Tour, new home for ‘Cabaret’

Tuner moving to former Studio 54

The hit revival of the musical “Cabaret” is on the move. It has confirmed a switch from its current home, the Kit Kat Klub on 43rd Street., to the former Studio 54 at 254 West 54th St., and has also announced tour plans.

The Gotham site change had been expected (Daily Variety, Sept. 14). The last perf at the current base, once the Henry Miller Theater, will take place Nov. 8, and the show will reopen in its new digs Nov. 12. At the new site, “Cabaret” will be produced by original producer the Roundabout Theater Co. in association with Anita Waxman and Elizabeth Williams.

Larger capacity

The move will allow the show to increase its take each week; Studio 54’s capacity is expected to be larger than the 512 capacity of the show’s current base. Also, curtain time will be pushed back to 8 p.m. The current 7:30 curtain was to accommodate the nightclub that the site became after the show.

Roundabout artistic director Todd Haimes said in a statement, “It became apparent that it was not possible to coexist successfully and that ‘Cabaret’ needed its own home. We are fulfilling our financial obligations with the club through the end of our contract, which expires in January 1999.”

On the road

The show will also begin a national tour in February under the auspices of Pace Theatrical Group, with the first stand set for Los Angeles’ Wilshire Theater. The creative team behind the Broadway company will stage the tour, which plans stints in Boston, Chicago, Washington, Toronto, Minneapolis and San Francisco in its first year. The tour will apparently not attempt to re-create the innovative nightclub-style setting that makes the New York version unique. The Wilshire Theater is a traditional proscenium house.

The Gotham move is the latest in a series of turbulent events in the life of the show. A construction accident in Times Square forced it to shut down for a month, occasioning heavy losses and making it impossible for Tony-winning star Natasha Richard-son to continue through the scheduled end of her run. Jennifer Jason Leigh now stars in the revival.

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