Broadway By Design: CABARET AT THE KIT KAT CLUB

Cabaret is running on Broadway at the August Wilson Theatre.

By: May. 20, 2024
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In Broadway by Design, BroadwayWorld is shining a spotlight on the stellar designs of this Broadway season, show by show. Today, we continue with the creatives from Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club- Hair and Wig Designer Sam Cox, Make-Up Designer Guy Common, and Sound Designer Nick Lidster.


In Cabaret, the denizens of the Kit Kat Club have created a decadent sanctuary Inside Broadway’s August Wilson Theatre, where artists and performers, misfits and outsiders rule the night. Step inside their world. This is Berlin. Relax. Loosen up. Be yourself.

Where did the design process begin? "When delving into the world of this somewhat unconventional version of Cabaret, I didn’t just want to look at images from the period," said hair and wig designer Sam Cox. "Although we used the silhouettes and recognisable shapes of traditional 1930’s looks, I wanted to add a high fashion and editorial twist; incorporating colours and styles that may not have been used or seen at that time."

Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club

"Individually tailored to the Kit Kat performers, the identity of the actors very much influences the outcome of the wig, alongside the collaborative efforts of Tom Scutt’s costume design and Guy Common’s makeup design. There is a harmonious balance between the subtle and natural looks of other characters such as Sally Bowls (Gayle Rankin) and Fraulein Schneider (Bebe Neuwirth) which beautifully contrast to the vibrant Kit Kat looks."

Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club

Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club

"My main inspirations for the makeup design came from the paintings of Otto Dix, the photography of Brassai and advertising imagery from the time; all of which depict a vibrant, saturated vision of the period," added make-up designer Guy Common. "I wanted the audience to view the Kit Kat performers through an intoxicated lens where the colours feel intense and garish, like everyone is sharing the same fever dream. I also wanted to ensure I imbued the design with an element of the macabre, taking influence from silent horror movies such as Nosferatu and Man Rays self portraits for the Emcees ‘Money’ look."

Sound designer Nick Lidster divided and conquered. "There are two sound designs for this show, one for the prologue, staged in the front of house bar and walkway areas, which is an immersive show, and the other design is for Cabaret scripted show," he explained. "Both need to exist in the theatre, (prologue also shares the auditorium with Cabaret). Both shows need to be part of a whole idea. Although they don’t sound exactly the same.

Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club

"Cabaret should sound intimate, warm, stylish and 3D. The inspiration is the shows design esthetic, the music and its script type. It is a modern, high quality take on an old school theatre sound design, the esthetic is to deliver clear 3d audio in 360 degrees."

Where did the design team find their biggest challenges? "The immersive show is very challenging as each bar area is separate, each with its own identity and vibe," added Lidster. "The prologue performers and dancers need to be able to move between each space seamlessly. Cabaret is very difficult because you are creating this complete 3D picture idea, in 6 unique seating spaces surrounding the stage, every seat should have a similar experience."

Cabaret at the Kit Kat Club

"My main challenge was to convince the cast that they can never have too much blush on, I’m allll about a liberal use of blush," joked Common.

"With the production being physically demanding we had to find styles that could hold up through a two-and-a-half-hour show, and through trial and error," said Cox. "We have our ever-evolving vision expertly maintained by the wig show team; Jamie, Eric, Antoinette, and Jimmy."


Cabaret is running on Broadway at the August Wilson Theatre. 









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