Darien Arts Center Stage in collaboration with the Lipstick Project presented the first licensed all-female production of Cabaret in the Spring of this year. I was lucky enough to be asked to direct this brave and beautiful cast. 

Directed by Carin Zakes

Produced by Nova Hall

Musical Direction by Dwayne Condon

Choreography by Caitlin Roberts

Stage Manager: Kelly Kilmer

Costumer: Amy Raskopf 

Lighting Design: Jac-que Robinson

Poster: Serge Ghio

Projections: Peter Green

MC                            Juiie-Thaxter-Gourlay

Cliff                             Abigail Henderson

Sally                             Rachel Schulte

Fraulein Schneider          Bette McCreedy

Herr Shultz                    Marilyn Olsen 

Fraulein Kost                  Megan Kellogg

Ernst                             Shelley Lepetich


Kit Kat Dancers            

Megan Kellogg

Claire Kenny

Ashley Mondestin

Kelly Nayden

Sarah Sherwood

Grace Simmons

Hilary Webster

Justine Weisinger                               



Dina Fleischman

Susan Helms

Angela Jackson

Holly Jespersen

 Amy Rissolo 

Amy Wade


Director’s Note- 4/13/18

“Cabaret” has been on my directing wish-list for a while, and when approached by Lipstick Project to collaborate with Stage, it jumped right to the top. The timing seems right for a show about fear of the “other” and the fluidity of gender. 

Cabaret, set in 1931 Berlin, juxtaposes the frenzied decadence of the Berlin nightclub scene with the political decline of the Weimar Republic. Within just a few years, the rising Nazi Party would be burning books and closing down establishments like the Kit Kat Klub.


Today, we live in an era of growing understanding and celebration of diversity. It is, simultaneously, a time of renewed tribalism and intolerance.


Cabaret derives from the 1951 Broadway play by John Van Druten I am a Camera which, in turn, was adapted from Christopher Isherwoods’ The Berlin Stories. The play begins “I am a camera with its shutter open…”  Cabaret reminds us to bear witness, to speak and act against hatred. To remember that love is love is love. Fraulein Schnieder asks us all, “With the winds in the air, what would you do?” Cabaret is the story of survival, of holding fast to humanity. It is the story of every age.


Carin Zakes, Director