Welcome to McElrath Cabaret–We hope you enjoy our cabaret blog!
This is a Hal David/Burt Bachrach Medley performed by the Carpenters–what wonderful songs and what a glimpse into the 1970s. Hal David’s official website, Burt Bachrach’s unofficial website, and the official website for The Carpenters–enjoy!
Hi! Wednesday is the day of the week when we at McElrath Cabaret post a cabaret question for the consideration of our readers. The questions have something to do with cabaret, in all its many aspects.
We encourage you to send us any cabaret question that you have that you would like us to pose to the group! You can leave a question in the comments section below, or you can email it to us at kjandathenacabaret [at]gmail.com. Just fill in the [at] with the @ symbol—we need to foil the spam bots, don’cha know.
This week’s question is: What do you do to stay fresh in between cabaret shows?
If I find myself in a bit of a lull in between gigs, I always try to stay busy and work on improving myself and my knowledge of cabaret and entertainment. For example, I recently watched Uta Hagen’s Acting Class video, which is available on Netflix, for a little refresher course in method acting. Re-reading books on acting is also very helpful for the cabaret artist who wants to improve his or her acting skills so that they can really lift the lyrics of the songs they perform in a meaningful way. Going to see some live theatre in your town is a great way to see what others are doing to tell compelling stories onstage, and apply what you learn from the observations to your own practice as applied to singing.
This is also a great time to use in researching some new songs. A visit to your local library, or a college music library, or the music department of a large city library may yield Broadway show scores, and a host of other sheet music and even CDs for you to check out, so you can widen your knowledge base of potential material that might be right for you to perform.
I am a lover of biographies. I find myself drawn to the life stories of the greats in all fields of entertainment, but particularly those who left a mark in cabaret’s early years in this country. Several came from great poverty, and at the time they likely had no clue how famous and what an impact they would have on the art form of cabaret, and I find that inspirational.
I also like to look to other art forms for inspiration for new shows. I recently saw my friend’s one-woman autobiographical show, Suburban Tribe by Kate Mura, in which she cleverly used Commedia del’Arte masks to help her portray the many characters that she brought to life onstage. Very interesting presentation that drew the audience in to her compelling story. I love to look at coffeetable art books for inspiration as well. Another fun activity to help you stay fresh is to visit your local art museums–a work by a particular artist might really speak to you, and you might think of a connection to the artwork that you could use in your next show.
I also try to network and meet new people who might be interested in cabaret. This can be done online, and it’s also very helpful to get out and support other cabaret artists in your area by seeing their shows. Sue Matsuki, in her Cabaret Hotline Online column from a while back, suggests that you say hello to the artist after the show, hand them your business card and ask to be put on his or her mailing list. If you show an interest in what others in the field are doing, they may respond in kind.
What do you like to do to stay fresh in between cabaret shows? I can’t wait to hear what your responses are to today’s question, so let me know down in the comments here.
You can also leave a comment on LinkedIn, Google+, Facebook or Twitter. And you can always feel free to drop us a line, either in the comments below or send us a direct email, and let us know a cabaret question that you would like us to ask, and we’ll do our best to include it in an upcoming Wednesday post.
I truly look forward to your joining the conversation with your comments! We value each of our readers very much, and hope to entertain you and give you a place to come and learn more about cabaret.
We appreciate your support!
Till next time,
ps–The Cabaret Soiree Link Party is still going strong–you can visit anytime to click on the links and see what others have posted, or you can share your own recent cabaret blog or cabaret website link from now through Thursday. Link is below.
Weekly Post Lineup At McElrath Cabaret:
Tuesdays: Cabaret Tip Tuesday
Wednesdays: Ask A Cabaret Question
Thursdays: Featured Cabaret Blog, Website, Performer
Fridays: Cabaret Through Time