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Big Gay Cabaret

Adults: $25
Members: $15

Friday, June 21 | 7:30PM

Saturday, June 22 | 7:30PM

George Frey Performing Arts Center
10-10 20th Street, Fair Lawn, NJ

About the Show

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Old Library Theatre (OLT) is gooped and gagged to announce our June fundraising concert! OLT is partnering with Bergen County LGBTQ+ Alliance (BCLA) to raise money for OLT and BCLA’s Youth Services programs.

 

Join us as we celebrate LGBTQ+ Pride in Fair Lawn.

Cast

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JESSI BADEN  is happy to be part of this cabaret!

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KAITLYN BARNES is owner and director of Aurora Music Academy (AMA) in Englewood Cliffs, Kaitlyn is thrilled to be a part of OLTs Big Gay Cabaret, and to FINALLY sing a duet with the fabulous Caitlin Greene! Most recently, Kaitlyn was seen as Blanche Ingram in Jane Eyre with the Park Players. Other favorite roles include Rosalinda (Die Fledermaus) Cinderella (Into the Woods) and Elaine (Arsenic and Old Lace). Offstage, Kaitlyn maintains an active vocal studio at AMA and is always looking for opportunities for her singers! Kaitlyn has been extremely blessed to perform and work with great musicians both in the U.S and in Europe, and is hoping for more adventures soon!

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EVAN CHARPENTIER is proud to be in the Big Gay Cabaret! Evan directed last season’s Titanic for OLT, and later this year, will return to her Shakespeare roots to direct A Midsummer Night’s Dream (December 13-15th, 2024). Evan has MD’d BatBoy, Little Miss Sunshine, All Shook Up, A New Brain, and numerous Cabarets and Concerts. You may have seen her perform in Avenue Q (Lucy), The Vagina Monologues, Dogfight (Mama), The Great American Trailer Park Musical (Jeannie), Children of Eden (Mama Noah), Baby (Arlene), It Shoulda Been You (Jenny), Beauty and the Beast (Mrs. Potts), Little Shop (voice of Twoie) and Head Over Heels (Pamela). www.evanmakesmusic.com for more. Beijinhos, queerida.

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HEATHER COZINE is thrilled to back on the OLT stage with this amazing Cast & Creative team! Some past OLT favorites include: My Big Gay Italian Wedding(Angela), Side Show(Auntie), Sweet Charity(Ensemble). Thank you for all your Support!

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JAN EGGERS is Jan is thrilled to once again be gracing the OLT stage! He is excited to be working with such an amazing cast. He was last seen in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time at Bergen County Players. He has been previously seen in Titanic the musical, Vintage Hitchcock a Radio Play all at Old Library Theatre. Other credits include; Passion of Dracula as Dr Cedric Seward, Ferrovious in Androcles and the Lion, Ensemble in Cabaret and a few other productions from his days at Baruch College. He was also seen as Pawnee Bill in Annie get your Gun at the Hudson Guild Theatre. He is incredibly proud of his two children and always amazed by his loving wife. Thank you for your enduring love and support.

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ANTHONY FINKE is 22 years old and just recently graduated from Rowan University with a BA in Theatre Arts and a Minor in Dance! He was most recently seen on the OLT stage in 2019 as Bert in Mary Poppins and It Shoulda Been You in 2022! Along with the cabaret this summer, he can be seen back on the OLT stage as Prince Topher in Cinderella July 26-August 4th! “Thanks for your support and I hope you enjoy watching this amazingly talented cast!”

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PAUL FOSTER is thrilled to be part of this joyful production - his third at OLT. He is singing in support of the amazing LGBTQ+ people in his life including his niece, brothers-in-law, his highschool and college roommates, and many patients and castmates. You all have been a colorful and brave source of inspiration!

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MALCOLM GREEN could not be anymore grateful to make his debut in Old Library Theatre’s production of The Big Gay Caberet! You might have seen him in The Vanguard Theatre Company’s Broadway Buddy Performance, as Cinderella’s Prince/Wolf in Into The Woods, Melchoir in Spring Awakening with Aspire PAC, to name a few. He thanks the cast for their immense talent, dedication and love. He also thanks Maranda Felton, Clifton Jones, Makhari Felton and his loving friends for their overwhelming support. Lastly, he thanks everyone behind the scenes who have been involved in such a marvelous experience.

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CAITLIN GREENE is returning to OLT after disembarking from Titanic as Kate Mullins at OLT! After taking a small hiatus she is excited to get back on the stage! She could not do what she is doing without the love and support of Matthew and all of her furry children, Milo, Trunks, Gohan, Goten and Nail.

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KAY KOCH is so happy to be back here at OLT, having appeared last season in Radium Girls (Katherine Wiley) and the summer Mashups concert! Other recent favorite credits: Gloria: A Life (Gloria Steinem - OffBook Productions), The Toxic Avenger (Ma/Mayor Babs - Players Guild of Leonia), Ragtime (Mother - BCP). Next month Kay will be making her debut with Trilogy Repertory in Basking Ridge for their summer production, Shakespeare in Hollywood. Shout out to Jessi (the best duet partner EVER), and endless love to "my person" Packy.

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AMY KORNER is so excited to be performing in her first show with OLT! By day, Amy works as a campus recruiter for a Big 4 accounting firm and serves as a leader for the firm’s NJ Pride organization. Amy couldn’t be happier to be a part of a production that is helping a cause near and dear to her heart. Amy thanks Jeff and Dave for welcoming her to OLT (and Cynthia for sending her the audition form). Cheers to acceptance, inclusivity, and unconditional love. Happy Pride!

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AUBREY LEVINSON  AJ is thrilled to return to the OLT stage for this wonderful event! Last spring, AJ performed in OLT’s production of the Prom, and has been itching for another opportunity to perform ever since. After a brief time at law school, AJ realized that she belonged on the stage instead of the classroom, and is now working as a paralegal to support her passion for the performing arts. She’d like to thank her husband, Jacob, for being so supportive, as well as all of you in the audience for being here to enjoy our show. Happy Pride!

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KATIE LUPFER is excited to be back on the OLT stage with this wonderfully talented cast and creative team. Other theater credits include, A New Brain (Waitress/ Nancy D) at OLT, Godspell (Joanne), Leading Ladies (Audrey), The Emperor’s New Clothes (Queen Carlotta the Least), Pinocchio (The Blue Fairy), Rapunzarella White (Queen Millicent) and Sleeping Beauty (The Queen) at The Bergen County Players. Katie has also performed at the Player’s Guild of Leonia in Closer than Ever, Hair, Lovers and Other Strangers and A Christmas Carol. She has also costumed and styled wigs for many productions and received the PerryAward for Outstanding Costume Design of a play for A Shayna Maidel and Perry nominations for Ragtime, Whodunnit? and The Man Who Came to Dinner. Katie would like to thank her parents for always being supportive of her creative endeavors.

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LEOLA (Special Guest/ Master of Ceremonies for Friday) is your soon-to-be favorite Kelly Clarkson-worshipping, senior citizen, redneck lesbian and a two-time BroadwayWorld Award-Winning artist for her ongoing residency at NYC’s Green Room 42. Leola hosts Leola’s Lady Land Lounge, a big gay live chat show featuring Broadway icons and rising stars, including Sherie Rene Scott, Paige Davis, Justin Guarini, Doug Wright, Niki Haris, and Brad Oscar.
When she’s not hosting the Lady Land Lounge or managing the deli at the Piggly Wiggly in Waycross, GA, Leola is touring the country with her award-winning one-woman show, GAY
HISTORY FOR STRAIGHT PEOPLE! – a celebration of our big gay world, all of it, everything from GAY to Z. There are jokes, store-bought snacks, prizes, and one lucky audience member may even win a gently used lipstick!

To learn more about Leola visit www.leolasladyland.com for more information, including recent reviews and upcoming shows. You can stalk Leola on all social media at @leolasladyland.

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GIANNA LUCI MONGELLI (Choreographer) is a dancer and a dance teacher. Dancing since the age of 3, she has been trained in multiple genres of dance including ballet, tap, hiphop, jazz, musical theatre and ballroom. She is so grateful for this experience, thank you Dave and Jeff! She would like to thank her family and friends for always supporting her and for being the loudest in the audience! Gianna would like to dedicate her performance to two special aunts who are cheering her on from up above, Aunt Tiny and Aunt Mary.

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KATHY MONROE has done a whole bunch of theatre over the span of a lot of years… but right now none of it is as important as her dedication to allyship for the LGBTQIA+ community. If your family isn’t accepting of your identity- SHE’S YOUR MOM NOW! MAMA LOVES YOU. #freemomhugs

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JEFF PARSONS (Co-Director/Co-Producer) is grateful for the opportunity to work with this phenomenal cast and creative team, and is loud and proud! Most recently, he appeared on stage in A New Brain, Titanic and The Prom (Old Library Theatre), Bedroom Farce (PGL), Elf (CDC), Falsettos (Antrim Playhouse), and Greater Tuna (Studio Players). Jeff has spent many years producing and stage managing, for film and stage, including Deathtrap (PGL), Hand to God (Nutley Little Theatre), It Shoulda Been You (OLT), and the first middle school pilot production of Wicked Jr at Teaneck Community Charter School. Thanks to his incredibly supportive family.

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DONALD PAUSELIUS has spent a lot of time participating in community theatre, with roles too numerous to list in one short bio. Some of his standout favorite roles have been as Charlemagne in Pippin, The Big Bad Wolf in a Fairy Tale Christmas Carol, The Limping Man in Fuddy Meers, multiple roles in the musical Working, and Mr. Pippet in Suite Surrender. As for today, it’s time to sing.

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CYNTHIA RAICES While Cynthia is no stranger to the stage, having been a singer and dancer all her life, it wasn't until 2022 that she made her theater debut in OLT's production of Legally Blonde. Since then, she's played the Sugar Plum Fairy in Shrek, Shelby and Emma in The Prom, and Kate Murphey in Titanic. When Cynthia is not on the stage, she can be found in the high school hallways with a coffee in hand, trying to convince fellow staff members that she is, indeed, a teacher, not a student.

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LAURA PENNEY SHAMIR is a proud LGBTQ+ ally and honored to be in The Big Gay Cabaret! Recent productions include Titanic at OLT and The Pirates of Penzance with The Ridgewood Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company. On July 20, she’ll be joining the Titanic crew and casts from other local theater companies in Theatrical Tapestry presented by the North Jersey Theatre Alliance. Learn more: barrymorefilmcenter.com.

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CALISTA TOUSSAS is a rising senior at The College of New Jersey. This is her first show at the Old Library Theater and she is so excited for you all to see this amazing show.

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DAVE TOUSSAS (Co-Director/Co-Producer) is excited to be back at OLT and supporting Bergen County LGBTQIA+ ! He was recently seen in OLT's production of A New Brain. Dave was also in OLT's Titanic - The Musical where he portrayed Herbert Pitman/Henry Etches (2023 OLT Award Winner: Best Supporting Role in a Musical). Dave wishes to thank his friends and family for all their love and continued support!

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BETH VALENTI returns to OLT and is thrilled to be back after a long absence. She was recently seen in Tribute to Sondheim at Stageworks. Some of her memorable OLT roles were Dolly in Hello Dolly, Sheila in Chorus Line to name a few.

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MICHELLE WARD (she/her) is super proud to be performing with her kiddo for the first time, especially for this important cause that's close to their hearts! She's been on the OLT stage as Angie in The Prom (BroadwayWorld nomination), Aunt Sheila in It Shoulda Been You (OLT Award, Perry Award nomination) & Legally Blonde. Most recently, she performed at StageWorks in the Sondheim Tribute Review. Michelle has her BFA from NYU/Tisch School of the Arts (CAP 21) and has performed in NYC, regionally, and at sea! By day, she helps creative humans start & grow their businesses at http://ohhellobusiness.com. So much love to Team Awesome. Trans kids matter!

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RAMONA WARD (they/them) just finished 4th grade this week and loves drawing, anime, Hello Kitty, and playing hockey. They've performed at their school in Cinderella, and at The Performing Arts Project NJ in Legally Blonde (Callahan) and Encanto (Mirabel). Proudly non-binary and queer, Ramona is happy to be part of The Big Gay Cabaret! They're also glad to finally be *on* the OLT stage instead of in the audience watching their Mama! A "rawr" to Nana & Papa and "ping pong" to Dada.

Production Team

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CHRISTOPHER VEHMAS (Music Director) is a pianist, conductor, and vocalist. In 2012 Christopher became a member of the Artistic Children’s Chorus at the Metropolitan Opera and has appeared in six operas since then, including La Boheme in the current season. He has travelled with the NJHSA Genesis Chorale most notably to Costa Rica and South Africa, winning both a silver medal and a gold certificate in the 2018 World Choir Games. Christopher won 1st place in the Professional Music Teachers of NJ 2019 Junior piano competition. As a vocalist he won 2nd place in the NATS-NYC college classical category in 2021 and has played the role of Papageno with NJ Vocal Arts Collaborative in their production of Die Zauberflöte. He has recently performed at Carnegie Hall both as a pianist and vocalist. Christopher has guest conducted with both the New Jersey and Connecticut Choral Societies and was conductor of the NJCS CAMERATA for the 2018-2019 season. He was recently given the opportunity to conduct the Montclair State University Singers in the school's 2022-2023 season opening concert. As a music director, Christopher has led many shows, most notably Rent, Big Fish, American Idiot, and was nominated for a Perry Award for outstanding music direction for Roundtable Theater Company's production of Spring Awakening.

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