Sunday, January 29, 2017


                                               (on the train to berlin - show hadn't started yet)

Here's a quick shout-out for Cabaret at the Hayes Theatre - small in-your-face little theatre that it is. We went very early in the run. It doesn't need me to say what a great musical it is, song after song after song, and of course the story line as an echo of Isherwood is still, and increasingly, relevant today. This is the first time I've seen it live.

There's some very memorable casting of some of our greats, notably:

Kate Fitzpatrick ~ Fräulein Schneider
Marcus Graham ~ Ernst
John O'May ~ Herr Schultz, and - drum rolllll:

Paul Capsis ~ Emcee (born to play the role you would have thought)

Chelsea Gibb taking on the pretty difficult role of Sally

Jason Kos, and especially attractive Clifford

and a fabulous team of all singing' all dancin' standouts in the link above. And a great band. And fine choreography.

K thought it was "awesome" and would "go again tomorrow". Now, we've seen some pretty big shows in our time - pick a city, pick a composer - and that was a first.

I especially enjoyed Mr Kos's Clifford - restrained and very alluring in accent and stage style. Kate F's Fraulein Schneider was wonderfully subtle, and shaded with a past just below the surface and it was staying there. She looked, as usual, beautiful - those legs, still those fabulous legs (and great shoes). Marcus Graham - amazing, scary, what a great actor. John O'May simply wonderful too. We were seeing great performers doing great things with great characters.

For Emcee, Paul Capsis went big. Really big. Not frantic or manic big, but maniacal big. It was a leather cigar-smoking lesbian look, pretty unsubtle, and from the second row, much too strong for me. K didn't mind; it was all awesome.  I needed to sit back, or better still, this huge personality needed a bigger stage. In fact, the show had the stamp of transfer it out to a bigger venue about it, as they did with the stunning Sweet Charity (Verity Hunt-Ballard had Geoffrey Rush standing and cheering the night we went - don't think I ever blogged about it) in taking it to the Opera Theatre, where I'm told it lost a bit of the buzz, natch.

And if I learnt anything, I came to appreciate what a difficult role Sally is. It's the only good girls get pregnant scenario. Innocent, but well, not really, at least pretending not to be, probably naive, but how could she sill be, and in trying too hard to be not, in a loud more American than English way (or is that the long shadow of Minelli) .. or is it simply survival and ... anyway, she's going' like Elsie! Big Number that one. Chelsea Gibb may have had its measure, in a more wearing the part rather than inhabiting it kind of way, and she too went for bigly big - well you would up against Paul Capsis - and again I'm thinking she's playing to a big house. But this isn't.

This show doesn't come round here often, these talents aren't pooled often, and it is a great venue, but sit close AYOR.

No comments: