Cabaret - performed December 1995

By John Kander, Joe Masteroff & Fred Ebb

Performed with the kind permission of Musicscope

Director - Dennis Murfitt
Musical Director - Patience Ling
Choreography - Brenda Chapman, Sally Mann


(in order of appearance)

Master of Ceremonies (EMCEE) Andy Dyer
Clifford Bradshaw Christopher Mason
Ernst Ludwig Adrian Bolton
Customs Officer Peter Crotty
Fraulein Schneider Val Taylor
Fraulein Kost Thema Rayment
Herr Schultz Bob Wheatley
Telephone Girl Liz Butler
Sally Bowles Sarah McCarthy
Two Ladies Linda Gatt
Linda Harding
Max Bill Chapman
Gorilla Linda Gatt
Waiters Derek Butcher
Terry Cousins
Martin Rayner
Alan Wheeler
Waitresses Rosamund Pettett
Julie Rainford
German Sailors Dave Jeffries
Peter Crotty
Martin Rayner
Two Nazis Derek Butcher
Alan Wheeler
Kit-Kat Girls Jo Simons
Liz Butler
Linda Gatt
Hannah Harding
Julie Rainford
Rosamund Pettett
Helen Yellop
Frau Kruger Jane Cousins
Frau Wendel Jenny Glayzer

Production Team

Val Taylor, Jude Hussey, Derek Butcher, Alan Mills, Bruce Emeny, Nancy Galsworthy, Viv Wheatley, Sarah Paynter, Sue Smith, Alison Baker, Jenny Glayzer, Chris Wheeler, Dennis Murfitt, Bill Chapman, Greg Garrad, Geoff Taylor, Maurice Barber, Peggy Barber, Patience Ling, and other volunteers not mentioned.

The Musical

As the Nazis begin their rise to power in Germany in the late 1920s, American writer Clifford Bradshaw visits Berlin. After making a few friends and finding housing, Clifford visits the sleazy Kit Kat Club and meets an English singer, Sally Bowles. The writer and singer soon fall in love. Meanwhile, Clifford's elderly landlord, Fraulein Schneider, gets engaged to a Jewish greengrocer, Herr Schultz not an easy decision given the increasing influence of the Nazis. Soon, Clifford discovers that he has been inadvertently helping the Nazis by delivering packages to Paris for a German friend of his, Ernst Ludwig. Clifford ends up deciding to return to the United States but Sally, after aborting their baby, decides to remain in Berlin.


Manifest Theatre's latest production was, I thought before the curtain opened, a shade ambitious. Cabaret is not an easy musical. And when I looked in the programme my heart sank - there was to be no band, just a piano and percussion. As the lights went down I felt more than slightly apprehensive.
How delighted I am, therefore, to report that this is a stunning production. From the moment that the Kit-Kat Club's MC takes the stage one knows that it's going to work.

Andy Dyer has got the part exactly right, brilliantly evoking Berlin during its most decadent, seedy and beguiling period, and he plays the role with the confidence and power it demands. At the other end of the social scale, Val Taylor is simply superb as the lonely yet pragmatic Fraulein Schneider, drifting through life with a resignation as poignant as it is profound. Taylor excels herself again and again in the show, she displays an acting ability and presence which is rarely seen in professional provincial theatre, let alone amateur, and it is a pleasure to watch her.
The rest of the cast deal with their parts extremely competently, and although almost everyone lies in the shadow of Dyer and Taylor - talent is clearly abundant here. It's true that the music is slightly inadequate simply because lack of volume - when Sarah MacCarthy belts out the title number one really longs for a pit-band - but in fact the piano and drums of Patience Ling and Paul Scott seem more fitting to some of the more serious numbers.
All in all, Manifest have shown that which is so often lacking in Amateur dramatics; here is a show where the participants have focused on the entirety of the theatrical experience, not just their own role within it. Various talents have come together, fitted in with each other and provided cracking entertainment.
R.G. Ashworth

Vintage show worth repeating

THE Manifest theatre Group has celebrated the tenth anniversary of its own theatre in Manningtree with a vintage production. Under the direction of Dennis Murfitt, one of the founder members, the group decided to repeat Cabaret, their first musical and one of their most popular shows. Playing to packed houses all week, the group again displayed all the fine qualities for which it has rightly become renowned.
Set in Germany before the start of the Third Reich, the story has a little of everything drama, romance, pathos and comedy, with the added bonus of 21 musical numbers. The sight of Nazi Salutes may have stirred unwanted memories for older members of the audience but the backcloth of racial tensions would have had chill message for everyone, bearing in mind Bosnia and tribal conflicts in Africa.

There were powerful performances from Andy Dyer, Christopher Mason, Val Taylor, Bob Wheatley and Sarah McCarthy, ably back by Adrian Bolton, Thelma Rayment and a bevy of beauties. The only complaint would be the numerous scene changes, which ended to break the flow of the action.

Photo Shoot

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