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Theatre

CABARET (1998 version)

September 06, 2020

Performances: November 4, 5, 6 @ 7:30pm and November 7 @ 2:00pm and 7:30pm.

No Admission Charge.

The Theatre Department in collaboration with the Music Department will present live performances of the 1998 version of Cabaret for small in-person audiences (in compliance with COVID restrictions).

The production is directed by Professor Stepan Simek, the Music Director is Robert Fishel, Professor Susan McBerry is the Vocal Director, and Emma Bryan, a current L&C student and a dance minor, is the choreographer.  Professor Michael Olich will act as Scenographer (scene & costume design).  Technical Director Matthew Robbins will design lighting, and along with alum Trevor Sargent will design and execute all video systems for these performances.  The cast includes nine actors and singers, eight dancers and a piano accompanist.

Based on the 1950s Broadway play I’m a Camera, which itself is based on Christopher Isherwood’s semi-autobiographical novel “Berlin Stories,” Cabaret is set in the early 1930s Berlin as the Nazis are raising to power, and it tells a story of an American writer, Cliff Bradshaw and his relationship to the irrepressible English cabaret singer, Sally Bowels as they are engaging in hedonist pursuits of the burlesque entertainment at a seedy nightclub called the Kit Kat Klub, meeting a cast of Berlin characters including an amorous Jewish fruit vendor and his down-to-earth landlady, an increasingly powerful Nazi organizer, and others, and becoming increasingly aware of the looming catastrophe of the Nazi regime.

Presiding over the action of the musical is the Master of Ceremonies at the Kit Kat Klub, an over-the top figure that alternately warns, teases, entertains, provokes, and ultimately awakes the audience to the realization that the grotesque entertainment at the core of the play is but a mirror of the unprecedented conflagration of the Nazi regime that is about to come to power.

The 1998 version of the musical differs from the original musical in some significant ways. It emphasizes the political dimension of the story more than the original, it “de-glamorizes” the character of Sally Bowels, and it points out the gender and sexual politics that was merely implied in the original in a more direct way.

We are staging the seminal musical in an innovative manner that will allow us to perform the entire play with fully realized music, singing, dancing and acting within the confines of the current COVID-related restrictions.

Nevertheless, the seating - both inside as well as outside the Fir Acres Theatre is limited. Reservations are required and being accepted now. Email Joyce Beeny (beeny@lclark.edu) for more information and reservations.

Since the weather and the temperature are unpredictable, we recommend that you dress warmly and bring a blanket for the outside viewing of the performance.