Kim David Smith as CABARET’s Emcee

By Michelle Kazanowski

While he may not be a stranger to the stage, it is not very often that Kim David Smith, one of the stars of The Cape Playhouse’s upcoming production of Cabaret, performs in musical theatre. You may have read in this New York Times article about the thirty-three year old Australian’s cabaret shows in New York City, however this August he will have the opportunity to depict the iconic role of the Emcee in the classic musical directed by Playhouse favorite Hunter Foster.

This past week Smith answered a few questions for us to share with our Cape Playhouse audiences. Here’s what he had to say about his artistry, his fellow cast members, and Cabaret‘s relevance in regards to the current political atmosphere.

Kim David Smith Cape Playhouse
Kim David Smith
First, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your own cabaret performances?
I’m an Australian New Yorker, 33 years old, with a BA in Music Theatre, and I’ve lived in New York City for close to ten years. I am a cabaret performer specializing in music from the Weimar Republic, with a deep love for rearranging modern music in the style of 1920’s Berlin. I don’t take myself too seriously, but I take the task of interpreting text and music very seriously indeed, even when it’s a Supremes number (a la Kurt Weill), or “Someday My Prince Will Come” paired with a Friedrich Hollaender masterpiece, for example.  

 

You’ve said it’s been a long while since you’ve performed in musical theatre. What inspired you to audition for The Cape Playhouse production of Cabaret?
I have loved “Cabaret” from a very young age, and have always wanted to participate in a production. My managers know this, and when they called me about the appointment, I was all guns a-blazing! 

 

What excites you most about doing Cabaret on Cape Cod?
I’m incredibly excited to be delving into this utterly fabulous score; “Cabaret” is comprised of some of the most canny, clever and beautiful music ever written for the stage, and it’s an honor to bring it to life with Stephanie, Nick, Tally, and the rest of this delightful cast. In tandem with this excitement I’m experiencing a mild feeling of terror over how horribly relevant Cabaret is to our current political landscape; were we to substitute the word ‘Muslim’ for ‘Jew,’ we’d be consuming content straight from the fear-mongering headlines and opinion pages coming out of the Trump hive.  I think of the Emcee’s once-controvercial line at the end of “If You Could See Her:” “She wouldn’t look Jewish at all” and am reminded of politicians today tearing into social issues of race, sexuality and religion, and feel like it’s an important time to remind people what happens when minorities are used as scapegoats for political advantage.

 

If you could pick any other two other roles to do in musical theatre, what would they be and why?
I love musical theatre, and would very much like to play the Witch in “Into the Woods.” I mooned over Bernadette Peter’s performance (captured in the PBS recording) as a kid, and have always had one foot firmly planted in a world of magic and spell-casting. Having said that, I’d also really love to play Cinderella’s Prince.  Hedwig would be another dream role, in a similar vein to the Emcee. The Emcee is somehow woven into my DNA, and I am having the time of my life exploring him with Hunter, Lisa and Paul, and the rest of the truly wonderful cast of “Cabaret.”

 

Cabaret runs at The Cape Playhouse August 9 – August 20. Tickets can be purchased on our website or through calling our box office at 508-385-3911.