“The 1017 Club” 1930s cabaret, Johnny Crawford, swing through Crowder Hall tonight
It’s not every night that a 1930s-style cabaret comes to Tucson, much less to campus itself.
Tonight at Crowder Hall is the one-time performance of “The 1017 Club: A 1930s Revue,” a unique event that combines period-specific jazz, burlesque and magic to salute one of the most glamourous periods of the twentieth century.
“The cabaret is a part of our culture that’s really been lost and forgotten,” said “1017” director and School of Music professor Keith Pawlak.
“People aren’t familiar with it because it doesn’t really occur today, but the way the cabaret took these elements of urban culture and mixed them all together was really spectacular.”
As Pawlak explained, 1930s American cabarets reflected urban interests. On top of the big-band jazz of the era, which was always a crucial element of the productions, the cabaret also showcased popular American dance and other forms of entertainment, such as magic inherited from the vaudevillian tradition.
All of this was then presented in a series of scenes characterized by elaborate costume and set design, ensuring a breathtaking experience for all.
“We’ve done our best to make sure that the elements of our show accurately reflect the real kinds of cabarets from the 1930s,” Pawlak said.
Since coming up with the idea earlier this year, Pawlak has taken every measure to make sure the revue is accurate for the audiences. Pawlak organized something similar last year, directing a tribute to the 1920s that highlighted that decade’s dance and music in much the same way as this new show highlights the 1930s’.
“What really drew me to this project was that it was a topic that hadn’t really been explored,” he said. “Not only is it a fun time, but it informs people about this very crucial slice of 1930s culture and music.”
The musical scale of the production is phenomenal, mixing students, professionals and celebrities.
“This music is an opportunity to do something new,” Pawlak said. “So much of the jazz from this time period is so unique to the 1930s, and it’s incredibly exciting for all of us to be able to showcase such unusual and superb music.”
During the performance, the student musicians will also be accompanied by headliner Johnny Crawford, a veteran Hollywood actor and leader of his own 1930s dance band. In the show’s second half, Crawford will lead the orchestra through renditions of 1930s music pulled from the University of Arizona Jazz Archives. Magician Michael Howell and Black Cherry Burlesque dancer Bunny Boom Boom will also bring unique flavor to “The 1017 Club,” ensuring the full experience of the time period and its glamour. This is without a doubt one of the most singular events on campus, and the retro excitement of “The 1017 Club” won’t disappoint.
“The 1017 Club”, Nov. 26 at Crowder Hall,
Students: $10, General admission: $15, UA employees, seniors, military: $12.
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