Liberty Cabaret photos and stories!

Alright guys, so I told you that I would post on Saturday how the show went but Friday night wiped me out until about 5pm the next day (and I'm just not feeling 100% healthy right now) so I thought that I would post some pictures and stories from this weekend. All of the pictures on this post were taken by the wonderful Stephen West of West PA Magazine. Click on any of the photos to see a larger version of the image. Click Here for their website! The first photo is our cast photo... its so fun!

From left to right we have Bill Hennessey, Peg Hennessy, Bret Sloan, Janelle Chambers, Kristen Criado (back at the piano), Tammi Dahl (back at the piano), Rosie Petulla, Ted Smith, Carissa McClintock, Marc Ellis Holland, Me (Katie Kirby-Rogers) and Bryon Gable. How pretty are we? :-)

This is the same basic premise as the last shot but with us acting "candid". Cute stuff!

This is Bret Sloan singing the first verse of the opening number "Cabaret". I just adore this boy, everyone does. He has a beautiful voice.

This is a picture of the entire cast on our ending pose of "Cabaret". Unfortunately that's just pop or water in those glasses. :-) We have a lot of fun with that number. It's truly an ensemble piece.

How cute are these two? Janelle Chambers sang "I Could Have Danced All Night" and at the end Bret came in and sang with her. Notice that she's barefoot? She kicks her shoes off to "dance" and at the end Bret picks them up for her and follows her offstage! SOO cute.

More pictures of Janelle and Bret. In the number where she has the parasol, she sang "Let Me Entertain You".

This is the fabulous Marc Ellis Holland... the single most talented person I've ever met. He's a Broadway veteran and we just adore him. He sang "Very Soft Shoes".


The gorgeous Miss Ginger Watkins. She was the star of the evening... I mean, just look at those legs!! Isn't Marc just gorgeous as a woman? I mean, seriously. She sang "Ladies Who Lunch".

Ted Smith, Marc's husband and our fantastic director. He sang "From This Moment On" from Kiss Me Kate. Such a scene stealer, that one. :-)

The baby of our group, Carissa McClintock singing "Being Alive" from Company. I've known this girl for years and I just adore her.

Oh, Rosie. I've known Rosie since 1994 when I was in my first show at the Barrow. She sang "Funny Valentine". She's about the cutest thing in the world when she sings. So much joy!

This is Bill and Peg Hennessey. They have to be one of the cutest married couples I know. They both love performing so much and their rendition of "Timeless to Me" from Hairspray was so much fun!

Finally we have Bryon and me... get ready for it...

We sang "Dangerous Game" from Jekyll & Hyde. It was a great song and I'm SO proud of the work we put into it. The responses have been nothing but positive. This is just the first half of the show, however, so when Stephen posts more I will post and link the rest of them. Both nights of the show went exceedingly well. The audience had a blast and so did we. A lot of audiences don't realize that their reactions can make or break a show. If the energy from the audience is down or if they don't respond much then the cast loses steam and the show drags. Our audiences have been wonderful!

I hope you enjoyed the pictures and please subscribe to West PA Magazine if you can. It's a fabulous little magazine and it supports local area businesses.


The Liberty Cabaret Opening Night!!

So here it is... what we have been working towards for the past month... opening day of the Liberty Cabaret! We've all worked really hard on our songs and we're finally here. I am so proud to be involved with this show, it's going to be fabulous. The sales for today are (as of last night) 20 for tonight and 19 for tomorrow. That's about half full and if you put that into perspective, that would be about 250 seats in the big theatre so it's not bad at all! :-)

Isn't our theatre beautiful?

I'll post pictures and accounts tomorrow afternoon, but for now I'll just say that I'm SOO excited. It's going to be a really good time and you should all come!

OH! And tickets WILL NOT be available at the door. Reservations will end at Noon for this weekend and the same goes for next weekend.


Nunsense Auditions at CLO!!

Alright, I know I JUST posted the blog about Vanities but I have some more news for all of you... I have an audition for Nunsense at CLO in Pittsburgh!! I don't know if anything will come of this but I've got to try. My friend Ted told me that the contract for the CLO Cabaret is really good and that I should try for this one as well because it's a good opportunity. Now, on top of choosing songs, I have to learn a monologue for the audition as well. That shouldn't be a problem, more than anything I need to make sure that my songs are appropriate for this kind of audition since it's a comedy. I'm pretty set on Sally's Coat Hanger speech from You're a Good Man Charlie Brown but I'm thinking that I should maybe sing something from Annie, Get Your Gun or Oklahoma since the part I'm going for has a country solo. Then have one song that isn't country at all, just to show off my range. I had actually started to think that I had emailed too late and that I didn't have an audition and then I got the email saying that I have an audition at 8:30 on Sunday January 31st!! This is perfect because I'll have time to rest up from the shenanigans of the last night of the Liberty Cabaret and make it down to Pittsburgh in plenty of time for the audition. OH this is exciting and nerve wracking at the same time, I'm so excited!

Vanities: A New Musical

Alright, so we're finally back to theatre, after a few random posts that had nothing to do with the reason I started this blog. I got an email from Amazon this morning. You know, the kind that they send you because they think they have something you might want based on things you've ordered before. Well this time I think they've got me. They sent me a link to a new show that is being released on CD for the first time since its Broadway Debut last year. This new show is Vanities: A New Musical. When I saw it I immediately thought I was seeing things because I've done a play called Vanities and I thought it wasn't possible that someone had made a musical based off of it... but I was wrong. That's Broadway for you. As much as I love it, there is so much recycling that is done with old shows that you're hard-pressed to find something truly original that doesn't feel familiar. For example, Wicked is just another take on The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Rent is La Boheme redux, West Side Story is Romeo and Juliet modernized... you know what I'm talking about. This is not to say that I don't love each of these shows, because I do, I'm just yearning for another Urinetown sometime soon... like nothing you've ever seen before.

Anyway, the point of this post is that, although I do get annoyed with the recycling that gets done these days, I am very excited to hear this recording because this play was so much fun to do. I was 17 when I played Mary and oddly enough, although the women playing Joanne and Kathy were in their thirties I played the most adult role in the show and I had a blast! Mary is an interesting character to play. She's the most disenchanted with the group from the beginning, the most sexually promiscuous and eventually ends up being the curator of an erotic art gallery. She's also bisexual. I don't think I fully understood all of the content of the show at that point in my life, but I'm really glad that I did the show. I remember the director, Rosie Petulla, calling my mom to ask her permission for me to be in the show (there weren't auditions for this show) because there was some cursing for my character. The other girls in the show were Sheila Lackey Plymire and Amy Dittman and it was really fun.

This is from the first act, when the girls are in high school... obviously. They are cheerleaders at a Texas high school. The characters are (from what I can tell) Mary (Left), Kathy (Center) and Joanne (Right).

This picture takes place ten years later when the girls are in college and still friends.

From what I can tell from this picture it's from the third act, and another decade has passed. The girls end up reconnecting, but it's not without tears. It's a fantastic show and I'm really hoping to be able to play Mary someday in the musical version. Because that would be SO fun to play her again... and be able to sing while doing it. :-)

And yes, for any of you Disney Channel fans, that redhead is Anneliese Van Der Pol from That's So Raven. It's nice to see her making it on Broadway, she has a beautiful voice.


I think I need to change the premise of this blog... :-)

So I wanted to tell you guys something you may not know about me... I'm a total geek. Theatre, media, art, music, animation, comics... you name something geeky and I have an unhealthy obsession with it. One of the geekiest things I've gotten into is video games. When I was probably 15 (maybe younger, I'm not sure) I was introduced to the world of Warcraft (Not WOW, just the regular kind that you can actually beat and move on with your life) and Diablo. I spent WAY too much time on these games as a kid, and I loved playing the Rogue on Diablo. I wanted to look like her so much that I even did an art project with my face on her body.

This is her... I loved this character so much, she was the only one that could do some real damage to other characters without touching them. The Sorcerer could do magic but he was totally weak in comparison. And he's a man, so that makes him automatically inferior. Sorry... I digress.

Another reason I loved this game was for all of the supporting characters in Tristram, the town in which the game starts. It's all very Celtic and beautiful. I know that there were other games with better graphics but I LOVED this game. The premise, as stated on Blizzard's website (the company that develops Diablo and Warcraft and the like) is:
"An unknown force of evil has swept across the land, plunging it into civil war and terrorizing the populace. A mad king, his missing son, and a mysterious archbishop are all pieces to the puzzle that faces you. You have journeyed to the source of the evil. The town of Tristram, now inhabited by only a handful of survivors. The cathedral there is built over the ruins of an ancient monastery, and now eerie lights and sounds are heard echoing through its abandoned halls."

It never failed... when I walked into a new place with new demons to defeat my heart would race like I was really there... I always got so nervous when I knew that I would be going up against a bunch of demons.

There was a drunk named Farnham that I absolutely loved to talk to, he was always really funny. To give you a few examples...

In response to asking about the poisoned water supply
"(scoffs) You drink water?"

In response to asking about the "Butcher"
"Big! Big cleaver killing all my friends. Couldn't stop him, had to run away, couldn't save them. Trapped in a room with so many bodies...so many friends...noooooooooo!"

Which accounts for his drinking problem I suppose...

In response to asking about Ogden the Innkeeper's missing sign)
"You know what I think? Somebody took that sign, and they gonna want lots of money for it. If I was Ogden... and I'm not, but if I was... I'd just buy a new sign with some pretty drawing on it. Maybe a nice mug of ale or a piece of cheese..."

In response to asking about the Heaven Stone
"I used to have a nice ring; it was a really expensive one, with blue and green and red and silver. Don't remember what happened to it, though. I really miss that ring..."

In response to asking about the Book of the Blind
"Look here... (chuckles) That's pretty funny, huh? Get it? Blind - look here? (laughs)"

In response to asking about the Black Mushroom
"Ogden mixes a mean Black Mushroom, but I get sick if I drink that. Listen, listen... Here's the secret - MODERATION IS THE KEY!"

In response to asking about the Anvil of Fury
"Griswold can't sell his anvil. What will he do then? And I'd be angry too if someone took my anvil!"

In response to asking about the Warlord of Blood
"Always you gotta talk about blood? What about flowers, and sunshine, and that pretty girl that brings the drinks. Listen here, friend - you're obsessive, you know that?"

In response to asking about Lachdanan
"Lachdanan is dead. Everybody knows that, and you can't fool me into thinking any other way. You can't talk to the dead. I know!"

In response to asking about the Chamber of Bone
"Okay, so listen. There's this Chamber of Wood, see. And his wife, you know - her - tells the tree... cause you gotta wait. Then I says, that might work against him, but if you think I'm gonna pay for this... You... uh... yeah."

In response to asking about the Archbishop Lazarus
"They stab, then bite, then they're all around you. Liar! Liar! They're all dead! Dead! Do you hear me? They just keep falling and falling... their blood spilling out all over the floor... All his fault...(groans)"

Now obviously some of these quotes are funnier than others but I find them all entertaining. And he's staggering drunk, so he slurs his words and everything.

The reason for writing this blog post was to express how pumped I am that they're releasing Diablo III soon! Oh it looks GORGEOUS!! Check it out:

Alright... I'm done boring you with my geekiness now. :-) Thanks for reading!

Fallen Princesses

So I wanted to write about something I found on a fellow theatre geek's blog. It's a link to a website called "Fallen Princesses". It's a really interesting take on classic fairytale princesses who have been thrust into the modern world. You can go to the site by clicking Here

Here is one of the pictures from the series... it shows what Princess Jasmine would be dealing with if she were alive in present day Iraq. It's something I've never thought about before because, even with the current war in Iraq, I never really considered that Aladdin would be set in the area where the war is going on.

Photo by Dina Goldstein.


Glee, the Golden Globes, Jose Garces and Conan.

So I know that this blog is supposed to be specifically about Theatre but I wanted to rant a little bit on my thoughts about certain events happening in the world of Entertainment.

First off... GLEE WON A GOLDEN GLOBE FOR BEST TELEVISION SERIES - COMEDY OR MUSICAL!!! It beat out some of NBC's longest running and best received shows that have won Emmys and Golden Globes. I'm talking about The Office and 30 Rock. It also beat out Entourage! YAAAAAY Glee! If Glee hadn't been a contender I would have loved if any of these shows had won, but I'm so excited that Glee won it!

Another exciting thing that happened last night is that Jose Garces won his first battle as an Iron Chef!!!

I watched The Next Iron Chef religiously and from the very beginning I loved this man and I knew he would win. It's also great that he's from PA! He's such a sweet natured, teddy bear of a guy... it makes me happy that he didn't have to lie and cheat his way to the top and that he's such a solid person. I can't wait to see him beat out all of the competition this season. It makes me SO happy.

Okay, on to my actual reason for blogging.

I want to express my support for Conan O' Brien. I have loved watching his show for years and it was a big day when he got the Tonight Show after Jay left. I think I can speak for all Conan fans when I say this promotion was LONG overdue. So when, after only seven months of his show they're trying to take it away from him (since they're not really trying to take away the title... just the time slot, essentially they're making it the "Tomorrow Show") I was livid. I do enjoy Craig Ferguson, but for the most part the only late night show I watch is Conan. I mean, really... why did Jay renege on his deal? He was supposed to have retired, giving Conan the spot that he agreed on five years ago with NBC. Ugh... I hate the television industry.

So how excited was I when I opened up the paper today and saw that Conan's ratings have surpassed Jay's? I know that Jay has a strong following with the older sect but the target demographic (18-49) is obviously supporting Conan. More than likely it had to do with the publicity that he is garnering due to the battle with Jay. It leaves one to wonder if this entire thing is just a publicity stunt to make the late night shows more popular... but maybe I'm just being cynical. I want to see Conan prevail, but if that means leaving NBC and going to Fox, then I hope that's the decision that he makes.

I leave you with my favorite quote so far in the battle between Jay and Conan.

"Hosting 'The Tonight Show' has been the fulfillment of a life-long dream for me. And I just want to say to the kids out their watching, you can do anything you want in life. Unless Jay Leno wants to do it, too."

And a picture of how life was before all of this happened... it's hard to see Jay doing this to Conan...


Auditions for CLO

Alright, so I've been waiting a few days to write about this because I wanted to spread out my posts, but I wanted to let everyone know about my audition for CLO in Pittsburgh! My audition is at 6:30 on February 13th at the Benedum. I'm freaking out a good bit because it's my first audition outside the Community Theatre world and I'll be going up against people with agents and who have way more experience than I do. My audition pieces are "I Could Have Danced All Night" from My Fair Lady and "Maybe This Time" from Cabaret. Since I'm singing "Maybe This Time" in the Cabaret I thought it would be a good piece because I'll have had a lot of practice by that point and I need to be extremely prepared if I have ANY shot at getting into even one of these shows. Well, that's all for right now. I'll be keeping you all updated as it gets closer and then I'll post how it went.


Liberty Cabaret Update!

So yesterday went exceedingly well. After some initial akwardness with our original movements for Dangerous Game, Bryon and I started working on actual blocking instead of what we had been doing and it seemed to just fall into place from there. When we showed it to our directors, they all agreed that the blocking was super intense and that it was perfect for the feeling of the song. Tammi tweaked it a little bit, simplifying our movements so that they didn't distract from our voices and once we implemented her notes it was great. They all seem to have the same frame of mind with this song: it's sexy. Bryon and I are finally getting really excited about this song.

Another fun thing that happened last night is that, because I don't have anything besides the finale in Act 2, they're having me sing At Last by Etta James in the second act. I'm so excited because I love that song and I've always wanted to perform it but I've never had the opportunity to do so. So it looks like I'll be posting three videos on here once I have them. :-) I'll keep updating on this as it goes along... a week from tonight we open!


Liberty Cabaret

Currently I'm involved in a show at the Barrow called the Liberty Cabaret. It's a Dinner Theatre in the Little Theatre and it's fantastic, if I do say so myself. :-) The cast is comprised of ten performers; Janelle Chambers, Bryon Gable, Bill and Peg Hennessy, Marc Ellis Holland, Carissa McClintock, Bret Sloan, Rosie Petulla and Ted Smith and myself. It's being directed by Ted Smith with Musical Direction by Tammi Dahl and accompaniment by Kristen Criado. It's going to be a great night of food and singing, because what more could you possibly want out of an evening? I know that music and food are two of my favorite things. :-) It's $30 per ticket which I know sounds like a lot off hand but when you consider that you'd probably spend at least $15 for dinner at any given restaurant and then $15 for a ticket it evens itself out quite nicely.

So rehearsals are going very well, I have a duet with Bryon and a solo piece as well. We're singing "Dangerous Game" from Jekyll and Hyde and then I'm singing "Maybe This Time" from Cabaret so it should be a really cool time. We're working on the song tonight before rehearsal, just getting the staging down so that we can start performing it instead of singing it with out hands in our pockets.

Opening night is a week from tomorrow! It's scary but it's going to be a lot of fun as well. I have to get a dress for the show, I need a cocktail dress and since I've never shopped for one it should be a lot of fun! I'll post pictures once I have a dress.

Well I guess that's all for this post. More on the Cabaret to come!

My first post... ooh... :-)

Hey everyone!

So here's the premise of my little blog. It's my first one so I'm going to try and be a dilligent as possible in updating it frequently, however I was terrible when it came to writing in my diary as a kid so who knows? Alright, the premise of this blog is to chronicle my life in the theatre. I'll post auditions, progress reports, pictures and other random things as I see fit, :-) However, being as my life doesn't ONLY revolve around theatre (although it nearly does) and I don't have a personal blog, you might get little bits on the side of things that are happening in my daily life. So... here's a little about me.

My name is Katie Kirby-Rogers, although I'm in the process of getting a divorce so soon the Rogers will be dropped. I'm 24 years old and I've been performing my whole life. As my mom will tell you I've been singing forever... she even has tapes of me singing The Battle Hymn of the Republic when I was two years old. She loves it because "Glory, Glory, Hallelujah" came out "Gory, Gory, how are you... ya!". Oh the stuff moms save of their kids, lol.

My first musical was Angels Aware at Fox St. Church of God when I was five years old. I played an angel. When I was in fourth grade I auditioned for "Oliver!" at the Barrow Civic Theatre and the rest, as they say, is history. Since 1991 I've been involved in nearly 50 plays and musicals, not to mention singing in various choirs, talent shows, recitals and weddings over the years. Theatre is in my blood at this point and I wouldn't trade it for the world because nothing makes me as happy as being onstage.

So, there you have it, that's me in a nutshell. I'll be posting things as they happen in picture, video and text formats so I can keep everyone updated on my life, especially after I move away.