University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Theatre will pull out all the stops April 20-21, presenting Cabaret, its first Weidner Center mainstage production in more than a decade.
This large-scale endeavor combines the talents of UW-Green Bay Theatre and Music students, along with seasoned alumni, to present the groundbreaking musical from Kander and Ebb. Planning began in earnest for Cabaret in summer 2011, and faculty, staff, students and alumni have worked throughout the academic year to make it a reality.
Set in the seedy Kit Kat Klub in 1930s Berlin, Cabaret premiered on Broadway in 1966, sweeping the Tony Awards. The 1972 film starring Liza Minnelli brought international fame to Christopher Isherwood’s character, Sally Bowles, a young, eccentric cabaret performer who fascinates Cliff, an American writer and teacher of English. The decadence of the nightly celebrations in the cabarets stands in stark contrast to the rise of the Nazi party in Germany. Cabaret has become a classic of American musical theatre, featuring a brilliant and memorable score by Kander and Ebb, who later collaborated on the musical Chicago.
“The musical Cabaret has a rich history that spans eight decades and two continents,” said UW-Green Bay Theatre Prof. and Cabaret director Laura Riddle. “Its material is politically charged and socially relevant, yet a source of great entertainment and enjoyment for audiences both familiar with and new to this classic production. We are thrilled to be presenting Cabaret on the Weidner Center mainstage.”
UW-Green Bay Music also is excited to be part of the production, said Assistant Prof. Courtney Sherman, the show’s music director and conductor. The project has presented many opportunities for students and faculty alike.
“It has been an absolute pleasure collaborating with such talented colleagues on this production,” she said. “There are many challenges surrounding a project of this scope, but there are also many rewards. I have found this project to be very fulfilling in terms of my own creative work, but also as an educator. There are opportunities for student learning at every turn.”
Plenty of planning has gone into the UW-Green Bay production of Cabaret, much of it away from the Weidner Center itself. Rehearsals are taking place in the smaller University Theatre on campus until the set makes its big move to the Weidner Center the week of the show. Still, set designer and UW-Green Bay Prof. Jeffrey Paul Entwistle left nothing to chance in creating the world of Cabaret, using detailed schematics to make his vision come to life. Also constructed from scratch are the vibrant costumes for the musical, hand-made by Associate Prof. Kaoime Malloy in the Costume Shop on campus.
The cast, crew and orchestra of Cabaret represent a broad base of UW-Green Bay Theatre and Music talent. The University also is bringing in seasoned alumni, including Eric Lindahl, a 2002 graduate — who is now acting professionally in Chicago — in the role of the Emcee. Lindahl performed in the last Weidner Center mainstage production, Pippin, in 2000. Alumni also have key roles behind the scenes — for example, Stacey Nellen Kolze (’98) will provide wigs for the show. Kolze owns Nell’s Wigs in Green Bay, a shop that provides wigs for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.
Cabaret performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Friday, April 20 and Saturday, April 21 at the Weidner Center on the UW-Green Bay campus, 2420 Nicolet Drive. Tickets are $25 or $30. Order online at www.uwgb.edu/tickets or by calling (920) 465-2400 or (800) 328-tkts.
Cabaret personnel (as of March 23, 2012):
Eric Lindahl (Emcee), 2002 alumnus, professional actor; Andrew Delaurelle (Bobby), junior, Theatre Performance; Cody A. Galligan (Hans/Rudy), freshman, Musical Theatre; Chelsea Crevcoure (Fraulein Kost), senior, Musical Theatre; Derek James Knabenbauer (Ernst/Fight Choreographer), senior, Theatre Performance; Emily Terrell Paulsen (Fraulein Schneider), senior, Musical Theatre; Erin Sunisa Zimmermann (Cleo), junior, Music and Theatre Performance; Jade Landry (Customs Officer/Bodyguard), senior, Theatre; Joseph Feltz (Max), senior, Business Management; Kyle R. Pingel (Victor/Lady/Assistant to the Costume Designer), senior, Design/Tech Theatre; Leah LaMalfa (Helga), junior, Music Education (Vocal); Lindsay Cummings (Ginger), junior, Musical Theatre/Vocal Performance; Lindsay Kujawa (Texas/Dance Captain), senior, Theatre; Marta Knodle (Sasha/Gorilla), senior, Musical Theatre; Matthew Harris (Cliff/ Stand-in Emcee), senior, Theatre Performance; Molly LeCaptain (Sally Bowles), senior, Musical Theatre; Morgen Aria Clarey (Kitty), freshman, Musical Theatre; Noel Fricke (Fritzie), senior, Musical Theatre; Patrick Fincutter (Herman/Sailor/Bodyguard), senior, Theatre Performance; Randall J. Tranowski (Wolfi), junior, Musical Theatre, Political Science and Public Administration; Ross David Christian (Herr Schultz), senior, Theatre-Performance; Shelbi Cox (Hilda), senior, Musical Theatre and Arts Management; Stephanie Frank (Heidi), sophomore, Musical Theatre Performance; Natalie Vanden Heuvel (Frenchie/Chanteuse), junior, Musical Theatre
Adam LeGrave (Percussion), senior, Music; Anthony Pesavento (Bass), sophomore, Jazz Studies; Bill Burroughs (Trombone), senior, Music; Cole Watkins (Tenor Saxophone), junior, Music Education; Eileen Lacenski (Clarinet), senior, Music; Greg Koeller (Trumpet), junior, Music Education; Kayla Johnson (Trumpet), senior, Music Education; Kyle M. Sweeney (Synthesizer/Auxiliary Percussion), sophomore, Music Education; Ladislava Gaines (Accordion); Mary Slavek (Rehearsal Pianist, Orchestra Keyboard), UW-Green Bay adjunct music instructor; Mike Fowler (Guitar), senior, Music Education, Instrumental and General Music; Sam Stranz (Reeds), sophomore, Jazz Studies; Tyler Rindo (Clarinet), senior, Music
Laura Riddle (Director), UW-Green Bay professor; Denise Carlson-Gardner (Choreographer), UW-Green Bay lecturer; Courtney Sherman (Music Director/Conductor), UW-Green Bay assistant professor; Adam Gaines (Instrumental Music Director), UW-Green Bay assistant professor; Jeffrey Paul Entwistle (Set Designer), UW-Green Bay professor; Kaoime E. Malloy (Costume Designer), UW-Green Bay associate professor; Dean Kolze (Lighting Designer), UW-Green Bay alumnus and industry professional; Richard J. Kenny (Sound Designer), UW-Green Bay alumnus and industry professional; R. Michael Ingraham (Technical Director), UW-Green Bay associate professor; Wendy A. Huber (Stage Manager) senior, Technical Theatre and Design
David Cook (Assistant Technical Director, Fly Master); Kyle R. Pingel (Assistant to the Costume Designer); Tamar Brooks (Assistant Stage Manager); Taylor Hoeft (Assistant Stage Manager, Carpenter); Scott Klapperich (Assistant Stage Manager, Carpenter); Megan M. Fletcher (Vocal Music Assistant); Lindsay Kujawa (Dance Captain); Matthew Harris (Stand-in for Mr. Lindahl); Paul Meier (Dialect Design); Derek James Knabenbauer (Fight Choreographer, Carpenter); Liz Galba (Property Master); Mary Slavek (Rehearsal Pianist); Richard Perry (Rehearsal Pianist); Kaiome E. Malloy (Costume Shop Supervisor, Makeup Crew); Donna Entwistle (Costume First Hand); Bonnie B. Jenkins (Cutter/Draper); Stacey Nellen Kolze (Wig and Hair, Makeup Crew); Emily Pomplun (Makeup Crew, Costume Technician); Alyssa Falvey (Wardrobe Crew Supervisor); Erin Torkelson (Wardrobe Crew Supervisor); Brooke Uhl (Wardrobe Crew, Costume Technician); Chad Bishop (Spotlight Manager); John Buss (Spotlight Operator); Michael Hengels (Spotlight Operator); Drew Arnold (Spotlight Operator, Sound Technician); Joey Hart (Spotlight Operator, Costume Technician, Carpenter); Libby Reineke (Projection Technician, Carpenter); Wendy A. Huber (Costume Technician); Noel Fricke (Costume Technician); Drew Arnold (Carpenter); Liz Barlament (Carpenter); Chad Bishop (Carpenter); Jon Buss (Carpenter); Shelbi Cox (Carpenter); Daniel Fletcher (Carpenter); Liz Galba (Carpenter); Cody A. Galligan (Carpenter); Michael Hengels (Carpenter); Hannah Herdt (Carpenter); Katie Junak (Carpenter); Lucas Matchey (Carpenter); Caleb Poole (Carpenter); Randall J. Tranowski (Carpenter); Ashley Wisneski (Carpenter)