The Cabaret Showcases

Capers 2002 - 2007. Chapel off Chapel 2014 - 2016!

Initially designed just to showcase some of Melissa’s students, the showcases, held at Capers Cabaret, proved so popular that soon they were being held every month.

“I think student concerts are fine, but a student only gets the chance to do one song, so doesn’t get a chance to truly start to relax onstage as they are on and off in 3-4 minutes!” Melissa Langton

Many performers have now gone on to perform professionally in either cabaret or musical theatre, or both! Over the 8 year period, over 150 performers used this fabulous opportunity, to keep up their performance skills and showcase their talent.

The Cabaret Showcases were restarted early in 2014 and are being held in The Loft at Chapel off Chapel. Proving to be very popular, the showcases are run every 3 - 4 months. To audition click here.
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Alex Rathgeber

“Fresh out of WAAPA, the Capers Cabaret Showcase gave me my first real taste of performing solo on stage in Melbourne. I subsequently felt very encouraged and motivated to continue the ball rolling, and I used the Showcase as a springboard to then create a full solo show which I performed later the same year. I remember vividly the process of putting it together, exploring new material and being encouraged to be bold and daring with my choices. I think it gave me a real appreciation for the art of cabaret and brought me into an exciting area of creative inspiration I hadn't had the guts to venture into. It gave me a lot ofconfidence. It was a thrilling kind of experience, and I had an excellent time doing it.”

Alex most recently starred in Drowsy Chaperone, An Officer and A Gentleman, Ghost and Anything Goes.
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Jaclyn DeVincentis

“I first collaborated with Melissa and Mark as part of The Cabaret Showcases in 2014. Their unwavering support and guidance prompted me to extend my showcase piece into a full length show which I debuted at Chapel Off Chapel in 2015. There is absolutely no chance that an opportunity such as that would be given to an emerging artist without the help, generosity and expertise that Melissa and Mark provide.

Since then I  have performed in
John and Jen (Pursued by Bear, 2015) and the Victorian premiere of Dogfight (Doorstep Arts, 2016) and hope to premiere a new self devised piece in the coming 12 months (Again with the help of Melissa & Mark…they just don't know it yet!)

I cannot recommend The Cabaret Showcases enough and wholeheartedly attribute it to being the catalyst that got me to where I am as a performer today.”
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Em Burke

“The Cabaret Showcases were a fantastic platform to perform and try out ideas in an encouraging and supportive environment. They are great fun and an amazing opportunity to make a start in a really exciting and professional set up. Melissa is an amazing mentor and I am a much more confident performer for my experience with the showcases”.

Emily Burke was the Runner Up on ABC’s Operatunity Oz
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Andrew Broadbent

“The Cabaret Showcase is a fantastic way to dip your foot into the pool of cabaret and solo performance. Internationally renowned artists providing mentoring and performance experience in a supportive and low-pressure environment is a brilliant way to start your career or try out new material and ideas. Being able to focus my ideas into a shorter set - under the guidance of experienced and generous performers - without the associated worries of production and venue issues, I had a very positive first-time experience in the cabaret world and learned a lot about structuring a show, connecting to an intimate audience and the performance styles open to me. Thankyou Cabaret Showcase! “

Andrew Broadbent most recently performed in The Addams Family & Pirates of Penzance.
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Danielle O’Malley

"Hey there! My name is Danielle O'Malley and I recently took part in one of Melissa Langton and Mark Jones's Cabaret Showcases. As a professional performer who has previously focused on musical theatre, the concept of writing and performing a cabaret was daunting, but is an extremely valuable skill to have in such an unreliable and inconsistent industry. Melissa and Mark guided us through all the steps of creating a cabaret, from work-shopping ideas and concepts, to song transpositions and arrangements, linking stories with music, lighting, sound, costumes and self-promotion. Their manner is nurturing and encouraging, and they were extremely generous with their time and knowledge.

I know have the skills and support to create my own work and am so proud of what they helped me achieve. With the Australian government cutting so much funding for the arts, we need inspiring and dedicated tutors such as Melissa and Mark more than ever before". 

Danielle recently performed in Opera Australia’s South Pacific and is currently workshopping her brand new show, Cilla Black - You’re My World in preparation for an Australian tour.
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Marcelle Knapp

“Creating a show from the ground up can be overwhelming when you're starting out. I gained so much from working with Melissa Langton on a Cabaret Showcase as a young artist. I came to her with an idea for a show and she helped me with its structure, musical shape and blocking. Melissa is one of the most inspiring, creative and nurturing artists and mentors I know and working with her has had a big effect on me.’

Marcelle Knapp is currently a popular Melbourne vocal coach.
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Margaret Tanjutco
“I am a performer/writer/media maker currently studying Bachelor of Media and Communications at RMIT as well as holding a Diploma of Musical Theatre. It was almost a year ago that I participated in the Cabaret Showcases and I can still feel the powerful reverberations of lessons learned to this day - to this minute even, as I am in the process of developing a few short and long term creative projects of my own. 

Mark and Melissa were so generous with their valuable support and guidance, creating an environment equal parts safe, challenging, and encouraging. They have provided solid foundations that allow me to bravely and better navigate the independent creative industry. They have also been so helpful with guiding my creative voice into workable end products. So much of what I can dare to do is owed to Mark and Melissa's Cabaret program - a program with lessons so relevant and adaptable for many forms of storytelling and showcasing diverse experiences.”
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Stephen Valeri

“Mark Jones and Melissa Langton's 'Cabaret Showcases' are a wonderful initiative for up and coming and established performers alike. Mark and Melissa's 'no fuss' approach to the process of putting on a show is refreshing and exciting to be around. These professionals are honest and extremely generous with their time and expertise.

The Showcaes gave me an invaluable opportunity to test new material before it hit the main stage. Within the safe environment Mark and Melissa created, I was able to take the creative risks necessary to shift my work to the next level, all whilst allowing me the opportunity to perform to an audience and in a venue I may not have had the chance to so early in my career. 

Their work enriches the opportunities and experience of the performers they mentor, the audiences that support them as well as the greater cabaret and arts scene of our city. I'd have no hesitation in signing up again or recommending colleagues to this program.”
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Megan Tiedemann

“I participated in The Cabaret Showcases in 2014 and it was the best performance experience I had had to date.
Working with Melissa and Mark was such a positive and rewarding experience.  Throughout the process I felt supported and encouraged the whole way. They both have a knack of guiding you to make the work the best it can be without shutting down you or your ideas. This experience saw me start to really grow in confidence not only in myself as a person but as a performer, it also helped me to find my voice and realise that I have a lot to say! Since it was such a rewarding experience I developed my showcase into an hour long one woman cabaret which I wrote, marketed, directed and performed myself in 2015. This is something I would not have had the confidence to do with out having the prior experience of Melissa and Mark’s showcase.

I teach singing privately and for Stage School Australia and am re-developing my show again to hopefully put on stage later this year. I can honestly say cabaret isn’t a path I ever thought I would do or could do but The Cabaret Showcase opened up a whole new journey for me and it’s something I can see myself doing forever.”
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Katie Lewis

“Doing the Cabaret showcases was one of the highlights of my career. It taught me that no matter how experienced you are or how well you can sing, everyone has something unique to offer and being your own true self is what matters. Mark and Melissa were encouraging and gave you constructive feedback and they know how to bring out the best in people. It is amazing that these two professionals are so willing to give of their time and expertise to foster the talents of the stars of tomorrow and to show that Cabaret will always remain alive and well.

Katie Visser is the lead singer of the rock band "Rogue Element" and is a singer/songwriter/actor/writer and director. She is currently teaching Drama and English to secondary students and performed her Cabaret snippet "Katie goes to the 80s" in February 2016 and is planning on taking it further by developing it into a full length show. Katie is also working on recording some original material and is hoping to release her EP either in 2017 or 2018.”
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Francesca Waters

“I did my first Cabaret Showcase earlier this year as I was keen to see if I could combine my theatre experience with new techniques  that I was learning from my singing teacher.

I was amazed at how challenging it was but also how thoroughly satisfying. I had a wonderful time and I am currently working on a longer version of the piece that I can tour around Australia.

I would never have been able to do this without the support and experience of Melissa and Mark who helped me through script refinements, song presentation and performance technique. I learned about mic technique and lighting states and how to work with an audience.

I think communities can benefit enormously from both creating and observing music and stories told in a variety of ways within the genre of cabaret. The appeal of cabaret is how we can share our life experiences in order to connect with others from different backgrounds and ethnicities. Music as internal massage and theatre as communication are a powerful combination.  Audiences and performers can participate in and share a common joy in self expression.

I think any possibility  of enabling more people to experience the joy of music and storytelling is incredibly valuable. I totally endorse this project.”
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Ashleigh Kreveld

“As a performer who has participated twice in The Cabaret Showcases, I can attest to what a fabulous opportunity it is for a budding cabaret artist. Mark and Melissa not only guide and encourage the development of your show, through their practical direction and their own wealth of knowledge, but also they provide a platform to perform where previously this has not been possible for the up-and-coming artist.

The Cabaret Showcases grants each performer the chance to try out new material in a safe, supported environment, in a fabulous venue, without the burden of financial risk or having to commit to a full season. Debuting my cabaret Frankly Winehouse at The Cabaret Showcases last April allowed me the opportunity to test new material, under Mark & Melissa's guidance, before committing to a full run later on at The Butterfly Club for Melbourne Fringe, and a subsequent season in Perth for Fringe World Festival.

If it wasn't for the initial development of this show through the Showcase, I doubt I would have decided to pursue a full length season of the show, but having a previous run and being supported by industry professionals instilled in me the foundations to create an independent season.”
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Alexia May Brinsley

“As a Music Theatre performer I found the opportunity and concept of writing my own cabaret so rewarding. I can now say I have a fully staged, developed and practised one woman show ready to go! As part of The Cabaret Showcases, I got the opportunity to perform in a full theatre environment and also have my show professionally filmed! (I was able to use sections in my show reel).

Melissa's guidance through the initial script writing process and all the way through to the final run was exceptional. And Marks musical expertise was invaluable. As a team they both bring such a wealth of experience, mentoring your work and enabling you to create the best piece of cabaret.
I was really proud of my final performance, and recommend The Cabaret Showcases to any performer.”