15 Nov – 18 Nov
Stagecraft: Book: Performance:
I was unsure what to expect when I went along to see Cabaret with my wee bro on Tuesday Night. It was going to be his first time in a theatre and his first Musical ever. Would he like it? I wondered? would he have fun? To be honest I really wasn’t sure. We are both a little rough round the edges, rough diamonds you might say. Our sisters were laughing at the prospect of me taking my little brother along as he is more used to going to the football or a good night out up the town. I am pleased to say, however, that he absolutely loved it and thought it was hilarious! There were a lot of laughs in the show which were mainly instigated by Will Young who was simply superb.
Cabaret is the tale of an infamous club in 1930’s Germany where, as shown in the ‘bed scene,’ anything goes! Life is basically one big party for the cast who generally have as good a time as possible, frolicking with anyone who is up for it! There is a lot of flesh on show and a few nudie bits which help add to the feeling of liberation and that anything is possible in Berlin. There are dark clouds looming, however, in the form of upcoming rise of the Nazi party. There are also other dark issues that the show touches on highlighting the inevitable consequences of so much carefree living. But mostly, & for our entertainment, Cabaret is more about having as good a time as possible and living for the moment!
The set itself was authentic, if rather simple in parts, focused on the club and the living quarters of one of the protagonists. The young author, Cliff Bradshaw, was played impeccably by Charles Hagerty, who comes to Berlin in part to find himself and inspiration for a book. Cliff comes across as a rather likeable chap who basically just parties from the time he arrives in Berlin. Cliff is a young man who is unsure of himself and his place in the world. A nice guy but a little naive. The redemption of Cliff’s character comes as he tries to help his friend/ lover Sally Bowes, played by the stunning Louise Redknapp, as she realises that there can be consequences to living a carefree Cabaret life.
Louise carries the show in several parts and raises it from being a decent show to a great one! Without Louise and Will I don’t believe this Cabaret would have achieve such critical acclaim. Louise added a touch of class & sass to which helped bring it to life for me. Will was completely believable in the role of Emcee and appeared many times in some weird and wonderful costumes as he narrated the story or belted out some of the big numbers. I must admit that I have never seen the 1966 film with Liza Minnelli or the original Broadway show which was a little before mine or my little brothers time. However, that did not matter in the slightest. We had a great night, the story was easy to follow, there were lots of laughs, the supporting cast were all very beautiful and skillful and the night flew past. I can highly recommend this to anyone; it will appeal to all age groups & guys and gals if you are looking for a fun night out in 1930’s Berlin, before the world became a much darker place, Cabaret can take you there!!
Reviewer : Mark Parker