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What Is the Cabaret Community Doing to Combat Racial Inequality?

What Is the Cabaret Community Doing to Combat Racial Inequality?

August 9, 2020 | By | 1 Comment

Sparked by the killing of George Floyd on May 25, an unprecedented outpouring of protests against our nation’s systemic racism got every one of us thinking more urgently about racial inequality.  We now understand that we all have the responsibility to act—both personally and professionally—as anti-racism agents of change.  Earlier this summer, I wrote about […]

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CD Review: Lisa Viggiano’s “Invited to Stay”

CD Review: Lisa Viggiano’s “Invited to Stay”

August 2, 2020 | By | Add a Comment

The wonderfully warm, wise, and appealing vocalist Lisa Viggiano intends her newest CD, Invited to Stay, to give us all a break from quarantines, CoVid-19, face masks, presidents, and, for the most part, she succeeds delightfully. Presenting an intriguing patchwork of songs from decades come and gone written by some stalwarts of the American pop and rock […]

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Cabaret Setlist: “Two for the Road” — Music by Henry Mancini, lyrics by Leslie Bricusse

Cabaret Setlist: “Two for the Road” — Music by Henry Mancini, lyrics by Leslie Bricusse

July 26, 2020 | By | 2 Comments

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Song #4 in this running series The cable came directly from Audrey Hepburn, who was in France shooting her latest film, with director/producer Stanley Donen. “Dearest Hank, please won’t you do the music? … Can’t imagine anyone else but you scoring.” How could Henry Mancini refuse the […]

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Cabaret Setlist: “California Nights” — Music by Marvin Hamlisch, lyrics by Howard Liebling

Cabaret Setlist: “California Nights” — Music by Marvin Hamlisch, lyrics by Howard Liebling

June 21, 2020 | By | Add a Comment

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Song #3 in this running series. Unlike the first two songs we’ve examined in Cabaret Setlist (Rodgers & Hart’s “Little Girl Blue” and Stephen Sondheim’s “Sand”), today’s selection hails from the world of AM-radio pop. First heard in January 1967, “California Nights” anticipates the coming Summer of […]

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Why Is Color Mostly Absent from Cabaret Stages?

Why Is Color Mostly Absent from Cabaret Stages?

June 14, 2020 | By | 3 Comments

On the one hand, the New York cabaret scene is remarkably diverse.  It showcases performers brand new to the business, spotlights mature artists of an age rarely featured on stage or screen, and proudly welcomes a rainbow of gender and genre expressions.   On the other hand, cabaret is decidedly monochrome. Cabaret stages and audiences […]

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We Have to Laugh!   Finding Humor in Terrible Times

We Have to Laugh! Finding Humor in Terrible Times

May 31, 2020 | By | Add a Comment

“Aside from that, Mrs. Lincoln, how did you enjoy the show?” That famous joke was obviously not made at the time of Lincoln’s assassination but many years later, a prime example of how, as comedian Steve Allen put it, “comedy equals tragedy plus time.” It’s usually difficult to joke about tragedy while it’s happening, but […]

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The Evolving Genre/Gender-Bending Art Form Known as Drag is One Big Hybrid

The Evolving Genre/Gender-Bending Art Form Known as Drag is One Big Hybrid

May 22, 2020 | By | Add a Comment

(This is Part One  of a multi-part series on alternative cabaret by Simi Horwitz.) The diva-inspired bitchy and/or adorably naughty drag queen is still with us. Hey, she’s the archetype and a few have elevated drag to high art. Think Varla Jean Merman, the self-described love child of Ernest Borgnine and Ethel Merman, indisputably brilliant […]

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Cabaret Setlist: “Sand” – Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim

Cabaret Setlist: “Sand” – Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim

May 15, 2020 | By | Add a Comment

Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook Song #2 in this new running series. Few among us dispute the idea that Stephen Sondheim is the most important living American composer/lyricist in musical theatre. He has raised the artistic bar for songwriting so high that giants in the sky could effortlessly dance the limbo beneath […]

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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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Cabaret Setlist: Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook

Cabaret Setlist: Repertoire for the Once and Future American Songbook

May 4, 2020 | By | Add a Comment

  Song #1 in this new running series: “Little Girl Blue” – Music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Lorenz Hart When it comes to cabaret repertoire, I can think of few other songwriters who have created the sort of treasure trove that Rodgers and Hart have given us. The appeal of their catalog was (and […]

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