13 June 2010

Cabaret treats on YouTube

Cabaret in all its versions is, was and will possibly always be my favourite musical.

Alan Cumming is my favourite Emcee and he made a docco called The Real Cabaret, where he goes to Berlin to see Christopher Isherwood's flat and seek out reminders of Weimer Kabaret. He also interviews people like Liza Minelli and Ute Lempur. It's great. Here is part one and the rest is on YouTube. 

Alan was the Emcee in Sam Mendes' 1993 Donmar Warehouse production, with Jane Horrocks as Sally.  (Alan rehearsed Cabaret during the day and performed as Hamlet at night!) Sam Mendes went on to direct a little Oscar-winning film called American Beauty and took his production and Alan to Broadway, where Natasha Richardson was Sally. Both versions won stacks of awards.

We saw a big theatre version in Australia with Toby Allen and Tina Arena or Lisa McCune.

Alan's site alone will easily kill a few hours on the web, but he's also an obsessive geek,  and is one of the creators of itsasickness.com, where fellow obsessives can share their passion for anything from Dr Who to coffee or, in Alan's case, truffle oil.

But back to musicals. Now, if Dr Who turned up in the tardis (preferably looking like David Tennant), I'd ask for a soy latte and a trip to 1993 London to see the original Donmar Cabaret cast.

Turns out I don't need to wait for a frolic with a 900-year-old time lord, because there's a damn fine video of the show on YouTube. It's not as good as being there, but I can watch it in my trackies and sing along.

Here's  part one (can't embed it). The whole show is on the Tube and it's amazing.

And speaking of Emcees...look who joined Alan at the Kennedy Centre Honours Kander and Ebb.

But this has to be the the best "Wilkommen" ever.

So what about some Sallys. Of course I love Liza the most (and here she is winning her Oscar), but...

Natasha was wonderful. (SometimesMelbourne doesn't approve of illegal recordings of shows - but thanks!)

And this is a bit fuzzy and the sound drops out, but it was recorded in 1968. It's Judi Dench and a glimpse of Hal Prince's original show.

Jill Hayworth was the first Sally in 1966, so she gets the final song (and there are some stills from the first production).

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