Music by John Kander, lyrics by Fred Ebb, and book by Joe Masteroff
Directed by Sam Plattus
In a Berlin nightclub, as the 1920’s draw to a close, a garish Master of Ceremonies welcomes the audience and assures them they will forget all their troubles at the CABARET. Revel with Cliff and Sally in Weimar Berlin’s short-lived utopia of artistic and technological invention, democracy, and sexual freedom, and witness the swift and terrifying rise of Fascism that destroyed it. Featuring a cast of actor-musicians and brand new musical arrangements from The Harpers’ own award-winning writer & composer Jay Eddy, this is Cabaret as you’ve never seen it before.
PRAISE FOR The Harper's cabaret
"Bracingly original, astonishingly resourceful, and daringly theatrical. These are phrases I often associate with artists like John Doyle, Ivo Van Hoe, or Michael Arden, directors who reinvent and reinvigorate everything they touch. These aren’t phrases, however, I often associate with the local theater scene...Yet bracingly original, astonishingly resourceful and daringly theatrical is exactly how I’d describe the sublime and innovative production of 'Cabaret' offered by the new New Haven-based troupe The Harpers...Staged with unlimited inventiveness by Sam Plattus...It’s one of the smartest and most beguiling shows I’ve seen in a long time...you can’t help but feel a twinge of nausea and, at the same time, realize exactly why this specific production of this specific play is of vital importance in 2018. There are moments of genius here that make me very excited that a group like this has landed in New Haven. I’ll be eagerly awaiting whatever comes next." - Noah Golden, OnStage
"In this Harpers’ production, Cabaret has been stripped down to brutal and brilliant effect...Eight [sic.] performers play 20 parts in a staging that virtuosically shifts from night club burlesque to transnational train car to boarding house bedroom with all the dynamism of The 39 Steps." - E.A. McMullen, New Haven Independent
"The small cast and small space intensifies the weird sensuality of the trashy club, and the mounting political tension outside of it...Even in the pretend world of theater, the close walls and small stage of Lyric Hall Theater made the specter of fascism incredibly real." - Karen Marks, The Arts Paper
"It’s a rasping hoot of a show, deconstructing sacred musical theater values and crassly dramatizing the breakdown of society and government...The result can be coarse, abrasive and a little bit brilliant...Though some of the treasured Kander/Ebb songs are sung fairly straight, most are meted out in an unmelodious manner that might best be appreciated by fans of Tom Waits, Nick Cave or James Chance...The Harpers’ Cabaret is a coarse, caterwauling social satire about a deteriorating society. I hope it finds the up-for-anything audience it deserves." - Christopher Arnott, Hartford Courant