15th Annual Cabaret Convention—with Salutes to Porter, Wilson and Howard—Begins Oct. 18

News   15th Annual Cabaret Convention—with Salutes to Porter, Wilson and Howard—Begins Oct. 18 The 15th Annual New York Cabaret Convention, the week-long series that salutes the best of New York cabaret, begins Oct. 18. Subtitled "The Festival of American Song," this year's convention will include a starry evening featuring the works of Cole Porter.
The legendary Julie Wilson
The legendary Julie Wilson

Held at New York's famed Town Hall, the week will offer seven performances beginning with tonight's all-star gala. Those scheduled to take part in the 6 PM "Gala Opening" night performance include Barbara Carroll, Spencer Day, Christine Ebersole, Allan Harris, Maureen McGovern, Sidney Myer, Stefanie Powers (with The Page Cavanaugh Trio), Daryl Sherman, Theresa Tova, Marlene VerPlanck and Wesla Whitfield.

Family will be theme of the Oct. 19 evening, which is also set for 6 PM. Cabaret lovers can expect to see such family acts as Klea Blackhurst and Winkie Horman; Ann Hampton, Liz and Shirley Callaway; Heather, Sheila and Bruce MacRae; Andrea and Helen Marcovicci; Bill Charlap and Sandy Stewart; and KT and the entire Sullivan family.

"Favorite Songs, Favorite Voices" is the title of the Oct. 20 evening, which will include songs rendered by Christine Andreas, Judy Barnett, Michel Bell, Opie Bellas, Eva Ladas, Jennifer Kruskamp, Karen Mason, Colleen McHugh, Beckie Menzie, Tom Michael, Phillip Officer, Sarah Partridge and Ida Zecco. The concert will begin at 6 PM.

The legendary Julie Wilson will be feted Oct. 21 in a concert titled "Julie at 80." Those celebrating the famed singer-actress will include Barbara Brussell, Mary Foster Conklin, Baby Jane Dexter, Lynn DiMenna, Natalie Douglas, Sammy Goldstein, Jeff Harnar, Rebecca Kilgore, Valerie Lemon, Sue Matsuki, Sharon McNight, Jeanne MacDonald, Todd Murray, Steve Ross and Joanne Tatham. Wilson will also be part of the birthday celebration, which begins at 6 PM.

Bart Howard, who composed such songs as "The First Warm Day in May," "Let Me Love You" and "If You Leave Paris," will be remembered Oct. 22. The concert, titled "Fly Me to the Moon," will feature Howard songs interpreted by Joyce Breach, Barbara Carroll, Phillip Chaffin, Barbara Lea, Sylvia McNair, Craig Rubano, KT Sullivan, Lumiri Tubo and Ronny Whyte. The 6 PM concert will also include the presentation of the first Bart Howard Encouragement Award. Andrea Marcovicci will host the Saturday afternoon concert Oct. 23. The 2 PM performance, titled "Young at Heart," will feature tunes for audiences ages 9 to 90. Singing works from the Great American Songbook will be Bobby Belfry, Judy Butterfield, Craig Carnelia, Daisy Carnelia, Jack Donahue, Sammy Horneff, Maude Maggart, Nancy McGraw, Mark Nadler and Stacy Sullivan.

The week-long convention concludes Sunday at 3 PM with "A Cabaret for Cole," saluting the works of the late composer Cole Porter. Among those taking part in the Porter celebration include Karen Akers, Nancy Anderson, Anna Bergman, Klea Blackhurst, Kent French, Jeff Harnar, Sally Mayes, Georga Osborne, Craig Rubano, Karen Saunders, Marian Seldes, Rebecca Spencer, Uptown Express, Bobbi Wilsyn and Faith Winthrop.

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Produced by the Mabel Mercer Foundation, the first annual Cabaret Convention was mounted in 1989. Since that time similar events have been produced in Chicago, Palm Springs, Los Angeles and Philadelphia. In 2003 the Mabel Mercer Foundation presented a Convention in The Hamptons, and an expanded version of that program will be held this summer.

Those interested in making contributions to the Mabel Mercer Foundation, a non-profit organization, should contact Mabel Mercer's Executive Director, Donald F. Smith, donald.smith@mabelmercer.org.

Town Hall is located in New York City at 123 West 43rd Street. For more information about the upcoming convention, visit www.mabelmercer.org. Ticket prices for the convention are kept as low as possible with $25 seats available for all performances. Higher priced seats are available for $40 and $100. Tickets are available by calling (866) 468-7619 or by visiting www.ticketweb.com.