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Author Archive: Roy Sander

Roy Sander has been covering cabaret and theatre for over thirty years. He’s written cabaret and theatre reviews, features, and commentary for seven print publications, most notably Back Stage, and for CitySearch on the Internet. He covered cabaret monthly on “New York Theatre Review” on PBS TV, and cabaret and theatre weekly on WLIM-FM radio. He was twice a guest instructor at the London School of Musical Theatre. A critic for BistroAwards.com, he is also the site’s Reviews Editor; in addition, he is Chairman of the Advisory Board of MAC.

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Commentary: Getting It Right

Commentary: Getting It Right

May 11, 2020 | By | 4 Comments

Is it my imagination, or are cabaret singers getting increasingly sloppy with lyrics? I suspect this malpractice has long existed—it’s just that I’ve been growing increasingly impatient with it. I’m not talking about going up in a lyric; anyone can have a momentary lapse. I’m talking about learning a lyric incorrectly and repeatedly performing it […]

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Commentary:  It’s Not About You

Commentary: It’s Not About You

April 5, 2020 | By | 11 Comments

Time was when cabaret was a performing arts form in which audience members sat at tables and the people on stage had a job to do: to entertain the audience. Period. Rather simple, eh? Alas, at some point in the not-too-distant past, cabaret took a wrong turn. Today, a growing number of people, especially recent […]

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David Baida

David Baida

April 18, 2017 | By | Add a Comment

  The title of David Baida’s debut cabaret show, now on view at the Metropolitan Room, is Unexpected Surprise. Anyone who saw his work during last summer’s MetroStar Talent Challenge—which he won—will not be at all surprised that this show (directed by Adolpho Blaire) is clever, funny, inventive, and very entertaining. In addition, he has a robust […]

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How “Supper Clubs” Became “Cabarets”…40 years of great entertainment

How “Supper Clubs” Became “Cabarets”…40 years of great entertainment

October 11, 2016 | By | 1 Comment

The article below was published in Back Stage on December 15, 2000. Here’s how I came to write it. The newspaper was planning a special year-end 40th Anniversary issue, with articles surveying the performing arts scene over the first 40 years of the paper’s life. Sherry Eaker, the Editor in Chief of Back Stage, asked me […]

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David Vernon

David Vernon

August 7, 2016 | By | 1 Comment

David Vernon’s new show is terrific. Before I elaborate, I’d like to back up to 2005, when I was introduced to his artistry through his CD “By Myself…” I was taken with his voice—pure, ethereal, hauntingly beautiful. I was struck by his eclectic musical taste, embracing such different worlds as Dietz & Schwartz, Michel Legrand, Édith […]

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Welcome back! … and other matters

Welcome back! … and other matters

June 21, 2016 | By | Add a Comment

Last month, after not having done new solo shows for a while, Lucille Carr-Kaffashan and Maureen Kelley Stewart unveiled their latest offerings. Making welcome returns is not all these vocalists have in common. Both are in top form and giving very strong performances in excellent shows with marvelous arrangements and exceptional instrumental support—and both are MAC […]

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I had no idea what I was letting myself in for

I had no idea what I was letting myself in for

December 2, 2015 | By | 1 Comment

Over the past several weeks, I attended a couple of shows not knowing what lay in store for me. On the other hand, there were two other shows I went to with high expectations.   Shawn Moninger For twenty-one years, Shawn Moninger was a technical director at Don’t Tell Mama. Several years ago, he packed […]

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Molly Pope

Molly Pope

September 8, 2015 | By | Add a Comment

A few years ago, Molly Pope cast off the hard-edged bitch-diva persona that had made her the darling of camp followers, and allowed us to see the person underneath. The form she chose then was a scripted, theatrically stylized presentation of her experiences breaking into show business; it was both a welcome development and a […]

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Somewhere in This Song: The Music and Lyrics of Nicholas Levin

Somewhere in This Song: The Music and Lyrics of Nicholas Levin

June 10, 2015 | By | Add a Comment

An evening of the songs of Nicholas Levin was long overdue, so the new revue “Somewhere in This Song” at the Metropolitan Room is a cause for celebration. Surveying the scene of contemporary songwriters, one finds some who may have something to say, but whose lyrics are lacking in basic craftsmanship or marked by infelicitous word/phrase […]

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Charlie Johnson

Charlie Johnson

May 4, 2015 | By | Add a Comment

In an email promoting his show “CHARLIE! Anything but Basic” at the Metropolitan Room, Charlie Johnson made a few rather grand claims. He described it as “a terrific new act” and added that he has a “unique performance style [that combines] classic cabaret with a modern-day sensibility in a way no one else is doing.” […]

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