of La Mancha, and most recently the role of Bellomy in The Fantasticks.

Krista Joy Serpa (Fräulein Kost/Fritzi) thinks it’s perfectly marvelous to be back with the Cinnabar family after previously being seen in City of Angels as Mallory/Avril. A Modesto native, Krista can be found performing all over the Bay Area and Central Valley, and was most recently seen as Lucy in Jekyll & Hyde at the Gallo Center for the Arts. Other recent favorites include My Fair Lady (Sierra Repertory Theatre,) A Christmas Story (San Francisco Playhouse,) Into the Woods (Theatre-At-Large, SFBATCC nominee for Best Supporting Actress,) and Clybourne Park (Prospect Theatre Project.) When not onstage, Krista is passionately involved in progressive and humanitarian causes, and is currently working on the congressional campaign of Josh Harder in her home district of CA-10. She hopes the timely and sobering message of this show will encourage everybody to actively stand up for one another with kindness and courage. All love and gratitude to Elly, Mary, and her North Bay family, and for Adam, always.

Brian Carillo (Rudy/Sailor/Hans) makes his second appearance with Cinnabar, having debuted – both at Cinnabar and on stage – as a chorister in Pagliacci. Brian attends Santa Rosa Junior College full time as a music major working towards his AA in Voice.

 

 

Jorge Covarrubias (Max/Customs Official) is excited to return to Cinnabar to work with such talented cast and crew.  Previous credits include Man of La Mancha (Paco), My Way: a tribute to Frank Sinatra, The Sound of Music, Funny Girl (Paul), Brigadoon (Angus), Scrooge (Bob Cratchet), Catch Me If You Can (Tailor). Two Gentlemen of Sonoma (Rodrigo/Zorro), Fiddler on the Roof, Carousel, City of Angels (Sonny), Kismet, Little Mermaid, The Most Happy Fella, Sister Act (Monsignor O’Hara) and Evita.

Sophia Ferar (Lulu) is honored  to be a part of this production. Her first play was at Cinnabar Theater, so it holds a special space in her heart. Some of her favorite roles include Bet in Oliver, Lucinda in Into the Woods, Clarice in The Servant of Two Masters, Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Philia in A Funny Thing. Sophia is working towards two degrees at SSU and being a mom, the best gift she was ever given.

Jean-Paul JP Jones (Victor/Two Ladies) is excited to join Cinnabar Theater for the second time! Currently, he resides in San Francisco where he primarily works as a singer and music educator. While living in his native Los Angeles he had the pleasure of performing with groups such as The Al McNeal Jubilee Singers, Los Angeles Master Chorale and L.A. Opera Chorus. Since moving up north he has performed with Bay Area companies such as Moonlet Theater, theTRIBE Productions and 42nd Street Moon. JP sings countertenor with musical ensembles such as Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra Chorus, Pacific Collegium, Berkeley Symphony Chorus, Pacific Mozart Ensemble, Grace Cathedral Choir of Men and Boys and the Cathedral of Christ the Light.

Sami Martyn (Helga) grew up dancing in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. She attended Lehigh Valley Performing Arts High School and later danced for the Conservatory of Performing Arts at Point Park University in Pittsburgh, PA. After college, she proceeded to dance for Fancy Pants Productions at Dorney Park Amusement Park, which is a sister park to California’s Great America. Three years ago, she decided to take a leap of faith and move to California. She is very excited for her first production with Cinnabar Theater as a Kit Kat Girl in Cabaret. You may have also seen her in Little Mermaid at Spreckels Theater as a member of the ensemble.

Madison Scarbrough (Frenchie/Two Ladies) is super excited to be making her Cinnabar Theater debut. She recently graduated with a BFA in Acting from UC Santa Barbara where she appeared in The Death of Kings as Joan la Pucelle and Warwick, Middletown as Female Tourist and Woman on Date, and When Miss Lydia Hinkley Gives the Bird a Bird as Miss Constance. More recently she was seen in The Mystery of Edwin Drood as Edwin Drood with Marin Onstage, Little Women the Musical as Amy March with Spreckels Theater Company and Mamma Mia with Mountain Play. Favorite roles include Myrtle Mae (Harvey, Three Rabbit Prod.), The Ugly Duckling (Shrek, Summer Rep Theater), and Holly (Trust, SRJC). Many thanks to her family and friends for all their support; both in the past and the years to come.

Grace Steckler (Rosie/Tomorrow Belongs to Me Singer) is sixteen years old and has just returned from New Jersey, where she was studying acting at the Rutgers Summer Acting Conservatory for High School Students. She is entering her junior year at Marin School of the Arts where she is studying acting, and she is so excited to be returning to Cinnabar, where she was last seen as the Second Spirit in Mozart’s The Magic Flute. Some of her favorite roles she’s played at school include Anne in Sense and Sensibility by Kate Hamill, Mrs. Tow-Wouse in Joseph Andrews by Henry Fielding, and Betty in a condensed version of Defying Gravity by Jane Anderson (for which she received an award for Outstanding Performance in a One Act Play at the Lenaea High School Theatre Festival). She plans to go on to study acting and math in college, and is very thankful for the inspiration and introduction to the world of acting that she received during her time at the education program at Cinnabar that helped her realize that dream.

Zane Walters (Bobby/Sailor/Official/Gorilla) holds a BA in Theatre Arts from Sonoma State University. This is his third show with Cinnabar, having appeared last season as Jose in Man of La Mancha, and in the chorus of Pagliacci. Other favorite roles include The Actor/Young Kipps in The Woman in Black (Raven Players), Leon Czolgosz in Assassins (Narrow Way Stage), Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet (Shakespeare in the Cannery), and 12 roles in Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery (Spreckels Theater Company).


THE KIT KAT BAND

Becca Burrington (Trombone) graduated in trombone performance with honors from Oberlin Conservatory, where she received the Conservatory Dean’s Talent Award. She also studied at Interlochen Arts Center and received the Governor’s Scholar and Outstanding Brass Performance award. An active freelancer on trombone and voice, Becca has performed with the Silk Road Project with Yo-Yo Ma, San Francisco Sinfonietta, Golden Gate Symphony, Santa Rosa Symphony, California Chamber Symphony, Women’s Philharmonic, Aspen Festival Orchestra, Montclair Women’s Big Band, Electric Squeezebox Orchestra, and Erik Jekabson’s Vista Nonet. She has performed with early music groups such as Trinity Wall Street, California Bach Society, Apollo’s Fire and the Dark Horse Consort. She also played in the band for several rock musicals including Jesus Christ Superstar, Rocky Horror Picture Show, and Tommy for Buzz Presents. She is a founding member of Solstice, an award winning female vocal septet. She has sung with an a wide array of artists including Bobby McFerrin, Sufjan Stevens, Meredith Monk, Andy Williams, and John Zorn. Becca has been featured on numerous recordings including the Bernstein Mass (with the Deutsches Symphonie Orchester), four CDs by Solstice, the Montclair Women’s Big Band, and the San Francisco Sinfonietta. Ms. Burrington is on the faculty for trombone at the San Francisco Community Music Center, Lamorinda Music, and maintains a private teaching studio in Oakland.

Sarah Cline (Trombone) runs the award-winning jazz program at Berkeley High School, known nationally and internationally as an incubator of talent and a citadel of swing. She has taken the Berkeley High Jazz Ensemble on four tours to Cuba, collaborating with La Escuela Nacional de Musica there. She is the founder of JazzGirls Day, an annual event which is catching on nationally that welcomes young women into the world of jazz. She has presented at the Jazz Education Network conference, the California All-State Music Education Conference, and American Educational Research Association conference. In addition to her full time work as a music educator, Sarah is an in-demand professional trombonist in the Bay Area who performs with jazz bands, salsa bands, and a variety of classical groups.

After 27 years of performing with her husband/guitarist Eddie Duran, Mad Duran (Reeds) steps out on her own.  Steeped in the jazz tradition, a lyrical, thoughtful, inventive player with her own original sound. Mad on tenor, has somewhat a likeness to Stan Getz, but she still retains her original voice.  She is the kind of player that has prepared herself for stretching the boundaries of jazz harmonies and prides herself as the primarily composer and arranger of her group, the Mad Duran Project.  Mad utilizes her ability on all her instruments, and writes and arrangers as for an orchestra.  The combination of instruments in her group (and change based on availability) are flute/alto flute, tenor, alto and soprano saxes, trombone, vibes, guitar, acoustic/electric bass, drums and percussion. This combination makes for an interesting and wide tonal palate as a platform for her writing. Ms. Duran started music with the clarinet at the age of 10. She excelled in her classical studies for the first two years and then added the alto sax playing in the stage band in junior high and continued both instruments in high school adding the flute at 15 years old.  Mad received numerous awards throughout high school and college, Clarinets soloist with the Symphonic Concert Band ’72, Most Outstanding Musician ’72, selected to participate in the Monterey High School All-Star Band ’72, Most Outstanding Instrumentalist at De Anza College ’73-’74, Clarinet Soloist with the Nova Vista Symphony ’73. And she received a scholarship to the University of Miami and graduated with a performance degree on clarinet. Mad met her soulmate and mentor in San Francisco, the famed jazz guitarist, Eddie Duran.  The two of them find a common bond in their love of music.  Mad & Eddie Duran have 6 CD on their own record label mad eddie records, look for them at CDBaby.com

GianolaDaniel Gianola-Norris (Trumpet) performs as a trumpeter with The Santa Rosa Symphony and other orchestras throughout the Bay Area. Since 2007, he has contributed regularly to Cinnabar productions as a multi-instrumentalist (on trumpet, flute, french horn, ukulele, banjo, harmonica, percussion, and vocals) and has made occasional appearances on stage as a juggler. Daniel teaches trumpet at Sonoma State University, Santa Rosa Junior College, and Music to My Ears, Cotati’s music education center. Daniel’s CD, Food of Love, is a semi-classical collaboration with his wife, vocalist Aja Gianola-Norris. It is available in the iTunes store and at www.cdbaby.com/cd/foodoflove.

MutruMarja Mutru (Keyboard) received her master’s degree in piano performance from the Sibelius Academy in her native Finland. After settling in the San Francisco Bay Area, Marja became the keyboard player for the Paul Dresher Ensemble and has since played with various local ensembles, including the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players, Earplay, California Symphony, and Ballet San Jose. She has also performed and recorded numerous new chamber operas and solo piano repertoire by various local composers. Marja begins her sixth season as Cinnabar’s go-to pianist and keyboard player.

NeuhoffA versatile musician, Kevin Neuhoff (Percussion) brings out the best from renaissance to razzmatazz! A member of the Carmel Bach Festival, SF Opera Center, Marin, Berkeley, and Fremont Symphonies, he appears with or has recorded with Philharmonia Baroque, Earplay, Opera Parallele, Oakland, California, Santa Rosa, Silicon Valley, Lamplighters, and San Francisco Symphonies. He also records for electronic media with Skywalker Symphony. Kevin begins his 7th season as Cinnabar’s percussionist. Oh…and his barbequed salmon is not to be missed!

VeretteRod Verette (Bass) first played bass for Camelot in 1976, and he’s been hooked on musical theater ever since. He’s also performed with many classical, jazz, pop, opera and ballet companies during his over 40+ years as a musician. Currently, Rod plays with the Vallejo and Solano symphonies, as well as the Symphony Orchestra for Northern California plus several other groups from big dance bands to string quartets. Rod lives in Brentwood with his wife, Joyce.


THE CREW

ChunMary Chun (Music Director, Conductor) “One cannot resist the charm, energy, and allégresse that was displayed on the podium by Mary Chun.” 
– Le Figaro, Paris. A fierce advocate of new work and equally passionate about reviving classics by the masters, Maestro Chun conducts opera and musical theater in the Bay Area and beyond. In 2014 she made her Chinese debut as Music Director for the premiere of Avenue Q in Beijing where the two-month run was met with sold-out success and won the distinction of Best Musical Production in the Large Theater Category. Invited to return the next year for the Chinese premiere of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, Mary music directed both the Beijing and Shanghai productions of this Pulitzer-prize winning musical. Completing her 7th season as resident music director at Cinnabar and 17th season as principal conductor for Earplay, Mary has conducted operas new and old in Europe and the US and worked with notable composers such as John Adams, Libby Larsen, and Tan Dun, to name a few. Nominated by the Bay Area Theater Critics Circle for her work with recent Cinnabar productions of Fiddler, The Marriage of Figaro, The Most Happy Fella and Man of La Mancha, Mary received the Best Music Direction Award in Small Theater Category for The Marriage of Figaro. Mary’s most recent Cinnabar productions were The Fantasticks last June, as well as PagliacciThe Most Happy Fella, The Magic Flute and Falstaff. Mary was recently named Music Director for the Beijing/Shanghai-based Seven Ages Investment Company which produces major Broadway musical hits in Mandarin translation.

LichensteinElly Lichenstein (Stage Director) joined Cinnabar in 1975 after a short career as a cellist in Belgium. Studying voice with Cinnabar’s founder Marvin Klebe, drama with Fred Curchack and Richard Blake, and movement with Ann Woodhead, she sang at least 50 roles with the company until retiring from the operatic stage in 1999. A passionate proponent of intimate theater and opera, she serves as Cinnabar’s artistic director, directs opera and musicals (including last season’s The Fantasticks and Man of La Mancha). She also recently appeared onstage as Golde in Fiddler on the Roof, and as Jeannette in Jane Anderson’s The Quality of Life. She returns to the stage this season to reprise her role in A Perfect Ganesh. Elly  occasionally directs and makes appearances on neighboring stages in the Bay Area. She and Music Director Mary Chun will direct next summer’s opera The Barber of Seville as a co-production with Pocket Opera.

Ingrid Emming (Stage Manager) began stage managing in 2007, most recently for A Little Night Music at 6th Street Playhouse. She has also worked on productions with Raven Performing Arts Theater, Pegasus Theater, Main Stage West, and Narrow Way Stage Company. She holds a Bachelor of Science from Colorado State University’s Department of Design and Merchandising, and 2017 marks her 19th year of private professional practice specializing in architectural and interior design. She is delighted to be working again with Cinnabar Theater.

HoveyWayne Hovey (Scenic and Lighting Designer) has been working in the technical side of theater for more than 40 years, doing everything from backstage work to set, sound and lighting design and stage management. He has provided set design for Cinnabar’s Jacques Brel is Alive and Well, The Marriage of Figaro, Bad Dates, Mahalia Jackson, The Most Happy FellaMan of La Mancha and cabaret musical My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra. He’s provided light design for more than 15 shows at Cinnabar, including The Magic Flute, The Odd Couple, Pagliacci, and the world premiere of Trevor Allen’s One Stone (Einstein), as well as last season’s The Fantasticks. Wayne serves as Cinnabar’s Technical Director.

Jolie O’Dell’s (Costume, Wig and Make-Up Designer) wildly diverse body of wig, makeup, and costume design comes to life at performing arts companies around the Bay Area. Her work is featured in operas, musicals, and plays, as well as music videos, fashion shows, and fashion and art photography. As part of San Francisco’s night life community, she also designs for drag and burlesque individual performers and groups.

Pelican1James Pelican (Assistant Director) was most recently on stage at Cinnabar in The Fantasticks as Henry and Pagliacci as Clown.  He assistant directed the production and his clown troop, Clowns On A Stick, performed Rhapsody of Fools, which was commissioned as a companion piece for Pagliacci.  Other roles at Cinnabar include Neil in The Quality of Life and Jacob in La Cage Aux Folles.  He also assistant directed last year’s season opener, Man of La Mancha, as well as the closer, The Fantasticks. Other Clowns On A Stick productions include Tasty Bites (2015) and To Bury A Cat (2012). James is also the producer of the Chautauqua Revue, now in its 16th year at the Occidental Arts and Ecology Center.

Michella Snider (Choreographer) has been choreographing throughout Sonoma County since 2001. She began her journey in local theater with Spreckels Theater Company in 2012, and since then has been their resident choreographer. This is her first time working with Cinnabar Theater, but will hopefully not the last.

 

Few musicals in the canon can claim more relationship to today’s politics than the award-winning Cabaret, and the staging currently on the boards at Cinnabar Theater makes much of that relevance while delivering a thoroughly entertaining show. Terrific talent and clever conceptual touches make for a “new” Cabaret worth revisiting. Director Elly Lichenstein has assembled a strong cast and creative team, and the consistency and commitment of vision throughout adds up to an attractive, engaging, and powerful production.
Weimar Germany on the eve of Hitler’s rise to power may seem an unlikely choice of context for a musical, but its hard-hitting historically based satire combined with the delightfully racy Kit Kat Klub setting has proven to be a crowd-pleasing winner since its debut in 1966. Cinnabar’s production incorporates and builds on many of the changes to book and music over the years, notably versions since 1998 that mix songs and stage elements from the highly successful 1972 film, which starred Liza Minnelli. Those familiar with earlier stagings, or with the film, will enjoy all of the favorites in addition to some thoughtful original moments.
Based on source material from John Van Druten’s 1951 play, I Am a Camera, and with with music by John Kander, lyrics by Fred Ebb, and book by Joe Masteroff, the musical follows American writer Cliff Bradshaw (Lucas Brandt) as he visits Berlin in search of ideas for his aspirations as a novelist. A chance encounter with Ernst Ludwig (Mark Robinson) leads him to a boarding house run by Fräulein Schneider (Mary Gannon-Graham) and other occupants Herr Schultz (Michael Van Why) and Fräulein Kost (Krista Joy Serpa). Another Ludwig recommendation sends him to the Kit Kat Klub, where he enjoys the raunchy antics of the Emcee (Michael McGurk) and his ensemble of sexy Kit Kat Girls and Boys. Bradshaw also gets a welcome introduction to the headliner, English entertainer Sally Bowles (Alia Beeton), and a surprise reunion with Bobby (Zane Walters), a friend from London.
When Sally’s erstwhile affair with Klub owner Max (Jorge Covarrubias) runs dry, she moves in with Cliff, which in turn leads to further complications with both their lives. Scenes at the Klub alternate with scenes at the boarding house, where we also witness the growing love between Fräulein Schneider and Herr Schultz. Their sweet scenes together spell hope, an end to loneliness. But these are troubled times—later revelations will have bitter consequences for all our protagonists, defying musical theatre conventions and bringing home sobering themes.
Strong performances from McGurk as the Emcee and Gannon-Graham and Van Why as Schneider and Schultz lead the show, and carry the bulk of the book’s message. McGurk expertly delivers a song that was restored to act two in later revivals, “I Don’t Care Much,” with a fierce vulnerability. Gannon-Graham enlists our sympathies with subtle expressions and then deftly turns on a dime. Van Why’s charm and sweet demeanor lend believability to his character’s naivete.
Brandt struggles a bit with the juxtaposition of Cliff’s apparent innocence with his sexuality, but warms to the character’s growing political awareness in later scenes. There’s precious little chemistry between Cliff and Sally, which can be chalked up to their mismatch as a couple, but we don’t see enough contrast of exuberance versus inner conflict. Beeton at first seems an unlikely Sally, very posh and prom queen rather than sexualized headliner in a seedy nightclub, but her vocals in signature numbers like “Mein Herr” and “Maybe This Time” win us over. She knocks it out of the park on “Cabaret,” a stirring solo.
Supporting ensemble performers are excellent, gleefully bawdy and fully enjoying their roles. Standouts include Madison Scarbrough and Jean-Paul Jones in “Two Ladies” with McGurk, and Zane Walters with McGurk in “If You Could See Her”—but they’re all suitably lewd and fun to watch. Michella Snider’s skillful choreography provides many layers of racy amusement.
Scenic and lighting design by Wayne Hovey make efficient use of a multi-level stage to allow for multiple locations and serves up some affecting, dramatic lighting moments, especially in act two. Costumes, wigs, and make-up by Jolie O’Dell are mostly effective and character defining, but it seems odd to keep Sally in black the entire show, and in conservative styles. Music director Mary Chun heads up a fine Kit Kat Klub band and guides the performers’ vocals with a seasoned hand.
If you’ve never seen Cabaret, or if you haven’t seen it in a while, or even if you saw it last week, you owe it to yourself to see this one. You don’t want to miss the outstanding performances and provocative production.

–Jeanie K. Smith, Talkin’ Broadway

Michael McGurk as the Emcee, and Kit Kat Girls and Boys

Alia Beeton as Sally Bowles

Mary Gannon-Graham as Fräulein Schneider and Michael Van Why as Herr Schultz

Jean-Paul Jones, Michael McGurk and Madison Scarbrough in “Two Ladies”

Lucas Brandt (Cliff), Sophia Ferar, Jean-Paul Jones, Madison Scarbrough, Jorge Covarrubias (Max) and Krista Joy Serpa

Lucas Brandt (Clifford Bradshaw) and Mark Robinson (Ernst Ludwig)

Michael McGurk and the Kit Kat Klubbers

Krista Joy Serpa (Fräulein Kost) and Mary Gannon-Graham (Fräulein Schneider)

Photos by Victoria Von Thal