Mid City Theater is taking a bold step this month with March being billed as "Cabaret Month" at the small venue normally associated with stage productions like "Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson" and "The Divine Sister."
If the truth be known, cabaret is in the blood of sound designer and general manager Su Gonzcy, who worked over a decade for Barbara Motley at Le Chat Noir before it closed in 2011. Mid City Theater owner Fred Nuccio worked with Gonzcy at the highly regarded True Brew Theater in the 1990s, where their love of cabaret and small theater venues was first honed.
The cabaret experience with its more intimate performances and focus on single personalities differs from ensemble theater work in many ways. Oftentimes the audience has a feel of a direct connection with the performer and songs that may have been heard as previously sung in a Broadway show or as a pop tune will take on new meaning and variations.
Cabaret Month began two nights ago a performance by a trio of singers titled "The 'Quarter' Rat Pack" starring Marshall Harris, Jason George and Robert Fascio. Last night performer Jennifer Blades started the ball rolling with her show titled "My Funny Valentine."
Tonight, pianist and singer Roland "Butch" Caire will join with singer Amy Alvarez to sing songs of the Beatles with "The Beatles: Love, Love Love (yeah, yeah, yeah)." This is a show composed primarily of love songs, which they presented once before this past fall at the Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts. Alvarez, a cabaret singer who has previously been paired with pianist and vocalist Jefferson Turner and singer and actor Jimmy Murphy, has been very supportive of the cabaret experience. According to Gonzcy it was Alvarez's suggestion to her that resulted in the month of cabaret performances.
An open microphone night for all cabaret star wannabes takes place tomorrow night at 7:30.
This Tuesday and Wednesday cabaret performer Anais St. John unveils a new show, an homage to legendary star Lola Falana, also known as the "First Lady of Las Vegas." St. John, who has a steady gig at the Hyatt Regency on weekends, is looking forward to familiarizing her audiences with some of the routines and songs Falana popularized on the Vegas strip, where she was the first woman to earn $1,000,000 per year. The show starts at 8:00 p.m. and tickets are $20 each.
Harry Mayronne, Jr. will bring his trio into Mid City Theater along with singer Dorian Rush on March 9. The next night, March 10, M. I. Scoggin is set to present her tribute to "The Little Sparrow of Paris" called "Soiree Edith Piaf." Each of these shows cost $15, but reserved seat V.I.P. tickets for the Scoggin show are available only by phone (504-488-1460) at $20 each.
Southern Repertory Theatre will present its continuing series of plays titled "3X3" at Mid City on March 11 and 12. Playwright Pat Bourgeois' "Debauchery" continues the next night on March 13. Both presentations will have cabaret themes and cost $10 each (cash at the door). "3x3" starts at 8:00 p.m., while "Debauchery begins at 7:30 p.m.
Other shows later in the month include the "Running with Scissors Cabaret Presentation": "Kiki le Bon Bon's Cabaret Risqué" on March 15,16 and 17. Singer Bremner Duthie's tribute show to Kurt Weill follows on March 19
The month ends with "An Evening With..." Rich Look on March 20; a Tribute to Hal David starring singers Wanda Rouzan and Leah Chase on March 21. The final show will be a remounting of Lisa Picone's Big Easy Award winning "Lisa Sings Lee," a tribute to the music of singer Peggy Lee.
For more information call during regular box office hours at 504-488-1460 or book online by clicking here.