The Austin Chronicle

Austin Cabaret Theatre

Home on the hill

By Robert Faires, November 18, 2005, Arts

Scottish Rite Theatre. Mary Moody Northen Theatre. The Driskill Hotel. Chez Zee. For its first four seasons, catching an Austin Cabaret Theatre show – and they were definitely worth catching – meant double-checking the venue. The fledgling company's presentations of outstanding musical performers from across the country tended to wander from show to show. But that's changing with season No. 5: ACT has found a home, one where it can not only offer cabaret in a consistent location but do so with an intimacy, immediacy, and elegance befitting this most stylish of entertainments: the swanky Mansion at Judges' Hill. The boutique hotel in the West Campus area has created a new space above its two-story parking garage, and part of it includes a classy club room with a stage that can seat about 150 patrons.

To break in its new home, Artistic Director Stuart Moulton has booked yet another great song-and-dance man of the musical theatre: Lee Roy Reams. The Tony nominee for his work in 42nd Street has a sterling list of Broadway credits: Cornelius in the 1978 revival of Hello, Dolly! with Carol Channing and director of the 1995 revival; Albin in La Cage aux Folles (taking over from original star George Hearn); Lumiere the candlestick in Disney's Beauty and the Beast; and director and star of An Evening With Jerry Herman, not to mention the flamboyant Roger DeBris in the first and second national tours of The Producers. He's a class act and just the guy to give ACT – and its fans – a housewarming to remember.

Lee Roy Reams will perform Thursday and Friday, Nov. 17 and 18, 8:30pm, at the Mansion at Judges' Hill, 1900 Rio Grande. For more information, call 453-2287 or visit

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