Hannah Kiem: Kiem Time: A Jew(ish) Cabaret

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Hannah Kiem

Kiem Time: A Jew(ish) Cabaret

The Duplex, NYC, July 23, 2018

Reviewed by Chris Struck for Cabaret Scenes

Hannah Kiem

Hannah Kiem was amazing in a way that few other cabaret performers dare to be, which, in a way, is what makes cabaret shows a fun medium to explore. She tackled what it’s like to be Jewish in modern society when the latest craze is posting photos of everything not kosher on social media—like it’s the first time we’ve ever seen Swiss cheese melt. Despite that and her zeal to be a “gay icon,” she still managed to find a nice Jewish boy to marry. However, that doesn’t mean she’s changing her name, even if people mispronounce it as “Keem” when it is really “Kime.

” Happens all the time.

She started off the show with a friendly reminder on how to pronounce her last name by changing the surname in “Miss Marmelstein” (Harold Rowe) to Kiem.
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She also seemed to have every bit of the song’s history memorized, the most important bit being that it introduced a young Barbra Streisand, whose songs and roles would heavily influence Kiem’s Jewish-themed cabaret, including a Funny Girl medley. Even better, though, was her reason for including her performance of “Omar Sharif” from this year’s Tony winner for Best Musical, The Band’s Visit. She hit the melancholic nostalgia created by Katrina Lenk well from the opening lines, “Umm Kulthum and Omar Sharif came floating on the jasmine wind.

Joining Kiem were talented guests Eric Williams, Josephine Spada, and Hannah Solow. Spada and Solow were fun on “You Don’t Own Me” (John Madara/David White), while Williams joined Kiem for “Dear Sweet Sewing Machine” (Jerry Bock/Sheldon Harnick).
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Music director for the evening was Stephen Purdy, and the fantastic Henry Koperski also aided with some arrangements behind the scenes.

Chris Struck

Chris Struck's debut novel, Kennig and Gold, is due to be officially published in June 2019. He's written reviews for Cabaret Scenes since August of 2017. For more information about the writer, see StruckChris.com

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. chuckiepie

    Dear Hannah: If you are interested in bringing your wonderful show to South Florida, please contact me. It may be possible. Chuck Prentiss: cjprentiss@gmail.coom; 954-600-5701

  2. Chuck Prentiss

    Dear Hannah: I have contacted some Cabaret people down here in the Boca Raton area about bringing your Cabaret show to a local venue here. It may be possible. It could happen. If you are interested, please contact me. Chuck Prentiss 954-600-5701; cjprentiss@gmail.com

  3. chuckiepie

    This sounds like a Fantastic, Incredible Cabaret show. I am a Manhattan Transplant to Fort Lauderdale, FL. What a Hit this show would be down here. I hope that a way is found to bring this amazing show to South Florida.

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