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Broadway Sessions and theBestArts College Cabaret Series - Class of 2011

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The Offer

If your musical theatre program holds a senior showcase in NYC during Winter/Spring 2011, theBestArts is interested in hearing from you. I will select a limited number of programs, and then work with them to produce a special cabaret with seniors and several "headliner" alums at the Midtown Theatre in New York City. Performers will be given a videotape of their performance, and I will post them on YouTube and on theBestArts website. There are no costs involved; cover is free for performers and audience members alike.

Past Success: 2010 CMU Cabaret

On March 12 2010, I produced a concert with Carnegie Mellon students and alums at the Laurie Beechman Theatre in New York City. The event was an incredible success and included unforgettable performances. Five headliner alums participated: Matthew Scott (Sondheim on Sondheim, A Catered Affair, Jersey Boys), Hunter Ryan Herdlicka (A Little Night Music), Sara Jean Ford (Finian's Rainbow, The Fantasticks, Phantom of the Opera), Kirsten Scott (Hairspray) and Tommar Wilson (Hair, Lestat, Never Gonna Dance, Hairspray, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The Music Man). They were joined by members of the CMU senior class, several other alums, and a CMU sophomore. Nick Cosgrove, CMU senior, co-produced the event.

Due to the success of last year's event, we are hosting CMU again on March 10, 2011. We hope to expand to other colleges this spring as well.

Event Goals

Goals for each event include:

  • help seniors network with top alums from their program
  • give seniors and alums the chance to perform in a NYC nightclub for their friends
  • provide performers with a great video for their portfolios
  • give senior class members a lasting memory as their time together moves to a close

I find that alums are very interested and willing to support seniors from their program by participating in an event like this if their schedule allows.

The Details

Seniors should discuss this idea together and see if class members are interested in the idea. I need a minimum of six senior participants to go forward; more is better. The event will be held on the Thursday night of your showcase week at 11:00pm. Headliner alums and seniors perform first.

For the spring 2011 college cabaret series, theBestArts is working with "Broadway Sessions", a well-established weekly event. Our venue is the Midtown Theatre at 163 W. 46th St. The Midtown has cabaret seating (tables) for about 200, with a bar and appetizer menu. Doors open at 10:30pm (may be 10:00; I'll verify) and performances start at 11:00pm. Seating is general admission, but we'll reserve tables for confirmed headliners and seniors. Our music director is accomplished Broadway pianist/composer/lyricist Will Van Dyke (THE ADDAMS FAMILY, WICKED First Nat'l Tour); our host for each event is Ben Cameron (WICKED, AIDA, FOOTLOOSE).

Headliners will typically perform first, but we'll accommodate their schedules. Seniors are up next, followed by any other program students or alums in the audience who want to sing. After everyone connected to the program has performed, it turns into a general open-mic night for other audience members until 2:00am.

If You're Interested: Please Act Quickly

Because of the late date, I need to know which colleges are interested as soon as possible. Each college should do the following:

  • Discuss the idea within the class.
  • Select a senior contact for theBestArts; this individual will receive co-producer credit at the event and on theBestArts. They will be responsible for recruiting seniors to perform.
  • Develop a prioritized list of program alums as proposed headliners. If seniors have personal contacts with the alums, please provide the specifics. Help with recruitment of headliners is appreciated.
  • Send a brief informal proposal to me ASAP at .

I look forward to hearing from you soon!