With music and lyrics by John Kander and Fred Ebb, and book by Joe Masteroff, CABARET tells the story of an English woman's romance with an American writer set against the background of a crumbling Germany at the start of The Third Reich. CABARET features some of the best-known songs in musical theatre, including "Willkommen," "Tomorrow Belongs to Me," "Money" and "Cabaret."
British director Sam Mendes first staged CABARET at the Donmar Warehouse in London to critical acclaim, and sold-out houses, in 1993. For the New York production, Mr. Mendes chose the former Henry Miller Theatre, which was operating as a nightclub, to create the non-traditional performance space that is the infamous Kit Kat Klub. The treatre was re-configured with a combination of cabaret-type seating as well as traditional theatre seating. The production eventually transferred to the notorious Studio 54, with a multi-million dollar custom redesigned theatre space.
In addition to winning eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical, the original production of CABARET also received the New York Drama Critics' Award, the Outer Critics"Circle Award, the Variety Poll of New York Critics, and London's Evening Standard Award and Plays and Players Award.
CABARET is based on the true-life observations of Christopher Isherwood who wrote "The Berlin Stories" about his experiences in Berlin between 1929 and 1932.
Playwright Joe Masteroff had the idea of developing the story into a musical and brought it to the attention of Harold Price, who contacted the songwriters, John Kander and Fred Ebb.