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"Cabaret" Cape Playhouse

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jdrye222
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"Cabaret" Cape Playhouse#1
Posted: 8/10/16 at 11:52pm

Is anyone going to the Cape to see "Cabaret"?   That cast seems top notch.... I wish they did longer runs there, because I'd love to see it, but I know it's summer stock. 

Would love to hear reviews from anyone who does go.  I really like Hunter Foster's directing, and he seems to have a great team around him too for this.

 

Phantom487
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RE: "Cabaret" Cape Playhouse#2
Posted: 8/11/16 at 6:30pm

I'm going this weekend... very much looking forward to it! I'll post my thoughts! RE:

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RE: #3
Posted: 8/12/16 at 12:35am

Thanks!  Can't wait to hear about it in detail.  It's one of my favorite shows but I am in the minority with the fact that I don't love the starkness of the Mendes version... I think the show has more heart than that revival ever gave it, so I'm always interested in new takes on it.  

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RE: #4
Posted: 8/14/16 at 2:02am

Phantom - did you see it? 

wondering if I should try to get up there in the next week... I love Hunter as a director, and I just noticed that he has the music director from Scottsboro Boys on it too, which is pretty amazing with the Kander connections.

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RE: #5
Posted: 8/14/16 at 8:41am

A few months ago I saw Kim David Smith's  solo performance in Manhattan, and I mentioned to my companion that he would be PERFECT for the emcee in CABARET.  And now, there it is  - probably won't have the opportunity to see it, but those who do should be in for a treat.

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RE: #6
Posted: 8/14/16 at 4:03pm

I saw the matinee yesterday.  Was very disapointed to find out that Krysta Rodriguez was not playing Saly as previously reported.  That being said the girl playing Sally, Stephanie Gibson, was absolutey incredible and by far the best part of the show.  Foster's direction was overall quite good I appreciated that he did things with the show outside of the normal Cabaret model (in other words, it didn't feel like a ripoff of the Sam Mendes version as many regional Cabaret productions do). This being said this show had a giant mis-step with Kim's Emcee.  I am not sure if the fault lies with Kim himself or Foster's direction, or perhaps both, but I did not like this version of the Emcee.  It felt more Leading Player than Emcee and was very one dimensional.  Perhaps its just because I am used to Alan Cumming,  who packed so many layers into his performance, but I really found Kim's to be lacking.  His "I don't Care Much" lacked any emotion and overall I was just very underwhelmed by him.  This production also had many lines and lyrics that were cut from the Mendes revival, so that was cool to see.  It also had the cut Cliff song "Don't Go," although I have to say I see why it was cut as it doesnt add much and makes an already long first act even longer.  But overall I really enjoyed this interpretation of the show as a whole.  I would be happy to answer any specific questions you may have about it as wel!

Updated On: 8/15/16 at 04:03 PM
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RE: #7
Posted: 8/15/16 at 2:30am

I just read the Boston Globe review and it's really making me want to make the trip up there this week.  (It's just SO far from NYC to justify for one show.... ugh).... 

I would love to see this cast and a production that doesn't just copy the Mendes version.... 

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RE: #8
Posted: 8/15/16 at 8:48am
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RE: #9
Posted: 8/15/16 at 12:36pm

I saw it last week. After spending a few days in P-Town, I figured I'd check this out, curious to see Hunter's interpretation. I got a last minute ticket, no problem - and was actually 2nd row, dead center (the perks of going to the theatre alone!)

Let me start by saying that I'm a big fan of the Mendes production. I think it was true to the era, and over all, a brilliant piece of theatre. Now, I didn't want to see a rip-off of that production, which, as someone mentioned, you do see a lot of in regional theatre. But I felt that this production was the polar opposite. Almost too squeaky clean... The Kit Kat Club looked more like the Mulon Rouge, the Kit Kat Girls donning sequins, feathers, fringe, diamonds and beautifully styled wigs, looking like Vegas show girls. I missed the grit. I missed that uncomfortable feeling that the Kit Kat Girls gave the audience in the Mendes production. These girls didn't have money, and the clubs were absolute dives...

While I will say that Stephanie Gibson was vocally amazing as Sally, I was not a fan of her/Hunter's interpretation of the role. I felt like I was watching a mix of Marilyn Monore and Audrey from "Little Shop". She was played as a caricature from beginning to end. Yes, Sally should have an over the top "life is a party, it'll all blow over, nothing bothers me" attitude. But this carried through the entire show, never exposing her vulnerable side, thus never humanizing her. It was hard for my heart to break for this Betty Boop-like Sally in the second act. (And also - the choreography and performance of Mein Herr, featuring Sally in a diamond necklace, being carried by the boy was odd reminiscent of Marilyn Monroe's "Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend," don't you think? RE:

Moving on -- I'll piggy back on what someone else said about Kim's Emcee. Gone was ANY sexuality from the character. Granted there were several chances for him to show off his rockin' body -- that character lacked any sort of essence. I've always believed that the Emcee was like a chameleon -- always there, observing - and drawing you in. Whatever you desired, whatever fantasies you had - he could provide, thus luring you into his world. "I Don't Care Much" is one of my favorite numbers in the show - and I've seen in done a dozen different ways, all of which were very effective. Kim's lacked any emotion, what so ever, and seemed to serve no purpose - we learned nothing from it. He simply stood on a upper level and sang. Kinda disappointing when it's such a fabulous song, full of so many actable moments.

I was very excited to see Jennifer Cody as Kost. Such a meaty role, when done correctly. They chose to split up the Kost/Fritzie doubling that's normally done - which made Cody's stage time much less than normal. Over all, she was a hoot, with hilarious timing. But I missed the German verse in "Married" (which they cut - more on that later), which when translated, is quite different than what Schultz has sung earlier, and gives us a glimpe into Kost's world... It gives her a point of view on love, marriage, and the future. It helps explain her almost desperate attempt to keep Ernst at the engagement party and it tells us that perhaps she needs love as much as money from her sailors. So, needless to say, I was sad to see that dropped.

I really enjoyed Schneider & Schultz (Toni DiBuono & Lenny Wolpe). I recognized Wolpe immediately from "The Drowsy Chaperone", and it was a treat to see DiBuono (I grew up listening to her on the Forbidden Broadway albums). They were cute. They did cut the German verse in "Married", and went back to the original way, having Schneider repeat the second verse. Again - cute and enjoyable. But, when it came time for "What Would You Do?" and Schneider's big monologue -- she delivered both as if she didn't really care, that she'd RATHER be alone renting the rooms. No tears, barely any emotion -- the character had not changed from her "So What" attitude, and like Sally, left her as an unhumanized caricature.

Bottom line -- the production as a whole was good. Great talent, beautiful sets & costumes, sexy choreography. And maybe if it was my first time seeing the stage version of "Cabaret", I'd have really enjoyed it. But I left there feeling like Foster wanted to make this production AS DIFFERENT from the Mendes revival as possible, so it didn't even resemble it, thus no one could say it was a carbon copy, etc. But I think this would have worked better had they used the original 1966 or the 1987 revival script/score, rather than the 1998 revival version (all 3 are available to license from Tams Witmark). So much of the 98 version calls for the gritty, dirty, sex & drugs, down & dirty feel, which this production didn't offer. I don't regret seeing it - cuz I'm glad I did. And I don't want to discourage anyone from seeing it - cuz it's not a bad production. I'm just a big critic when it comes to this show, having directed it twice myself and seen dozen of incarnations. Anyway, just my two cents. RE:

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RE: #10
Posted: 8/15/16 at 8:51pm

PeteGonBway said: "I saw it last week. After spending a few days in P-Town, I figured I'd check this out, curious to see Hunter's interpretation. I got a last minute ticket, no problem - and was actually 2nd row, dead center (the perks of going to the theatre alone!)

Let me start by saying that I'm a big fan of the Mendes production. I think it was true to the era, and over all, a brilliant piece of theatre. Now, I didn't want to see a rip-off of that production, which, as someone mentioned, you do see a lot of in regional theatre. But I felt that this production was the polar opposite. Almost too squeaky clean... The Kit Kat Club looked more like the Mulon Rouge, the Kit Kat Girls donning sequins, feathers, fringe, diamonds and beautifully styled wigs, looking like Vegas show girls. I missed the grit. I missed that uncomfortable feeling that the Kit Kat Girls gave the audience in the Mendes production. These girls didn't have money, and the clubs were absolute dives...

While I will say that Stephanie Gibson was vocally amazing as Sally, I was not a fan of her/Hunter's interpretation of the role. I felt like I was watching a mix of Marilyn Monore and Audrey from "Little Shop". She was played as a caricature from beginning to end. Yes, Sally should have an over the top "life is a party, it'll all blow over, nothing bothers me" attitude. But this carried through the entire show, never exposing her vulnerable side, thus never humanizing her. It was hard for my heart to break for this Betty Boop-like Sally in the second act. (And also - the choreography and performance of Mein Herr, featuring Sally in a diamond necklace, being carried by the boy was odd reminiscent of Marilyn Monroe's "Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend," don't you think? RE:

Moving on -- I'll piggy back on what someone else said about Kim's Emcee. Gone was ANY sexuality from the character. Granted there were several chances for him to show off his rockin' body -- that character lacked any sort of essence. I've always believed that the Emcee was like a chameleon -- always there, observing - and drawing you in. Whatever you desired, whatever fantasies you had - he could provide, thus luring you into his world. "I Don't Care Much" is one of my favorite numbers in the show - and I've seen in done a dozen different ways, all of which were very effective. Kim's lacked any emotion, what so ever, and seemed to serve no purpose - we learned nothing from it. He simply stood on a upper level and sang. Kinda disappointing when it's such a fabulous song, full of so many actable moments.

I was very excited to see Jennifer Cody as Kost. Such a meaty role, when done correctly. They chose to split up the Kost/Fritzie doubling that's normally done - which made Cody's stage time much less than normal. Over all, she was a hoot, with hilarious timing. But I missed the German verse in "Married" (which they cut - more on that later), which when translated, is quite different than what Schultz has sung earlier, and gives us a glimpe into Kost's world... It gives her a point of view on love, marriage, and the future. It helps explain her almost desperate attempt to keep Ernst at the engagement party and it tells us that perhaps she needs love as much as money from her sailors. So, needless to say, I was sad to see that dropped.

I really enjoyed Schneider & Schultz (Toni DiBuono & Lenny Wolpe). I recognized Wolpe immediately from "The Drowsy Chaperone", and it was a treat to see DiBuono (I grew up listening to her on the Forbidden Broadway albums). They were cute. They did cut the German verse in "Married", and went back to the original way, having Schneider repeat the second verse. Again - cute and enjoyable. But, when it came time for "What Would You Do?" and Schneider's big monologue -- she delivered both as if she didn't really care, that she'd RATHER be alone renting the rooms. No tears, barely any emotion -- the character had not changed from her "So What" attitude, and like Sally, left her as an unhumanized caricature.

Bottom line -- the production as a whole was good. Great talent, beautiful sets & costumes, sexy choreography. And maybe if it was my first time seeing the stage version of "Cabaret", I'd have really enjoyed it. But I left there feeling like Foster wanted to make this production AS DIFFERENT from the Mendes revival as possible, so it didn't even resemble it, thus no one could say it was a carbon copy, etc. But I think this would have worked better had they used the original 1966 or the 1987 revival script/score, rather than the 1998 revival version (all 3 are available to license from Tams Witmark). So much of the 98 version calls for the gritty, dirty, sex & drugs, down & dirty feel, which this production didn't offer. I don't regret seeing it - cuz I'm glad I did. And I don't want to discourage anyone from seeing it - cuz it's not a bad production. I'm just a big critic when it comes to this show, having directed it twice myself and seen dozen of incarnations. Anyway, just my two cents. RE:


 

Based on your write-up, I am wondering whether it is more like the original Harold Prince production.  The show, which was very daring in its time, was PG rated, compared to Mendes' solid R-ratyed version.  I never felt that the Prince Cabaret was seedy...if anything, I thought it was an attractive place.  I loved Prince's version when I saw it 3 or 4 times in its original run and loved Mendes when I saw it 3 or 4 times.  I suspect we will never see a Broadway revival of the Prince version, but that doesn't mean it wasn't great...it just means that times changed and people prefer the more visceral Mendes version.

 

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RE: #11
Posted: 8/16/16 at 3:00am

I guess I see both sides, but it makes me wanna see this production even more.   I think the Mendes version goes too far with mood and loses some of the heart of the piece.  the MOOD of sex and all that becomes a bit much after a while.  I think it would be great to see a version that really goes back to the material and doesn't make you feel dirty.

Yes, it was a raunchy wild time in Berlin, but it sounds like that's not all gone from this production.  I just wish the Cape weren't so damn far.