Embodying the Song: Creating Cabaret
Creating Cabaret Workshop
Cabaret is not so much about the vocal quality of the performer. It’s about the power and emotion of the delivery, and seeing that performer connecting to the song. It’s about the physicality of the performer. And about building a story around the songs. The challenge of Cabaret is to create a through line and a narrative that grips the audience and pulls them into each song. And if that story is important to you, then it’s going to transform how you perform those songs. The thrill of Cabaret is that you are allowed to embody the character, and create characters, for every song you perform. In this workshop we will learn how to find those characters and use the whole body as we sing.
What I can give: I started out singing in punk rock bands. Then I switched to classical music, and opera. I graduated from McGill music with a degree in Opera, twice attended the Banff Centre for New Music, studied in New York and sang professionally in New York City. Then I decided to quit. I found the drudge of auditioning too hard. I picked out a program in arts administration, but before I enrolled, my wife said 'why don’t you finally write that little one man show you’ve been talking about for son long'. This turned out to be a Cabaret about a man’s obsession with Kurt Weill, and that show turned into a hit which I toured across North America and Europe. It changed my life. Since then, for the last twenty years, I’ve been exploring stories in Cabaret. I’ve toured around the world, from Moscow to Paris to the Edinburgh Festival and across North America. I’ve taken stories, some of them from history, some of them imagined, some of them from my own life, and I’ve created shows that made people cry, made people laugh and made people think differently about the world. One was such a success that I’ve been touring it around the world for 10 years.
I believe that Cabaret is a unique place where you can bring music and stories and ideas to life. You can take songs and reinterpret them so people hear them again. You can cross over the boundary of the fourth wall and literally put yourself in someone’s lap. You can perform Cabaret in every kind of venue, no matter how large or small. You can touch people so personally by connecting songs and stories, especially if those stories are ones you believe in, ones that you’ve lived. And cabaret is the most open musical-theatre performing style around. Because it’s all based on your creativity. Cabaret is a place that is open to all voices and genders, and a place where performers of all ages can find their voice.
In this Workshop, we'll work together to find how your story and your songs can combine on stage to create a powerful impact. We'll uncover the physicality of your natural movements and discover how they add to the impact of a song. We'll find the story that matters to you and how that can weave through a set of songs putting them into focus. We'll find how the songs can add to the power of your own story.