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Cabaret Starring Will Young - 2013 Uk Tour

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#41 Anthony


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Posted 15 September 2013 - 11:09 PM

View PostMonteverdi, on 15 September 2013 - 11:00 PM, said:

have a look at www.kenwright.com - it has all the dates there.

Ah, thank you
Don't we get to be happy? At some point down the line, don't we get to relax without some new tsuris to push me yet further from you!

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#42 djp


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Posted 16 September 2013 - 12:10 AM

View PostAnthony, on 15 September 2013 - 08:59 PM, said:

Does anyone know as part of this tour whether this show will be heading back to London? I missed it the first time around

Seems to be avoiding where it went last time - no Bromley and its done Wimbledon. .It is rather special though, I thought, and if  you do want to see it,   its coming to Tunbridge Wells - which is near the station and  within easy train reach ? Will Young is still excellent as the Emcee and Siobhan Dillon is outstanding as Sally, credibily  unstable,  and stunning singing cabaret. The ensemble is full of energy too.

#43 Distant_Cousin


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Posted 17 September 2013 - 08:14 PM

I may have to go to Peterborough to see this!

#44 SeaShanty



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Posted 23 September 2013 - 09:05 PM

I saw the Cabaret touring production at Bristol Hippodrome on Saturday night.  I had already seen this production, starring Will Young on the West End and a couple of years ago with both James Dreyfus and Julian Clary.  Whilst I’m not a massive fan of Will Young, I think that he excels as Emcee; his performance is full of all of the sinister ambivalence demanded by the role.  I also think the production as a whole is first rate.  We saw Emily Bull understudying Siobhan Dillon and I was not disappointed, particularly as I never much rated Siobhan on the BBC’s  “How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria” [although that is going back a bit].  I thought that Emily gave a really spirited performance as Sally and had the necessary bluster combined with fragility.  Although I enjoyed the show immensely, I have a couple of issues, which I wanted to share.  Whilst Will is certainly perfect for the role, I was left disappointed by the attitude of some members of the audience, who had clearly only come to see Young.  Presumably, in real life, Will Young has very little in common with Emcee and yet a rather perturbing number of the audience seemed to be incapable of distinguishing the two: responding to every aspect of Emcee, including the amoral acquiesce into fascism and the final devastating anonymity of the gas-chamber death, as chirpy personality quips in a pop concert.  I was startled to find this in London and disappointed to see it repeated in Bristol, that lots of the audience were in stitches at the revelation of Emcee’s gorilla bride, as a Jewish woman with the yellow star emblazoned upon her coat.  Similarly, “Money” was interpreted as being a light-hearted bit of fun with Will and some balloons, as opposed to being an unsettling probe into the diabolical financial greed and consumerism at the core of Nazism.  The most horrific moment, however, was when people were actually wolf-whistling and giggling at the nudity at the end of the show.  I really felt appalled to be sharing breathing-space with audience members so puerile that they could not handle the fact that millions of people were led to their deaths in gas chambers naked, believing that they were going to shower.  The final tableau of the show is its potent apotheosis of the horror, which has lurked beneath the glittering façade of Cabaret since the beginning, and is personified by the character of Emcee.  To giggle, snigger and make sexual innuendoes, in my eyes, surpasses the definition of the word inappropriate.  Whilst I by no means wish to imply that this is the fault of Will Young fans, I can’t help but feel that having a big name, especially a heart-throb, at the centre of the show does partly serve to incite these issues.
This brings me to my only slight other issue with Bill Kenwright’s production: I do not think that the flippant responses of certain audience members can be said to be entirely their own fault.  Having seen the unbelievable Sam Mendes production of Cabaret twice in Paris, I think that this version of the show has a gravitas which Kenwright’s Cabaret is, in places, lacking.  Personally, I think that there are a few moments in the show where sexual malaise and rising political and social violence take a backseat to random comedy.  Don’t get me wrong, Cabaret is and should be an amusing musical, particularly in the first act, however, I find that “Two Ladies” in particular, dupes the audience a little too much into believing that they’re in an anodyne world of pantomime.  I know that you could argue that this is a deliberate ploy, so that the eventual dénouement is all the more shocking in juxtaposition, but I just find the long string of miscellany pulled out of the bed, including a deep-sea diver, a safari explorer and a giraffe fail to serve any symbolic or metaphorical role in the play.  Mendes’ version uses “Two Ladies” to explore fully the sense of sexual possibility, which is both so liberating and so damaging at the Kit Kat Klub: it is far more filthy and far more relevant.  The second moment in Kenwright’s Cabaret which jars with me for this same reason is during “Tomorrow Belongs to Me” at the end of Act One.  I absolutely love the staging of this, with Emcee as the malign puppet-master controlling a host of dirndl-clad marionettes and yet I found that the woman [Helga?] creeping up the lectern to smudge a Hitler moustache onto his face felt unnecessarily obvious and distracted from the power of the scene; it also provoked peels of laughter from the audience at a moment I don’t believe is supposed to be funny.  I think that these couple of moments perhaps encourage certain members of the audience to believe that they are watching something which is pure comedy.  It is a shame, I suppose, that they cannot see that a show ultimately about the origins of the holocaust is going to have a troubling subtext, no matter how bewitching it may appear.
My only other slight niggle was with Lyn Paul in the role of Frau Schneider.  Her voice was beautiful, however, I do not believe that is requisite for the role.    She performed the part exactly as she did Mrs J in Blood Brothers, with the exact same accent: “So What” is simply not  “So What” without the exaggerated Germanic “Vhat”!  Something in her performance also lacked the necessary pathos of Frau Schneider [most convincingly portrayed by Sheila Hancock I think].  On the other hand, Valerie Cutko was particularly brilliant as Frau Kost and I think that Matt Rawle is truly amazing as Clifford.

#45 Monteverdi


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Posted 24 September 2013 - 12:47 PM

yes I fear that audiences are incapable of entering into the world of the piece - the night I saw it they were thankfully quiet during the final scene, but this audience had all night been traipsing off to the loo or bar as soon as Will Young was off stage. utter ignorance and unforgiveable behaviour. How can we get the audience to concentrate again.

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