Cabaret Hotline Online is an independent website with more than 7,400 pages of news, information and stories on cabaret, owned and maintained by Stu Hamstra. CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE is not affiliated with any club or organization. It is totally supported through advertising and membership donations. This blog is an extension of the website and newsletter.


"His eye is on the sparrow...."

Thursday, August 26, 2010



Yesterday we sent out a special e-mail to all subscribers regarding our upcoming relocation, and as promised, I'm not going to repeat the information from that letter except for the following notes.
First off I was completely overwhelmed by the outpouring of concern by the many subscribers and 2009-2010 members who answered my plea and joined as 2010-2011 members. We needed to raise approximately $2000 to make this unanticipated move to a new apartment, and nearly $1000 was raised between noon, when the letter went out, and midnight last night.

Most thrilling was receiving memberships from brand new, first time members from as far away as Australia, Florida and Los Angeles, and the return to membership status of several folks who had let their membership lapse more than a few years ago. Finally, two memberships arrived - almost at the same time - from folks who could not afford to join last year, and were given free memberships made possible by extra donations others sent in with their renewals. Such a great feeling! We've already given free memberships this year to 35 folks - members of last year's CABARET FOR SENIORS program (which we discontinued last December).

I was in Queens yesterday to check out a room at an apartment of a friend of my pal Daniel. It isn't ideal in that it is several blocks from the bus to the subway to Manhattan, but I have had that situation before when I lived in Elmhurst. Daniel is concerned about the winter, with ice on the sidewalks, etc., but at least this spot is available right now and with someone we know. We discussed a second alternative last night at dinner in a Columbian restaurant we both enjoy in Jackson Heights, and he is checking that out today. I feel a lot better today (yesterday I was really depressed and confused with the impending move and no place to move to and no funds to move with). Thanks also to the folks who offered to help with furniture - once we finalize the move I certainly will be contacting you.

If you haven't joined yet for 2010-2011, your membership donation today will truly help CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE survive and continue.

In last week Saturday's MEMBERS ONLY issue we listed our reasons "WHY NO ONE PAYS ATTENTION TO CABARET REVIEWS AND YOU SHOULDN'T EITHER!" This was the third part of our soon to be revised CABARET TIPS & FAQs section of the website - we'll be posting the series on the web when it is complete. You can read the current "everything you wanted to know about cabaret but didn't know who to ask" section at
We're combining the first three in the series already published, plus the one we're sending out this Saturday, into a special TIPS issue to be sent to all new members for 2010-2011 who didn't receive the earlier MEMBERS ONLY issues. These special MEMBERS ONLY issues will continue to be sent through September to members for 2009-2010 who do not renew.

This Saturday's topic (I have to work on a catchy title) will be about press releases. Did you know that there are actually three kinds of releases? And you can get the best results if you make use of at least two of the types.

And then, if we have a MEMBERS ONLY issue on the weekend of September 4th (hopefully I'll have a place to live and a live DVD connection by then), the topic we'll write about is tentatively titled: "How Do You Tell The Cowboys From The Indians?" It's getting really hard to tell exactly who does what in cabaret these days (at least here in NYC). You used to be able to tell which folks were critics writing about shows and which were directors/performers/presenters creating the shows. Now its all muddled. Members will get the full dish, plus a special Cabaret GPS Location Chart to lead them through the maze - its so confusing, I probably won't get it totally straightened out myself.

I was away to Grand Rapids over the weekend, but I am really thrilled that the special CALLING ALL ANGELS BENEFIT 2 at the METROPOLITAN ROOM packed them in on Friday night. And I feel really bad I wasn't there because Greg Kennell was able to make it to the show! Greg's special needs continue, and so the benefits on his behalf continue - there's a special benefit show, featuring Sue Matsuki, Marcus Simeone and Tracy Stark in Saturday, September 11th at 7:00 pm at THE METROPOLITAN ROOM (34 West 22nd Street, NYC - 212-206-0440 - ) - details in the CABARET EVENT LISTINGS on the website under September 11.

I wish I could report on Cabaret in Grand Rapids, but I searched the newspaper listings and came up empty for last weekend. However, with several colleges in the city and nearby, there is plenty of interest in the arts and a new city-wide program called ARTFEST, held last year, drew large numbers of attendees and will be repeated this year. But it was August. I have one follower on Twitter who is a Grand Rapids performer, but he hasn't Tweeted lately.

Please remember - CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE is sent WorldWide and isn't just about NYC. But we need press releases to fill our issues with world-wide coverage. If you're a NYC performer doing a show out of town, send me a press release - we have subscribers in every state except North Dakota (we had one there who worked in one of those missile silos, but he got transferred), plus England, France, South Africa, Australia, Guam and the Philippines. Oh yes, there are a few scattered throughout South America. And we could get more subscribers in those places if we could write more about cabaret events in those places.

Need help writing a press release? Here's what we are looking for - CLICK HERE:

All members will get our special report on PRESS RELEASES (And Then There Were Three) in Saturday's MEMBERS ONLY issue.

There will be only one issue of the CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE newsletter the week of September 5th due to the Labor Day (USA) Holiday - the regular Monday issue for LABOR DAY, September 6th, will be combined with the WEEKEND issue and will be published on Thursday, September 9th.

At the end of August we will be removing the CD SALE pages of all non-renewed 2009-2010 members, as well as the CABARET BLOG and CABARET YOUTUBEpages, while adding new pages for all new members (SILVER level and above) requesting same.

On September 30th, non-renewing members will no longer be listed (with website, MySpace, Facebook and Twitter links) on the MEMBERSHIP pages and will also no longer receive the special Saturday MEMBERS ONLY newsletters.

Please don't delay - join or renew today. Now - more than ever - cabaret (and CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE) needs your support.

I don't know what's in store for the next few days as I change location after 3 1/2 years in the East Village. Wandering through the area last night after a visit to my likely new home in Queens, I must say I will truly miss this area. But with a new neighborhood comes all sorts of new attitudes and outlooks. I've always been open to change, to new ideas, to new concepts. Even at age 71 I know in my heart that I'm not too old to learn!

Spending a weekend with my 3 sisters - we had a combined age of nearly 300 years! - I realized again that my entire family is made up of "pioneers", perhaps reflective of both sets of my grandparents who left Holland at the turn of the century (the one that started with a 19) to come to a land of which they knew next to nothing except it was where opportunity and freedom could be found. I guess its in my genes to seize the new!

I hope you'll excuse any disruptions in publication schedules between now and when we get settled after September 1st. There's a lot of work to be done (work I never planned on having to do again, but I did save the packing boxes!) And thank you all for your support and encouragement. Each time a membership donation comes in I feel your love and appreciation!

Progress reports daily (perhaps hourly) on Twitter - Facebook - the Blog - and in Monday's issue. (The MEMBERS ONLY ISSUE goes out on SATURDAY).

See a show or two this week! Visit our websites! Run a banner or sidebar ad! Join CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE for 2010-2011.

Look for more news on the website ( ), on the blog ( ) and updates, picks & reminders on TWITTER ( ) and FACEBOOK ( ). Every day, in every way, we're promoting cabaret!

And that's just about the way it was.

Thanks for your support of CABARET HOTLINE ONLINE!

Hugs & Stuff,