This is my fifth time writing about Cabaret on Cherry and Spoon, a record for this blog, so there's not much that I can say about it that I haven't already said. You can read my full thoughts on this genius musical here, but suffice it to say that Kander and Ebb's Cabaret is one of the best musicals ever written. Not only is it wildly entertaining with a fantastic score, but it actually means something. It's a timeless piece about the horrors of the Holocaust specifically, and genocide, intolerance, oppression, and hate in general, issues that are sadly as relevant today as they were in 1930s Berlin and 1960s America. That being said, I'll focus the rest of this blog post on the specifics of this legendary production (which officially opens on April 24 and is scheduled to run through August).
|Alan Cumming's iconic Emcee
Other than Alan's incomparable performance, highlights of this production include:
- The look of Studio 54 is perfect, the entire first floor seating consists of cabaret tables with a red lamp on each that lights, dims, and darkens on cue. Ushers and waiters are dressed as if they're part of the show. The small bare stage has three doors at the back and spiral staircases leading up to the second level, where the band sits behind a large frame.
- The Kit Kat boys and girls double as orchestra members, and are as talented as they are gorgeous.
- Film actor Michelle Williams is a fine Sally Bowles, but she's a little too polished and precise next to Alan's organic ease of being. This being previews, she has time to loosen up into the role.
- One of our Broadway faves Danny Burstein (from South Pacific and Follies) is the best Herr Schultz I've seen, despite being too young and singing too pretty for the role. Linda Emond, who appeared at the Guthrie a few years ago in Tony Kushner's Intelligent Homosexual's Guide..., is also wonderful as Fraulein Schneider (although she's no Sally Wingert).
Since I missed him the first time around, I'm so grateful I was able to see Alan Cumming in this iconic role. Just one of the highlights of this incredible week of NYC theater.