Silhouette Stages is best known for its spectacular musical productions. However, every once in a while, they like to give some of their talented members a chance to shine on their own by presenting us with a fun night of cabaret entertainment.
I had the opportunity in advance to ask the president of Silhouette Stages, Jeremy Goldman, some questions about the Cabaret Night that was performed on Saturday, February 3 at Slayton House in Columbia.
Susan Brall: How long has Silhouette Stages been doing a Cabaret Night?
Jeremy Goldman: Silhouette Stages has been doing Cabaret Night since 2004, so this is our 14th year hosting this event. This February 2018 Cabaret is our 40th Cabaret Night!
Why did you decide to do Cabaret Night?
We started this event to showcase local talent and to give the community some previews of upcoming community theater productions. Just as important, this event gives people an opportunity to perform in a low-pressure environment and gives our audience the chance to relax and enjoy some great entertainment at a very affordable ticket price.
Who will be performing and how did you choose these performers? Are they people from your productions? Are they mostly from Howard County? Do they have to audition?
Our Cabaret nights are open to any person and any group. We publish a performance application on our website and Facebook page, which is submitted to us online. For the most part, we select performers on a first-come, first-served basis. There is no audition required and no experience necessary. We always perform two songs from an upcoming Silhouette Stages production, and we have many former cast members come back to perform. While many are from the Howard County area, we do have performers from all over the Baltimore metro area.
How will the music be provided? Live? Recorded?
For our singers and dancers, the choice of music is completely up to the performers. Some performers use our provided piano accompanist, while other performers feel more comfortable performing to a recording.
Is there a theme to this show, e.g. Broadway tunes, country, or do the performers decide themselves?
The performers submit an act of their choice. We always encourage upbeat songs and performances to make the evening as entertaining and high-energy as possible, but ultimately this evening belongs to the performers.
Is it only singing or will you have dancers, comics, magicians, acrobats or other types of acts?
Yes, we have a wide variety of acts, though the majority are singers. In the past we have had dancers, jugglers, stand-up comedians, magicians, acapella and barbershop groups, and more. This event also features a wide range in ages of our performers – in the past we have had performers in middle school and others who have been performing for decades. We always looking to make this event as diverse as possible and encourage all types of performers to send in an application!
Does the audience sit at tables? Is it a small room or a larger theater or auditorium?
The event occurs at Slayton House Theater, the same venue where our productions are held. However, while our productions feature seating in rows, the cabaret nights are round tables. The venue holds about 125 people with our round table setup.
Where, when and what time will the Cabaret Night be presented?
Our three annual Cabaret nights are always on Saturdays in September, February, and April at 8 PM. In 2018, the dates are February 3, April 21, and September 22.
What is the price of admission and how can someone buy them?
Our general admission Cabaret ticket is $12 per person. Tickets are available online or in person on the evening of the event. However, I would mention that these Cabaret nights almost always sell out prior to the event, so we strongly encourage people to purchase their tickets in advance online.
The show was great fun. The performers included the following: Megan Mostow, Jeremy Goldman & Taylor Washington, Andrew Gurtshaw and Chip Willett, Anna Pollitt, Claire Mitchell, Sarah Moon, Matt Wetzel, Lindsey Litka, Caitlin Fagan, Nick Ruth, Kay-Megan Washington, Kory Tvedt, Brooke Webster and Debbie Mobley, Stephanie Ichniowski, Angel Duque. Also performing were Katie Sheldon and the cast of Sweet Charity coming April 13 to the Heritage players doing “I’m a Brass Band,” the cast from Hammond High School’s upcoming show, The Wedding Singer, on March 1, singing “Come Out of the Dumpster” and the cast from Silhouette Stages’ next production, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, opening March 9. They chose “Pretty Little Picture” and Everybody Ought to have a Maid” as a sneak preview.
Rounding out Cabaret Night were two snappy dance pieces by Genesis Arts. Elisa Poole did a perfect job accompanying many of the performers on piano. Masters of ceremonies Rich Greenslit and Jeremy Goldman were very capable. Even when there was a glitch in the sound system, things ran smoothly thanks to their “schtick.” There were songs from Rent, Frozen, Cabaret, Godspell and several other wonderful musicals. My two personal favorites were Goldman and Washington’s “Tango Maureen” from Rent and “Anything You Can Do I Can Do Better” from Annie Get Your Gun with Mobley dressed as Annie Oakley and Webster as Annie (from the musical Annie).
I encourage those who would like to showcase their talent to go to the website and apply for the next show. If you are like myself and leave your singing to the shower, do come to the next Cabaret Night on April 21. Tonight’s performance was sold out. So, buy your tickets early. Silhouette Stages never disappoints.