The Mount St. Joseph University Drama Club would like to invite you to a brand new event: the University’s first ever Benefit Cabaret, a selection of performances by Mount students, and alumni. On April 7 the Drama Club will present a variety of acts involving singing, dancing, and theater by individuals, small groups, and the Drama Club itself.
The seeds for the Cabaret were planted long ago. Drama Club member Sara Croswell says she remembers very early on in her freshman year being approached to sign a petition to allow the school to perform musicals again, which hadn’t been done since 2011. Unfortunately, according to Croswell, it was one of the things that had to be cut from the Mount’s budget. The students, however, were determined to find a way to bring them back.
Nothing seemed to be working, yet. In the fall of 2016, the Drama Club did a production of I Am a Camera, the 1951 Broadway play adapted for the stage by John Van Druten from the novel Goodbye to Berlin by Christopher Isherwood. The play is better known, however, for its 1966 musical adaptation, Cabaret by Joe Masteroff. Fittingly, after the curtain went down, the cast performed various songs from the popular musical, to the audience’s delight. The club members came up with an idea and devised a plan.
There needed to be an opportunity that would allow the Mount to show off its talent as well as raise funds for the Drama Club to produce musicals again. From this, the Benefit Cabaret was born. The students appointed roles based on their areas of expertise.
Tiffany Nascimento (who played Fräulein Schneider in I Am a Camera and sang “Maybe This Time” afterwards) is the director. She has been involved in choir most of her life, and she has been director and assistant director for several productions, and was vice president of the McAuley High School Drama Club. The Mount Benefit Cabaret will be her 22nd theatrical production. Croswell (who played Natalia Landauer) is the choreographer. She has been dancing since preschool, has been in eight shows, and choreographed four. Drama Club newcomer Luke Danis is the musical director. Luke has been training vocally since high school, and has done three musicals. The students invited all of the Mount Community to come and perform.
The community was more than eager to help out. Alumni Aimée Ward and Garrett Liete (who played Sally Bowles and Christopher Isherwood in I Am a Camera) will be singing “The Next Ten Minutes” from The Last Five Years. The members of the Drama Club will be performing four popular musical numbers -- “Seasons of Love” from Rent, “Cell Block Tango” from Chicago, and “Bless the Lord” from Godspell, as well as a surprise finale.
“We want the performing arts to hold a more profound presence on this campus,” says Nascimento, “and continue to grow from its roots into the future and long after Luke, Sara, and myself have all graduated.”
The Mount Benefit Cabaret will take place on Saturday, April 7, at 7:00 p.m. in theater. Early bird tickets can be purchased for $3 with a Mount ID or for $5 by contacting Betsy Jones at 513-244-4863 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets can also be purchased at the door for $5 with a Mount ID or for $7. I urge you to join us for our new journey. As Joe Masteroff wrote, “What good is sitting alone in your room? Come hear the music play.”