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MAMMA MIA!'s Carrie Manolakos and More Perform at Signature Theatre's Sizzlin' Summer Cabaret, Now thru 7/28


Virginia's Signature Theatre is heating up once again this summer with their annual Sizzlin' Summer Cabaret, a series featuring a number of red hot acts from some of our favorite DC and Broadway performers from tonight, July 11th through July 28th.

Headlining the talented array of solo artists will be the singer-songwriter – and internet sensation Carrie Manolakos (Broadway's Mamma Mia!), Broadway husband-and-wife team Matthew Scott (First You Dream: The Music of Kander and Ebb at Signature and the Kennedy Center) and Kirsten Scott (Follies on Broadway), and Helen Hayes Award winner Natascia Diaz (Brother Russia and Kiss of the Spider Woman at Signature). Nick Blaemire and the Hustle, a 9-piece funk/R&B band will be making their DC debut at Signature and Will Gartshore (Signature's Show Boat, Merrily We Roll Along) comes back with an all new cabaret show.

Other solo performances featured in the Sizzlin' Summer Cabaret include this year's Helen Hayes Award winner for "Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical" Carolyn Cole (Hairspray at Signature), Helen Hayes Award winner Geoff Packard (Broadway's Phantom of the Opera, Shakespeare Theatre's Candide), Bob McDonald (Signature's Putting it Together and Anyone Can Whistle in Concert), and Signature staple Stephen Gregory Smith (The Boy Detective Fails, Hairspray). Erin Driscoll (Brother Russia and [title of show] at Signature), Sandy Bainum (Sunset Boulevard and Show Boat), and Florrie Bagel (Into the Woods) will also be bringing their own distinct voices and sounds to the ARK Theatre at Signature. The 2012 line-up also features two celebrated cabaret artists in award-winning NYC singer-comedienne Colleen McHugh (AfterDark Award for "Outstanding Cabaret Artist") and nationally recognized cabaret and jazz recording artist Cory Jamison.

Signature's Artistic Director Eric Schaeffer stated, "Our Sizzlin' Summer Cabaret series has become a refreshing summer treat to DC audiences and this year promises to be another scorcher. The impressive collection of talents we have assembled runs the gamut through all musical genres – from Broadway and jazz, to blues, folk and good old fashioned rock n' roll. It's an amazing 3 weeks that prepares us for the opening of a brand new season at Signature."

In addition, Signature will also be celebrating the music of Grammy Award winner and singer- songwriter legend James Taylor with two performances of Signature Sings James Taylor. The show will feature James Gardiner (The Boy Detective Fails, [title of show]), teaming up with Emmy Award-winning pianist Lenny Williams and guitarist Steven Walker. With the help of Helen Hayes Award winners Carolyn Cole, Natascia Diaz, Erin Driscoll, and Nova Y. Payton (Xanadu and Hairspray), the evening will explore some of J.T.'s most beloved musical hits, as well as a few hidden gems. The finale of the Cabaret series, which has now become a Signature tradition, brings the return of the very popular Revenge of the Understudies, with performances by a host of talented performers who have understudied at Signature this past season.

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