Life Is a Cabaret at Cain Park, June 19-28
June is bustin' out all over with a series of four special cabaret concerts taking place in the intimate Alma Theater nestled in the heart of Cain Park. The concert dates for the series are June 19, 21, 26 and 28. All Cabaret Series concerts begin at 7:00 PM, and are made possible with support from WCPN 90.3 FM.
Tickets for Cabaret Series concerts are available for $25 in advance, $28 day of show, and can be purchased via Ticketmaster (800-745-3000) or by calling or visiting the Cain Park ticket office (216-371-3000). Those interested in purchasing tickets to all four concerts in the series can do so in advance for a reduced rate of $75. This Cabaret Discount is available only through the Cain Park ticket office. Cain Park is located at Lee and Superior Roads in Cleveland Heights.
Cabaret is a genre unique unto itself. In it, one finds nuance and diversity, burlesque comedy and heartbreaking vulnerability. It encompasses the breadth of the human experience, as the business of show is wont to do, but without any required special effects, multi-million dollar sets, or that impenetrable fourth wall. In cabaret, audience and performer share a musical and theatrical journey unlike any other.
The opening concert on Thursday, June 19, entitled The Tenor and The Tuner, features Broadway veteran and Baldwin Wallace alum Kevin David Thomas. Thomas, a music director, vocal coach, and performer, who's worked on numerous shows as music director, keyboard player, and music copyist, everywhere from Broadway (A Tale of Two Cities) to Moscow, Russia (Russian Theater Academy), performed at Cain Park as Tony in West Side Story in 2001. As an actor, Kevin has performed on Broadway in A Little Night Music alongside Catherine Zeta-Jones and Angela Lansbury and LES MISERABLES. He was slated to appear in the ill-fated Rebecca, which ended before it began under mysterious circumstances befitting the famed Daphne du Maurier novel on which the Broadway show was based. He has been featured at 54 Below, currently one of NYC's hottest spots, which is as likely to have Patti LuPone onstage as a budding, undiscovered ingénue. Thomas (the tenor) will pair with pianist and piano technician (the tuner) Mark Graham in an evening of lyric favorites and musical hijinks guaranteed to run the gamut from the ridiculous to the sublime.
Next in the series, Saturday, June 21, is Diva Roulette, featuring another Cain Park and BW alum, Patty Lohr, who will join the first national tour of Kinky Boots in the fall. Audiences will remember Lohr's lauded performances in Cain Park's critically-acclaimed productions of Avenue Q (2012) and Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2010). This compelling actress and songstress has previously appeared in Cain Park's productions of Oliver!, Nine: The Musical and Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical. Regionally, Patty has been hard at work, sailing the high seas, and appearing across the country. She's been a part of several national tours and has been seen locally at Playhouse Square (BKLYN: The Musical) and Beck Center for the Arts (A Man of No Importance). Lohr looks forward to her return to the Alma stage in her lyrical love letter to love itself, replete with laughter, sass and high notes..
On Thursday, June 26, Theresa Kloos will bring her one-woman show Reasons To Be Unpretty to the Alma Theater, where it makes its Cleveland premier. Kloos also appeared in Cain Park's productions of Oliver! and Nine, as well as Kiss Me, Kate and The Secret Garden. Kloos is also a product of Baldwin-Wallace's noteworthy musical theater program where she appeared in their productions of Bill Russell and Henry Krieger's Side Show (where she played Violet Hilton, one of a pair of real-life conjoined twins), Charles Hart and Andrew Lloyd Webber's Phantom of the Opera, Alfred Uhry and Jason Robert Brown's Parade and Andrew Lippa's The Wild Party. Kloos's show takes the audience on a musical road trip through the life of a funny, yet awkward, Cleveland girl as she navigates the potholes of Catholic school and romantic detours, amusingly arriving at her destination: adult aplomb and alacrity.
Closing the series on Saturday, June 28, versatile vocalists Angela Winborn and Tina D. Stump, with musical direction by the talented David A. Williams, will sing their way through the standards in Angie & Tina Sing The Great American Songbook. Stump, who gave a show-stopping performance as Motormouth Maybelle in Beck Center's 2011 production of Hairspray, and will be remembered by Cain Park audiences for her stunning stage work in Once On This Island and Into the Woods.
Angela Gillespie-Winborn is a Cleveland native who has performed throughout Northeast Ohio, including at Cain Park in Once On This Island. Other local theater appearances include Beck Center's production of August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, in which Winborn played Ma Rainey, "mother of the blues". Her film credits include Antwone Fisher (Woman in White) directed by Academy Award-winning actor Denzel Washington. Williams, whose distant cousin is the late American composer and "father of the blues," W.C. Handy, began his professional career as a pianist for "The Gene Carroll/Entertainment Five Show" (WEWS-TV, ABC). In junior high school at the time, he was hired as music director for the last five years of its run. An alumnus of The University of Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music, Williams earned his B. Mus. in Jazz and Studio Music, and his M. Mus. in Orchestral Conducting. He is equally talented and at home in the worlds of jazz, classical, musical theater and sacred music, as a soloist, collaborator and director, and has worked as a musician the world over, and will skillfully lead this performance through the pages-and the decades-of The Great American Songbook, with hits by Gershwin, Porter, Kern, Berlin, Rodgers and more.
Cain Park, a municipally owned and operated summer arts park and one of the nation's oldest landmark outdoor theatres celebrates its 76th season in 2014. Cain Park is produced by the City of Cleveland Heights and is located on Superior Road between Lee and South Taylor roads.