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2011 Fort Salem Cabaret Series
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The first space to open in July, 2007, under our renovation plan was the Cabaret at Fort Salem Theater, a little jewel box that hosts musical performances, designed by David Pedemonti to reflect the Mainstage in miniature. Lawrence Hillis in The Eagle described the atmosphere as "the meeting of old friends" with "the beauty of a romantic candle lit dinner." The room features a recessed 8' by 6' stage with state-of-the-art lighting and sound, an antique six foot Knabe Grand Piano in Brazilian rosewood, up to sixteen cabaret tables, and chairs that match the walls of burgundy and gold.
   
 
ANNOUNCING OUR SPRING, 2011 PERFORMERS
   
 
SPR 2011
   
  APRIL 9 - NATHAN LUCREZIO starring in UnHeard
 
Cambridge native Nathan Lucrezio returns to Fort Salem after several very successful cabaret and Mainstage outings. In UnHeard, Nathan takes us on a young man's journey from childhood, to high school kid, to college graduate, to life as a young adult in New York City. Facing many unanticipated obstacles head-on, as Lucrezio reflects his emotions in performance, he shares his strength to survive. Singing, playing the piano, and dancing just a bit, Nathan will impress you with a wide array of skills. The evening of mostly original songs, created for his 2010 Manhattan cabaret debut, reflect the love, fear, and anxiety that keep Nathan’s heart surging forward: the voice, at first UnHeard, will not go unnoticed.
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  APRIL 16 - BOB WARREN singing from his new CD
   
Bob Warren describes himself as “a singer/songwriter from Greenwich, New York.” He is the writer who immortalized his hometown in Greenwich, The Musical, and saluted former Greenwich resident Susan B. Anthony in the highly-acclaimed song cycle, Only the Message Mattered. He has created and produced material for, among many others, local songbird Mallory O’Donnell. As a performer himself, Bob regularly appears at Saratoga’s Caffe Lena and has just recorded his eighth CD, appropriately titled Bob Warren. Dirty Linen Magazine reviews it: “Musically right on the mark… irresistible rock, gentle introspection, variety, wit, and killer hooks." This marks Warren’s Fort Salem debut.
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  APRIL 23 - KATHY BEAVER in I'm Flying Encore Presentation
   
What’s it like to go from celebrating Patsy Cline to Mama Rose in Gypsy to serving coffee and tea on JetBlue? Fort Salem’s former artistic director and frequent leading lady, an accomplished violinist and musical director in New York City who recently added to her resume by becoming a flight attendant for JetBlue Airways, returns with an encore of the show that sold out two houses in Fall, 2009. I'm Flying proves you can do it all with music and a sense of humor in a tuneful, humorous, introspective look at life from the boards of Fort Salem to the friendly skies of JetBlue. Whether she singing a loving tribute to Patsy Cline or the showstoppers with which she touched us over the years, Kathy Beaver's return will be a triumphant one!
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  APRIL 30 - BROADWAY STAR TERI RALSTON returns to The Fort
   
We welcome the return our wonderful friend Teri Ralston, who first awed a sold-out Fort gathering in last spring’s cabaret series. Fresh to New York City from college, she landed a role in Jacques Brel is Alive and Well, going directly into the original cast of the iconic Stephen Sondheim Broadway musical, Company. When she was done touring the world in Company, Sondheim tapped her again for the original cast of A Little Night Music. She followed that with a lead in the Stephen Schwartz cult classic, The Baker’s Wife. On television, Teri has been seen in The Bold and The Beautiful, Frasier, Murder She Wrote, and Dharma and Greg. She has recently released her first solo CD, I’ve Got to Get Back to New York.
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  MAY 7 - ANITA GILLETTE: MUSICAL STAR, TV PANELIST & MOVIE MOTHER
   
Anita Gillette has appeared in countless Broadway musicals (her first, Gypsy, in 1959) and comedies, including Neil Simon’s autobiographical Chapter Two, for which she was nominated for the Tony Award. Her television appearances include Match Game and What’s My Line, Edge of Night and Search for Tomorrow, and a memorable role as Quincy’s girl-friend. Her film appearances include Moonstruck, She’s the One, Boys on the Side, and Shall We Dance. She currently has a recurring role as Liz Lemon’s mother on 30 Rock. Ms. Gillette’s Manhattan cabaret act, After All, traces her life and her career with glimpses of some of her finest musical and scene work. We saw this show last spring in its first public rehearsal and been trying to book it ever since: it's a must-see!
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  MAY 14 - JESSICA LAYTON in SOMEWHERE OUT THERE
   
WNYT news anchor Jessica Layton returns to the cabaret stage in her first solo outing, where in 2009 she starred in, and has since been touring the Capital Region with, Fort Salem Theater presents The Singing Anchors. Whether performing the national anthem at Syracuse University basketball games for tens of thousands, or at weddings for a more intimate gathering, Jessica’s passion has always been singing. Somewhere Out There: Lessons Learned While Looking for Love, the newlywed (to sportscaster Andrew Catalon) looks back at the rocky road to meeting the man of her dreams, sharing stories of heartbreak, disillusionment, and pure boredom, with humor, introspection, and the music of Madonna, Jewel, Bonnie Raitt, Carly Simon, and Celine Dion.
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Homecoming
 
Football, foliage, and Fall at the Fort: an alliterative recipe for diversion, excitement, and the best in relaxing entertainment. This year, our fifth anniversary of the Fall at the Fort series, we've invited back some of our friends who have helped make previous falls so successful. DVR the Saturday night football and come see the great entertainers who are coming home to the Fort to see you.

From Broadway and now neighboring Vergennes, Vermont, Bill Carmichael journeys south to begin the season, accompanied by pianist Scott Nicholas, singing a program of everyone's favorite standards. Internationally-acclaimed singer/comedienne Nancy Timpanaro-Hogan, who, after an incredible career in Manhattan relocated to Mechanicville, her hometown on the banks of the Hudson, will once again amaze with her voice and amuse with her irreverant quips. Rob and Rosie Spring, who have added an eighteen-month-old baby to the family since singing and dancing their ways into our entertainment hearts two autumns ago, will share some more show biz stories and celebrate the sanity they have found by settling in Saratoga Springs. And then fresh from their Mainstage hit of the summer (and subsequent Capital Region performances) of The Singing Anchors Go Hollywood, Jerry Gretzinger, Jessica Layton, and Benita Zahn will herald Christmas and Hannukah in The Singing Anchors Go Holiday.
   
  NOVEMBER 5 at 8 PM: BROADWAY'S BILL CARMICHAEL SINGING THE STANDARDS
   
Broadway's Bill Carmichael's homecoming finds him celebrating the Great American Songbook, featuring composers George Gershwin and Cole Porter, accompanied by the piano stylings of Scott Nicholas.

Bill Carmichael first dazzled our Salem audiences in 2009 with an insightful look into the life of a Broadway performer in his cabaret tour de force, Those Shining Lights Inside of Me. Last year he sang The Songs of Richard Rodgers. Carmichael cut his performing teeth on regional theater roles in Carousel, Oklahoma, Boys from Syracuse, and A Connecticut Yankee, before moving to Manhattan and landing a job in the original cast of the cabaret classic, Forbidden Broadway. It was from there, while daily spoofing the hit show, Cats, that he landed his first Broadway job. In Cats. From Cats, he continued his career treading the Broadway boards in Ragtime, Peter Pan, and Les Miserables, and the original cast of Mamma Mia. Rather than renew his contract, he, wife Susan Burk (his dance director from Ragtime), and daughter Caitlin, moved to Vergennes, Vermont, to operate Emerson House, a bed-and-breakfast, where they live and work.
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  NOVEMBER 12 at 8 PM: NANCY TIMPANARO-HOGAN ACCENTUATES THE POSITIVE
   
International Cabaret Star Nancy Timpanaro-Hogan returns to the Fort, after selling out every solo performance that she books here, and having produced and hosted our offering last Christmas, An Andy Williams Family Christmas Spectacular (Minus Andy Williams). A very special mind! And incredible talent! This fall, she'll be debuting her new act, Accentuate the Positive: Baby! Songs I Love to Sing!

The poster girl for homecoming, she fell in love and married chiropractor Wayne Hogan from her hometown, returning to Mechanicville after a meteoric rise and twenty years in Manhattan cabaret, touring and opening for Joan Rivers, appearing on tour internationally, and starring across the country in her own one-woman show about Totie Fields. Ms. Timpanaro-Hogan embodies the many aspects of the true cabaret spirit with her intense sense of the immediate and the intimate. Not one to be held to a tightly constructed script, Nancy never fails to seize the moment, commenting and cajoling as she wanders with purpose through her appreciative, sometimes unsuspecting audience.
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  NOVEMBER 19 at 8 PM: ROB AND ROSIE SPRING -- BRUSHES WITH GREATNESS
   
When we last met the singing/dancing performing team of Rob and Rosie Spring, they shared with us the story of their courtship as they toured in the Broadway National Tour of 42nd Street.They took us on a whirlwind musical journey of their courtship, life as touring young performers who relocate to a civilian life in Saratoga Springs.

In Brushes with Greatness, interspersed with some songs that they sang on the road to Saratoga, we learn about the performers who influenced them along the way. Rob grew up in Glens Falls; Rosie's more cosmopolitan summers in St. Louis saw her as part of the kiddie chorus at one of the nation's largest outdoor venues, decorating the stage for the likes of Rue McClanahan ("scary"), Captain Kangaroo ("old"), and Georgia Engel ("delightful"). Rob's successful roles in his twenties led to tales of famous people pursuing him for his autograph, including musical film icon Ann Miller. True stories, great performances, and a memorable evening.
rob and rosie
   
  NOVEMBER 26 at 5 PM and 8 PM: THE SINGING ANCHORS GO HOLIDAY
   
Benita Zahn, anchor and health reporter for NewsChannel 13, performed in the first season of our cabaret in the summer of 2007, and has graced one or both of our stages every season since. In the summer of 2009, she suggested that we book her with her Channel 13 colleague, Jessica Layton, and their Channel 6 friend, Jerry Gretzinger. Their Fort Salem Theater presents The Singing Anchors has not only filled houses in Salem, but throughout the Capital Region. Their solo shows, originally produced at the Fort, have sold out houses here and elsewhere. They headlined at Saratoga's 2011 First Night Musical Celebration, and then awed audiences once again, on our Mainstage, with an all new salute to music from Hollywood films, The Singing Anchors Go Hollywood.

Thus the play on words, going holiday. Ms. Layton is such a fan of Christmas music that we have trouble keeping her from singing Christmas songs in July. Gretzinger played Santa Claus last year in a holiday musical in Albany. And Benita loves Hanukkah, Christmas, or any occasion for a good song.
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