The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
By John Jarobe, Bearded Ladies Cabaret
"Fueled by a Knight Arts grant, The Bearded Ladies are delivering on their promised cabaret revolution."- Mark Cofta, City Paper "[The Bearded Ladies Cabaret] are at the forefront of what is becoming a thriving cabaret scene in Philly." Lewis Whittington, Edge Philadelphia
The Bearded Ladies closed out 2012 with a bang. Marlene and the Machine: A German Expressionist Cabaret, the first in our three show season brought discovery, insight, renewed methodology and an overwhelmingly positive response from critics and audiences across Philadelphia.
"[A] cabaret that probes the boundaries between the chaos of uncontrolled emotion and the veneer of manufactured control," (Jim Rutter,Philadelphia Inquirer). We created a half-robot half-aged star version of Marlene Dietrich who challenged audiences to gain control over their emotions as part of her patented Affect Management Seminar. Attendees rose above the role of viewer as Marlene and her team of Beaut-techs prodded them with emotional music, and taught them mantras like "with my machine I am in control."
The support from our Knight Art grant invigorated our artistic process allowing for 7 dedicated weeks where our company of performers and collaborators were able to fully immerse themselves in the creative process. Research, experimentation and development were supported in a whole new way and the growth and final results of the process are truly immeasurable.
We are thrilled to be returning to the studio on our next major Knight Art funded project: Wide Awake: A Civil War Cabaret at the Kimmel Center!
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