Cabaret gets political

Be careful what you ask for

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Feel free to sing along and hope that the song gets stuck in your head. Otherwise, you'll be late, late, late as your old habits drive you straight to the dark and empty Depot Art Center.

The song is sung to the tune of "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)" by They Might Be Giants and the words go something like, "Cabaret is at the Grand, not at the Depot. It's at the Grand, not at the Depot ..."

Continue to sing until it has been imprinted in your mind and then you can move on to other things.

Now in its 21st year, the Cabaret shows are a mud season tradition where locals get a chance to laugh at the inside jokes that have been collecting over the past year.

Proceeds from tickets sales benefit the Steamboat Springs Arts Council.

"This year, we sold out in record time and raised about $20,000," Cabaret director Scott Parker said. Cabaret producers decided to move the show to the Priest Creek Ballroom at the Steamboat Grand Resort Hotel to have room for another 75 seats at each show.

This year's production, "Cabaret Gets Political," pokes fun at local issues from Montessori to the Don Nord case and takes a stab at national issues with a mock presidential debate.

"Last year, someone said that our show wasn't political enough," Parker said. "Well, be careful what you ask for."

No local subject is sacred from ridicule, Parker said. "The only thing we won't touch is the war. There are too many people we know over there, but locally everything is fair game.

"Everyone has something to whine about and we call light to that in a funny/bitter way."

This year, there will be a skit called the "Steamboat Tango", which is a spoof on the "Cellblock Tango" from the musical Chicago.

Parker also promises a few surprise returns of favorite skits from the past, but that's all he would reveal.

The 2004 Cabaret band is an all-star group of local musicians -- Kip Strean, Andy Pratt, Willie Samuelson and Ron Wheeler.

This year's cast of actors is smaller than the past with 15 members including three first-timers -- Kip Strean, Allison Plean and Marchele McEntee.

"This year was great because it was a cast of seasoned Cabaret veterans," Parker said. "The show just ran itself.

"With this lineup, I think I can say this will be the best Cabaret you have ever seen."

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