“Willkommen, bienvenue, welcome” – every night, the Kit Kat Club’s Emcee extends this cosmopolitan greeting to its audience. Clifford Bradshaw is among the throng of guests who immerse themselves in the nightlife, in the world of cabaret and drag shows, in the multitude of life plans, the promise of an alternative lifestyle – an ecstatic exploration of freedom.
The days, however, are less glamorous: In the city’s bedsits, you have to live at close quarters with strangers, and finding the money for your weekly rent is not easy. It is a dance on the proverbial volcano – a disjointed society hiding behind the glittering façade. Economic hardship hits a collective national soul that enjoys a feeling of grievance.
Clifford meets singer Sally Bowles at the Kit Kat Club – a collision that ends up in an amour fou between practised libertinage and the yearning for a well-ordered life. Their story unfolds in the midst of a social maelstrom that carries precarious existences off into a new era that bodes social advancement for some – and certain doom for others. The glamour is over and those who can save themselves from the inevitable leave the city. And so does Clifford who sets out for the US via Paris.
Clifford Bradshaw is the alter ego of Christopher Isherwood, a British author spent the late 1920s in Berlin. The metropolis stood and still stands for a multitude of ways of living and conducting relationships. Isherwood experienced the upheavals, the shattering of life dreams at first hand. He published his novels “Mr Norris Changes Trains” and “Goodbye to Berlin” in the 1930s, creating contemporary history turned into literature and inspiring one of the most glamorous musicals, an exclamation of joie de vivre: CABARET!
Director Hubert Wild
studied singing with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau as well as violin and piano. He is well versed in classical musical theatre and in more open formats between drama, opera and performance. His co-operation with artists like Susanne Kennedy and Herbert Fritsch have contributed to his own work across genres. The Leipzig audience is familiar Hubert Wild both as a performer and a director – “Lazarus”, his directing debut, has been running at Schauspiel Leipzig for six years.