The memorable Cabaret comes to McKenna stage at New Paltz

NEW PALTZ – The State University of New York at New Paltz Department of Theatre Arts closes its 2011/2012 Mainstage season with Joe Masteroff’s Cabaret. Directed by Nancy Saklad, with musical direction by Brendon Sturiale and choreography by Connie Rotunda, performances take place April 19 to 29 in McKenna Theatre located on the college campus.

Enter the world of the Kit Kat Club. It is 1931 in Berlin, just as the Nazis are coming to power. When American author Cliff Bradshaw travels to Germany to find inspiration for his next novel, he is inadvertently flung into the lively night life of Cabaret – where “everything is beautiful” and “you can leave your worries behind.” It is here that he falls in love with the unpredictable cabaret starlet, Sally Bowles. As the Nazi regime encroaches upon them, their hopes, dreams and relationship are put to the test.

The play has a lively score and a host of memorable characters. It is probably best known for prior Broadway productions, one starring Alan Cumming, and a film version that starred Liza Minnelli and Joel Gray. Memorable musical numbers include “Cabaret,” “Maybe This Time,” “Two Ladies,” and “Money!”

Julee Kwak as Sally Bowles and Ian Witt as The Master of Ceremonies Photo credit: Jack Wade

Saklad, an associate professor of performance at New Paltz, has taught acting, voice and directing at several colleges and universities and at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy in N.Y. When not teaching, she directs and coaches voice, dialects and acting. Her directing credits include Much Ado About Nothing at Boston’s Publik Theatre, How I Learned to Drive, at Durham Center Stage and the Professional Division Moss Hart Award winning production of The Diary of Anne Frank at Seacoast Repertory Theatre. Saklad has been affiliated with the acclaimed Pearl Theatre in NY as a Fitzmaurice Voicework coach and consultant.

Saklad is also a recipient of the Kennedy Center-American College Theatre Festival Bronze Medallion for service to the New England Region. Most recently, she published a book called Voice and Speech Training in the New Millennium: Conversations with Master Teachers.

Sturiale is an accomplished pianist, accompanist, arranger and composer. Since moving to New York, Sturiale has performed, along with Tony Bennett, for Tony Randall’s National Actors Theatre at the Plaza Hotel, and released a CD of original piano works entitled Midnight Story. He has also been the musical director for several Broadway national touring companies including Gypsy, Footloose, and Kiss Me, Kate. Sturiale has worked as the musical director for several New York productions, and was nominated for the New York Innovative Theatre Award for Outstanding Production of a Musical for his work on Reefer Madness.

Performance of Cabaret will be held April 19, 20, 21, 26, 27, 28 at 8:00 p.m. and April 22 & 29 at 2:00 p.m. in McKenna Theatre. Tickets can be purchased online now by visiting or by calling the Box Office at 845-257-3880 beginning April 9. Prices for the performance are $20 general reserved, $18 reserved seniors, SUNY New Paltz faculty/staff, and $9 SUNY New Paltz students.

For additional information call 845-257-3880.