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PlayCo's Cabaret Gourmet Gala to Feature Mwenso And The Shakes, Lauren Worsham and Kyle Jarrow to Host

PlayCo's Cabaret Gourmet Gala to Feature Mwenso And The Shakes, Lauren Worsham and Kyle Jarrow to Host

The Play Company (PlayCo) is pleased to announce chefs and artists scheduled for Cabaret Gourmet: The Ultra Violet Party, on Monday, April 9 at Espace in mid-town Manhattan. This year's event will be hosted by Lauren Worsham and Kyle Jarrow, and will feature a live performance by Mwenso and The Shakes. Participating chefs and restaurants will include Graffiti, Miznon, Omar's, Chef Samira Nanda Sine, Ortzi, August, Serengeti Kitchen and more.

For 15 years this has been a unique and popular event in the NYC benefit calendar, raising vital funds for PlayCo's award-winning, not-for-profit theatre. This year, they are thrilled to honor Lisa Gross & The League of Kitchens, and chef, artist and humanitarian Dough Hamilton Caranda-Martin. Their work to serve and inspire others is what this year's event, The Ultra Violet Party, is all about: celebrating innovative food and art that celebrates and facilitates the sharing of cultures .

The gala supports PlayCo's award-winning mission to engage New Yorkers in a dynamic, global experience of contemporary theatre, bringing vital new plays from around the world to NYC stages. This is PlayCo's biggest fundraiser of the year, with a vibrant mix of stars from theatre and culinary arenas focused on raising crucial funds for their adventurous productions.

Chef Jehangir Mehta/Graffiti Food & Wine, the Iron Chef finalist who has participated in Cabaret Gourmet for many years since its founding, has joined the Host Committee and will be a featured chef this year. The Host Committee also includes: Katherine Alford, Bronwyn McElroy, Philip Halpern, Michael Fedele & Douglas Wurth.

About Mwenso and the Shakes

Mwenso and the Shakes are a unique troupe of global artists who present music that merges the highest form of entertainment and artistry while commanding a formidable timeline of jazz and blues expression through African and Afro American music. Immigrating from Sierra Leone, London, South Africa, Greenwich Village, Madagascar, France, Jamaica, and Hawaii the Shakes all now call Harlem their home. Taking from the stylings of Fats Waller, Muddy Waters, James Brown and many other American musical legends - Michael Mwenso leads an electrifying show the New York Times calls "intense, prowling, and ebullient."

About the Hosts

Lauren Worsham is a Drama Desk Award-winning and Tony Award-nominated actress and singer. She originated the role of Phoebe on Broadway in A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder, for which she received a Drama Desk Award, a Theatre World Award, and a Tony Award nomination. With her husband Kyle Jarrow, she fronts the indie-pop band Sky-Pony - which, in addition to playing at concert venues all around New York, created and performed the stage show The Wildness (a Play Company co-production with Ars Nova), nominated for a Lortel Award for Outstanding Musical. Lauren has also appeared as Magnolia in Show Boat with the New York Philharmonic (also on PBS), Lisa in Dog Days at Montclair Peak Performances, Fort Worth Opera and LA Opera (dir. Robert Woodruff), Flora in Turn of the Screw at New York City Opera (dir. Sam Buntrock), Amy in Where's Charley at New York City Center (dir. John Doyle), Cunegonde in New York City Opera's Candide, and Olive in the first National tour of The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. Lauren has also appeared in La Perichole at New York City Opera, Carnival (Lili) at Goodspeed Opera House, Into the Woods (Cinderella) at Kansas City Rep, Master Class (Sophie) at Paper Mill Playhouse, The Light in the Piazza (Clara) at Weston Playhouse and The Fantasticks (Luisa) at Emelin Theatre. Lauren has performed in concert frequently, both with her band and solo, including shows at Carnegie Hall, Caramoor, Merkin Hall, Oregon Bach Festival, Mercury Lounge, Joe's Pub, The Park Avenue Armory and New York City Opera's VOX Program. More information on Lauren at

Kyle Jarrow is an Obie-winning writer and musician who makes work for television, film and the stage. He created the television series Valor, which premiered on The CW network and is now available to stream on Netflix. Kyle is bookwriter of the Broadway musical SpongeBob SquarePants, playing at the Palace Theater. He leads the rock band Sky-Pony alongside his wife Lauren Worsham.Kyle's theater pieces include A Very Merry Unauthorized Children's Scientology Pageant (OBIE Award), The Wildness (Lortel Award nominee), Armless (Fringe NY Overall Excellence Award), Whisper House (with Duncan Sheik, record available from RCA/Victor), Hostage Song (with Clay McLeod Chapman), The Consequences (with Nathan Leigh), Love Kills, Trigger and Gorilla Man. His plays have been seen all over the U.S., in Canada and in Europe: including The Old Globe, Steppenwolf, New York Theatre Workshop, Ars Nova, P.S. 122, American Repertory Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival and London's Other Palace Theatre. In the world of features, Kyle penned the indie Armless (an official selection of the Sundance Film Festival) and Saint Janet (starring Kelly Bishop). Kyle was a founder of the now-retired art-rock band The Fabulous Entourage, which appeared in the Whitney Biennial and opened for such groups as Hot Chip and We Are Scientists. Last but not least, Kyle is a proud member of the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) Associate Board. More info at

About The Play Company (PlayCo)

The Play Company is an OBIE Award-winning Off Broadway theater Production Company. Since launching in 1999, PlayCo has produced 33 new plays from the United States, Germany, Romania, Poland, Sweden, Japan, India, Russia, Chile, Mexico, Palestine, France, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and England. PlayCo develops and produces adventurous new plays from the U.S. and around the world, advancing a dynamic global experience of contemporary theater and expanding the American theater repertoire.

As the only New York company regularly producing outstanding contemporary plays from around the world alongside new American work, PlayCo's distinctive international programming links American theatre with world theater, American artists with the global creative community, and American audiences with a whole world of plays.

Photo Credit: Jennifer Broski

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