‘Cabaret’ brings edge to campus

Fresno State University Theatre will present “Cabaret,” a 12-time Tony Award winning musical, beginning Dec. 5 and running until Dec. 14.

Cabaret is an edgy play where its characters hide behind violence, drugs and sexuality to help escape the dangerous times of life in Germany before WWII.

Main characters Sally Bowles, played by theatre arts major Aubrianne Scott, and Emcee, played by theatre arts alumnus Matthew Schlitz, take the stage nightly at the Weimar Berlin club Kit Kat Klub, using their provocative performances as a way of helping the crowd leave their troubles behind.

Director J. Daniel Herring, a Fresno State professor in theatre arts, said the play portrays how people cope during dark times and deal with the reality and awfulness that is going on in that time in history.

“You can try to hide from it, but eventually you’ll have to deal with it,” he said.

As the Nazis begin to rise to power in Germany in the 1930s and tensions grow, American writer Clifford Bradshaw visits the risky Kit Kat Club. He meets the English singer Bowles, and falls in love.

Herring said the characters are trying to find the balance between “failure and success, light and darkness, and reality and fantasy.”

“These people are living their lives on the edge of a razor blade,” Herring said.

This is the type of tension built up in “Cabaret,” Herring said, with people having to face challenging experiences both personally and as a wider community.

This is a well-anticipated play andis expected to sell out, said Jason Burnias, who works in ticket sales.

“I recommend it to all musical lovers,” Burnias said.

Tickets cost $12 for students, $18 for alumni, staff and seniors, and $20 for general admission. Group rates are also available.

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