WINNER - Special Award for Best Set (Bolton Evening News)
15th - 20th May 1995
Photographs by John Tustin
Production Officials
Director Irene Bowers
Musical Director J. Arnold Thornton
Choreographer Graham R. Edgington
Emcee Graham R. Edgington
Sally Bowles Vicki Smith
Clifford Bradshaw David Wilson
Ernst Ludwig David Perks
Fraulein Schneider Joyce Walters
Herr Schultz Harry Lee
Fraulein Kost Debbie Wild
Customs Officer Paul J. Duckworth
Telephone Girl Glenys Poole
Maitre D' Stanley Collinson
Bartender David Raistrick
Max Norman Bowers
Gorilla & Sailor Roger Higginbottom
Thug Gary Williams
Sailor Graham Yardley
Waiter Simon Yates
Two Ladies Wendy Bromiley, Julie Kirby
Kit Kat Girls
Wendy Bromiley, Julie Kirby, Joanne Almond, Carol Gannon, Hazel Gray, Dorothy Yardley
Doreen Healey, Yvonne Neary, Ruth Prescott, Betty Towler, Mike Booth, Paul Brennan, David Witt, Anita Cropper, Rebecca Driver, Julia Marsden, James R Edgington
  • Sally Bowles Sally Bowles
  • Clifford Bradshaw Clifford Bradshaw
  • Emcaa and Kit Kat Girls Emcaa and Kit Kat Girls
  • Fraulein Schneider and Herr Schultz "It Couldn't Please Me More" Fraulein Schneider and Herr Schultz "It Couldn't Please Me More"
  • Sally and the Kit Kat Girls Sally and the Kit Kat Girls
  • Sally and the Kit Kat Girls Sally and the Kit Kat Girls
  • "Telephone Song" "Telephone Song"
  • Fraulein Kost and Sailor Fraulein Kost and Sailor
  • Fraulein Schneider and Clifford Fraulein Schneider and Clifford
  • Sally and Clifford Sally and Clifford
  • Emcee "Wilkommen" Emcee "Wilkommen"
  • Ernst Ludwig in the club Ernst Ludwig in the club
  • Herr Schultz and Fraulein Kost Herr Schultz and Fraulein Kost
  • "Two Ladies" "Two Ladies"
  • Kit Kat Girls Kit Kat Girls

  • Bolton Evening News Review
  • NODA North West News Review
As the androgynous Emcee, Graham R Edgington excels among a cast in which excellence is the norm. From the minute he strikes his first posture, Edgington embodies the decadence of Berlin as it succumbs to Nazism. He is a malevolent observer of the foibles and evil of men and is chillingly effective in songs like 'If You Could See Her' with its horrendously cruel punchline. It's a masterly performance combining comedy, acting, singing and dancing skills and the rest of the cast do well to stay in his league.

But thanks to superb direction from Irene Bowers they do and the result is a remarkable production by this BEN award-winning society. Edgington has also choreographed the show and uses the dancers to admirable effect.

Vicki Smith is an attractive and spirited Sally Bowles, achieving just the right mixture of sophistication and vulnerability. As the idealistic Clifford, David Wilson provides the perfect foil for her restless charm. Beautifully judged performances come from Joyce Walters (Fraulein Schneider) and and Herr Schultz (Harry Lee) as the mature lovers caught up in the Nazi horror. David Perks is a wholly believable Ernst, an early convert to Nazism.

The tawdry glamour of the Kit Kat Club — illuminated by flashing lights spelling the word Cabaret before the show starts — is captured brilliantly. Filling part of the auditorium with tables and chairs for the performers helps the illusion. And the use of blown-up photographs of the period during the show enhances the realism.

The production is a credit to all involved and confirms Walmsley's position as being among the best societies in town.

Doreen Crowther
For her first production Irene Bowers tackled what must be one of the most difficult and dramatic shows on which to cut one's directorial teeth. The ambience of this show, depicting the decline of the old society via unemployment, deprivation and despair into decadence and immorality in pre-Nazi Germany was well judged by the producer and principals alike.

From the first dramatic appearance of Emcee played by Graham Edgington, the whole tone of the show was set. This was an excellent performance of the sinister Emcee by Graham, who was also responsible for the choreography. An excellent performance was also given by David Wilson in the difficult role of the naive Clifford Bradshaw. His convincing American accent never wavered. His opposite number, Sally Bowles, was played by Vicki Smith. For me this was an unconvincing portrayal, being a little too upper crust English: never quite descending to the tawdry level of the Kit Kat Club and its inhabitants - yet her final Cabaret number was very well executed. Similarly, the Kit Kat girls never quite portrayed fully the decadent levels one would expect from a society in decline.

Probably the most polished performances came from Joyce Walters as Fraulein Schneider and Harvey Lee as Herr Schultz - they worked beautifully together. Joyce had the accents and mannerisms of a middle-aged German lady and her songs, either solo or with Herr Schultz, were presented with much feeling. As for Harry's portrayal of the ever-optimistic Herr Schultz, it matched his opposite number step for step. His Meeskite number was very good. Debbie Wild was the energetic Fraulein Kost who apparently earned her daily bread by working her way through the entire German navy. David Perks provided the menace of the burgeoning evil of the fledgling Nazi party. Both the roles of Fraulein Kost and Ernst Ludwig were played very well.

The scenery, as is usual for this society, was of the highest quality with slick scene changes which kept the show moving along. The set was further enhanced by extending it onto the auditorium floor where the chorus of telephone boys and girls added to the night club atmosphere. Thoughtful musical accompaniment by Arnold J. Thornton added to the general atmosphere.

Glyn Neary

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