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Wednesday, February 28, 2001

Since 1990 Your First, Best, and Only Source of Cabaret News

It it's anything to do with cabaret, you'll probably read it here first!

In just a few hours MARCH IS CABARET MONTH will be here - and I am scurrying to update my web pages and prepare a listing of all the CABARET MONTH events around the country. I have already posted the Boston update, and eagerly await word from other areas regarding any special activities in the works.

Meantime, I am back from a quick trip to Boston, where on Monday night the BACA (Boston Association of Cabaret Artists - held a Media Showcase - inviting all the newspaper, magazine, TV & Radio writers to see performers who would be doing a show in the Boston area during CABARET MONTH. The BACA folks have really been working hard to get increased press coverage in their area of cabaret events, and this special show, held at LYRIC STAGE (140 Clarendon Street, Boston, MA - 617-437-7172) was just the ticket.

On Saturday night, March 3rd, I plan to be at JUDY'S CHELSEA (169 Eighth Avenue, NYC - 212-929-5410) when Judy Kreston and David Lahm present their new show celebrating their past 10 years of performing at JUDY'S. Showtime is 8:30 pm, and I advise you to reserve early. The show will be performed every Saturday night in March at JUDY'S CHELSEA.

This coming Sunday, March 4th, I will be part of a panel discussion on cabaret and CABARET MONTH along with Scott Siegel (BACK STAGE - and Wayman Wong (NY DAILY NEWS) on David Kenney's "Everything Old is New Again" radio show on WBAI 99.5 FM and on the Internet at The show will also feature the music of Ethel Waters, as well as four renditions of John Bucchino's "It Feels Like Home" with performances by Bill Wright, Nancy LaMott, Lee Lessack and Daisy Prince. Be sure to tune in. The show is heard here in NYC from 9:00 to 11:00 pm - the panel discussion is currently scheduled for part of the first hour of the show.

And, of course, on Monday night, March 5th, I will be at the BACK STAGE Magazine Bistro Awards Gala at THE SUPPER CLUB (240 West 47th Street, NYC). The Awards Gala kicks off "Cabaret Month" in New York City. It begins with a reception at 5:00 pm with Jerry Scott at the piano, followed by the awards presentation and show at 6:30 pm. BACK STAGE Editor-in-Chief Sherry Eaker is producing and hosting the event along with Back Stage cabaret critics John Hoglund, David Finkle, and Barbara & Scott Siegel. Comedian Jim David is guest emcee, and the show is under the direction of Thomas Mills. I'll be there with one or two special friends, and I hope to see many of my readers there as well.

The Bistro Awards Gala is the premiere cabaret awards show in NYC, and a very limited number of tickets are available at $60.00. You can purchase them at the offices of BACK STAGE (770 Broadway, 6th Floor, NYC), by credit card (646-654-5740) or via their website ( But you better hurry!

Be sure to head to your favorite newsstand tonight or tomorrow and pick up the new issue of BACK STAGE magazine - the spotlight is on cabaret, with more about the BACK STAGE Bistro Awards, plus a special article on "How to Attract an Audience." This will also be the topic of a panel discussion at DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788) presented by BACK STAGE on Tuesday, March 13th, moderated by David Finkle, John Hoglund and Barbara & Scott Siegel, and featuring James Beaman, Charles Cermele, Baby Jane Dexter, Natalie Gamsu, Sidney Myer and Laura Davis. The room opens at 5:00 pm - and the discussion starts at 5:30 running until 7:30 pm. Call BACK STAGE at 646-654-5723 and leave your name & phone number (don't call DON'T TELL MAMA) for reservations - these special events usually are sold out, so don't wait.

Later this month, on Friday, March 9th the Washington DC cabaret organization, DCCN (DC Cabaret Network) will be presenting "A Cabaret Celebration II" in association with Arlington Arts. The show will feature a number of DC's most accomplished cabaret performers including Terri Allen, Wendy Lane Bailey, Doug Bowles, Bev Cosham, Russel Fox, and Tim Tourbin. They will be joined by special guest host, MAC award winning performer Richard Skipper as Carol Channing. DC favorite George Fulginiti-Shakar will provide musical direction. The show begins at 8:00 PM at the SPECTRUM THEATRE (1601 Kent Street, Rosslyn, VA). Tickets are $15.00 and may be obtained by calling 703-218-6500 or by visiting I was at "A Cabaret Celebration I" last November, and hope to get to DC for this one as well.

So you can see, I am going to celebrate MARCH IS CABARET MONTH in a big way this year!

I hope you have take time to visit the CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE website ( often - and I hope that you clicked on a banner ad or two while you were there. Please remember that CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE is now an independent organization entirely supported by our website banner ads. I hope that many of you will support us by purchasing ads on the website - that way I can give as much time as possible to maintaining both the website and the newsletters. If you want information on BANNER ADVERTISING, just send me a note with the single word "Banner" in the subject line. The information will be sent to you automatically.

You can have a banner appearing at random on all 700+ pages of the website for 4 weeks for just $140.00. Compare this with the following rates we checked on for a single 1/2-page ad in the NYC area a while back: In SHOW BUSINESS WEEKLY, it's $673.00; in BACKSTAGE, it's $1,055.00, and in TIME OUT NEW YORK, it's $2,546.00! And those are weekly publications, tossed in the recycle bin at week's end. Meantime, CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE ( never gets stale. I keep adding new reviews and news items during the month, your ad is seen again and again by folks seriously interested in cabaret. When I last ran my stats, the pages were getting over 3000 visits a day!

If you want to experience a really super kick-off to MARCH IS CABARET MONTH, the fabulous Lina Koutrakos is appearing at the BOTTOM LINE (15 West 4th Street, NYC - 212-228-6300) on Thursday, March 1st in two shows, at 7:30 and 10:30 pm. The lady is fantastic, and her band is unbelievable.

I you missed the Off-Broadway show, "Cary and Gallo: What If We Did This?" which had its last performance on February 26th, the boys are taking it on the road, and will return to New York later this year. The show was a great success we hope they continue that success out of town. I will be letting you know when and where you can see it in your town soon. Check out all the details on

She will be accepting a BACK STAGE Magazine Bistro Award on Monday night the 5th, but she returns to JUDY'S CHELSEA (169 Eighth Avenue, NYC - 212-929-5410 - this Friday at 8:30 pm with her fantastic "Dancing" show. I'm talking about Audrey Lavine, and she is also at JUDY'S CHELSEA on Fridays the 9th & 16th - along with her musical director Ross Patterson. If you want to see what an award winning show is all about, catch this one - if perfection is possible, this is it!

Steven Santoro has just released a new jazz CD called "Soul of the Night." Steven Santoro? Well, you might know him as Steven Kowalczyk, who has performed at EIGHTY EIGHT'S and THE FIREBIRD CAFE - but now he is going by his other family name, and you can buy his CD at either or

Lucille Carr-Kaffashan will give two more performances of her show, "Once In a Blue Moon," at DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788), the first on Friday, March 16th at 8:00 pm, and the second on Saturday, March 31st at 5:00 pm. David Brunetti is the musical director.

"That's My New York," an original musical revue by lyricist Jay Jeffries and composer John McMahon, about relationships in all their quirky glory, will open at JUDY'S CHELSEA (169 Eighth Avenue, NYC - 212-929-5410 - on Monday night, March 12th at 8:30 pm, and run every Monday through April 30th. The cast of four includes Kimlee Hicks and Traci Reynolds, well known for their celebrated solo shows at clubs such as ROSE'S TURN and DON'T TELL MAMA; Marcus Kettles, a veteran of many Off Broadway productions; and Maurice Villa-Lobos, whose most recent credit is The Roundabout Theatre Company's long-running production of CABARET. Kelly Briggs is the director.

If I could be two places at once on a Friday, one of those places would always be "The Next Big Broadway Musical" every Friday at 8:30 pm at DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788 - It is a show of musical improvisation featuring some of the most talented singer/comics in town - and there is never a dull moment. Hosted by the vocally challenged Ron Poole (thankfully they don't let him sing), the show stars Ross Aseron, Matthew Loren Cohen, Samuel D. Cohen, Adam Felber, Lynn Marie Hulsman, Debora Rabbai and Christine Turner.

This Saturday, March 3rd, the radio show "Words & Music," hosted by Spider Saloff and broadcast on Saturdays at 7:00 pm on WFMT-FM (98.7) in the Chicago area, as well as radio stations around the world and on the internet at, will feature the songs of the songs of Rodgers & Hammerstein. The show will include "Oh What A Beautiful Morning," My Favorite Things," and Shall We Dance."

Spider will be performing in a character comedy piece, with some music presented in workshop for possible theater debut later this year. The show also features Jeremy Kahn at the piano and is directed by NY stage veteran, Greg Fellows and will run at DAVENPORT'S (1383 North Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago, IL - 773-278-1830 - on Fridays, March 2nd, 16th and 23rd at 8:00 pm.

And on Sunday, March 4th at 8:00 pm, the Spider Saloff Quartet will be performing at VOLTAIRE (3441 North Halsted Street, Chicago, IL - 773-281-9320) with sets till midnight.

Also celebrating MARCH IS CABARET MONTH, the award-winning "Jamie deRoy & friends" will have two shows in March at THE WEST BANK CAFE/LAURIE BEECHMAN THEATER (407 West 42nd Street, NYC - 212-695-6909). Shows are on Saturdays at 8:30 pm, and feature Rod Hausen as Musical Director and Barry Kleinbort as Director. Guests on Saturday March 3rd are Mark Coffin, Jenifer Kruskamp, Sidney Myer, Paige Price, Gregg Rodeheffer and Sal Viviano. Jamie's guests on Saturday March 10th are Mario Cantone, Kim Cea, Colette Hawley, Craig Rubano, Karen Saunders and Marcus Simeone.

Phillip Officer and Barbara Brussell join forces to present an evening of song at THE PLUSH ROOM at the York Hotel (940 Sutter Street, San Francisco, CA - 415-885-2800 - on Monday, March 19th at 8:00 pm. Phillip will be accompanied by Mike Greensill, and Barbara by Christopher Marlowe. The show will spotlight the American Popular Songbook's most celebrated composers & lyricists.

You have just one more chance to see Aaron Lee Battle's show "Step Right Up" on Sunday, March 11th at 6:00 pm at JUDY'S CHELSEA (169 Eighth Avenue, NYC - 212-929-5410 - The show is directed by Eric Michael Gillett, with musical direction by the 2001 Back Stage BISTRO AWARD winning Mark Hartman. The show covers the ups, down and exciting moments in Aaron's career. A review of this show by Barb & Scott Siegel will soon be found on the CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE ( website.

"Midway Point" starring Stacy Lee Tilton, reveals the inner thoughts and outward actions of a group of women at the crossroads of their lives. It is a wonderful multi-faceted show and will be presented at DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788) on Sundays, March 4th & 11th at 6:00 pm. Under the direction of Thomas Mills and David Brunetti, Stacy will perform songs by Jason Robert Brown, Michael John LaChiusa, Tom Lehrer, Alan Menken & David Spencer, Brian Lasser, Stephen Flaherty & Lynn Ahrens and various others.

Bob Moreen will be appearing at the piano at GENTRY ON STATE (440 North State Street, Chicago, IL - 312-836-0933) on Thursdays, March 1st, 8th and 29th from 5:30 until 8:30 pm.

You can treat yourself to the lush vocal sounds of handsome John DePalma when he appears for two shows only on Friday, March 2nd at 9:00 pm and Saturday, March 3rd at 8:00 pm at DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788 -, along with musical director James Followell and band. These shows will be recorded live for a CD.

L. Egan D'Ivori, pianist/composer/vocalist and Elizabeth Anne, vocalist will be performing at 22 BELOW CABARET (155 East 22nd Street, NYC) on Saturday, March 10th at 8:30 pm. Their show is called "A Century of Life & Love, " and features original love and topical songs in various 20th century popular styles concerning life throughout the 1900s. Shawn and Kim Norton direct.

Congratulations to BRANDY'S PIANO BAR (235 East 84th Street, NYC - 212-744-4949 -! In addition to being named one of the "Top 25 Bars We Are Thankful For" by TIME OUT NY magazine last fall, Brandy's has just received the "2001 Award of Distinction" by Zagat! Owned by Joe Connell since 1985, Brandy's features an exceptional, multitalented group of performers - singers, pianists, actors, songwriters, recording artists, playwrights, producers, dancers, and directors! I was there a few weeks ago on a Saturday night and had a really great time. The place rocks 7 nights a week.

The West Coast cabaret organization CABARET WEST will present "Lew and the Night and the Music," a salute to songwriter Lew ("Nice 'N Easy," "That Face") Spence at THE CINEGRILL at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel (7000 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood, CA - 323-466-7000) on Monday, March 12th at 8:00 pm. Joining Lew in an evening of stories and songs will be Evelyn Halus and special guests Wesla Whitfield and Mike Greensill. Lew's songs have been recorded by Sinatra, Peggy Lee, Rosemary Clooney, Bobby Short and other greats and his collaborators include the Bergmans, Sammy Cahn, Paul Francis Webster, Bob Russell and Sammy Gallop.

Tommy Femia's Cabaret Month guest stars at his JUDY LIVE! show on Saturdays at 11:00 pm at DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788) are always-romantic Charles Cermele on March 3rd, simply terrific Teri-Lynn Paul on the 10th, the incomparable Sidney Myer in the 17th, brilliant newcomer Marcus Simeone on the 24th, and the delightful Patrick Boyd on the 31st. And I've run out of adjectives so I'm glad there are only 5 Saturdays in March.

Jim Caruso seems to be everywhere lately! Now I get word that he will be appearing at LIBBY'S CABARET (3401 Northside Parkway NW, Atlanta, GA - 404-237-1943 - for two weeks, March 7 through 17, Wednesday through Saturday. I spent a few hours in Atlanta last week on my way home from Miami, but only in the airport. Some day soon I want to head down there and see what this club is all about!

"I Heart New York" returns to DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788 - for four Mondays in March (5, 12, 19 and 26th) at 8:30 pm. If you want more information, check out Once again Diana B will be at the keys, with a cast that includes John Hartmann (of TV fame), Wanda Houston, Mandy Peek Jensen, Natasha Piletich and Joe Teig.

THE SUPPER CLUB at STEFANO'S (Worcester, MA - 508-752-6660) has another fabulous cabaret show this Saturday, March 3rd at 9:30 pm. Christopher Chew is a Boston-area cabaret and theatre performer. He recently appeared as the lead in Wachusett Theatre Company's DAMN YANKEES. Additionally, he is going to be appearing as the Padre in Worcester Foothill's Production of MAN OF LA MANCHA and he was in their inaugural production of A CHRISTMAS CAROL. Catch this great talent while you can!

This week's "Poole Party!" at DON'T TELL MAMA (343 West 46th Street, NYC - 212-757-0788) on Saturday, March 3rd at 8:30 pm features Karen Mack, Craig Coursey, Mark McCombs, Sidney Myer, Colette Hawley, Ron Poole, Shauna Lane, Suzanne Smith, Joanna Parson, Scott Barbarino and the Bev-Naps, and guest host Nancy Witter! I saw almost this same cast perform a few weeks ago, and it was a riot! McCombs is one of the most inventive people on the cabaret scene, and you simply must catch Karen Mack as she does stand-up comedy - the gals is a multi-talent! If fact, this just might be the best Poole Party this year!

If you are in the San Francisco area, don't miss the next "SONG OF THE MONTH CLUB" on Sunday, March 4th at MARTUNI'S (4 Valencia Street, San Francisco, CA - 415-241-0205) from 5:00 to 8:00 pm. Hosted by Mychelle Colleary, Lua Hadar, Linda Kosut and produced by Skip Ziobron, the SONG OF THE MONTH CLUB is a nurturing environment in which singers, songwriters, and musicians have an opportunity to perform new material, while building a strong and supportive network. Singers, songwriters, musicians and of course, music lovers are welcome. For more information, contact

The Josh Dodes Band has two very important dates, right at the start of March! On Friday, March 2nd, at 9:00 pm they will performer at STATE OF THE UNION (1357 "U" Street NW, Washington, DC - 202-588-8810) with Baltimore's Mycroft Holmes opening at 9:00 and the Josh and the band for two sets starting at 10:00 pm.

But the really big event is a VH1 live taping this Saturday, March 3rd at 9:30 pm at THE BITTER END (147 Bleecker Street, NYC - 212-673-7030) featuring Maiya Sykes and the original Dodes Band organist Adam Blau! with the group Almost Speechless opening at 8:30 pm. The taping is part of a VH1 major new series "Bands on the Run." VH1 selected The Josh Dodes Band as one of their four favorite unsigned bands in America and put them on the road last fall to tape their new series. The show debuts on VH1 on April 1st 2001 at 10:00 pm, and as the final stage, VH1 is filming each of the four bands playing in their home cities (the other three bands are from L.A., San Diego, and Dallas). Yes indeed, this is the same singer/songwriter/pianist who did his first NYC shows at THE DUPLEX and DON'T TELL MAMA - just a few short years ago! It is so satisfying to see a performer grow in style, popularity and fame - one of my real joys in covering cabaret for the past dozen years!

This is just a start - I plan to send out another issue of CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE on Friday or Saturday, so if you have news to share, send it on in. Meantime, on the CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE ( website: new reviews, news and an article from our very own cabaret gadfly, David McMann coming soon.

And that is just about the way it was.

Hugs & Stuff,


"... Stu Hamstra's breathless, gossipy e-mails are some of the best reading online." - H. Scott Jolley - TIME OUT NY - 10/19/00

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