“Cabaret” closes Berea College Theatre’s 2011-12 Season

The Berea College Theatre Laboratory concludes its 2011-12 production season with “Cabaret.” The production is adapted from Joe Masteroff’s enthralling book and features music by John Kander and Lyrics by Fred Ebb. Performances take place on April 13 and 14 and April 18-21 at 8 p.m. in McGaw Theatre in the Jelkyl Drama Center. Tickets range from $5 to $10 and can be reserved by calling the Berea College Theatre Box Office at 859-985-3300 Monday through Friday, 1-5 p.m.

The musical “Cabaret” follows American Cliff Bradshaw as he seeks to find inspiration for his novel in the 1930’s Weimar Republic in Germany. There, Bradshaw falls in love with a cabaret singer, Sally Bowles, and meets a host of dangerous and provocative characters through this fascinating tale of intrigue.

The story simultaneously presents the gritty tale of love between Fraulein Schneider, the room house owner, and Herr Schultz, a local fruit merchant, that occurs in the face of increasing Nazi control and threats.

Deborah Martin, who directs the musical, states, “We wanted to reveal a truer picture of a cabaret in the Weimar Republic in the wake of the Nazi invasion. The dancers, owners, visitors and surrounding characters are wrestling with national and cultural identities, and we did not want to offer a sanitized version.” The familiar songs “Willkommen,” “Mein Herr,” “Don’t Tell Mama” and the title song “Cabaret” will all be performed.

The musical, based on the play “I am a Camera” by John Van Druten, opened on Broadway in 1966. The well-known film starring Liza Minnelli and Joel Grey (who also starred as the emcee in the musical on Broadway) was released in 1972. Since then, the musical has had several memorable revivals, most notably in 1998 in New York at Studio 54 starring Alan Cumming as the emcee and Natasha Richardson as Sally Bowles. It is this revival, with the restoration of the original language, that is being produced at Berea College.

Joining Martin for this production are choreographer Katherine Basham and musical director Jessica Slaton – the same creative team from “The Rocky Horror Show” in 2009. Says Martin, “Working with these ladies is a real joy. Both were former students and both have become amazing professional women. I could not ask for better creative colleagues.”

Admission for Berea College students is pre-paid as part of their student activities fee, but reservations are required. As a service to our community, a sign-interpreted performance will be held on Friday, April 20. Convocation performances are April 18 and 20. Listening devices for the hearing impaired, enlarged programs for the sight impaired, and special parking and seating privileges for those needing physical assistance are also available.

Note: Due to its adult content, “Cabaret” is not recommended for children.

Categories: News, People, Programs and Initiatives
Tags: Berea College Theatre Laboratory, Cabaret, Joe Masteroff

Berea College, the first interracial and coeducational college in the South, focuses on learning, labor and service. The College only admits academically promising students with limited financial resources—primarily from Kentucky and Appalachia—but welcomes students from 41 states and 76 countries. Every Berea student receives a Tuition Promise Scholarship, which means no Berea student pays for tuition. Berea is one of nine federally recognized Work Colleges, so students work 10 hours or more weekly to earn money for books, housing and meals. The College’s motto, “God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth,” speaks to its inclusive Christian character.