Gulfshore Playhouse will bring Broadway to Naples this month. Naples’ premier professional theatre will showcase the talents of Klea Blackhurst, Natalie Douglas, and Lora Lee Gayer in its Broadway Cabaret Series with New York’s Leading Ladies beginning February 11.
“Cabarets offer an intimate setting for audiences to connect with the performers and explore the storytelling aspects of these well-known musical numbers,” said Kristen Coury, founder and producing artistic director of Gulfshore Playhouse. “Our Broadway Cabaret Series brings some of the best singers from New York to Naples, where local audiences can enjoy both their immense talents and their interpretations of much-loved songs from iconic Broadway shows.”
Master of Ceremonies John McDaniel will host the series and accompany the performers on piano. A Grammy- and Emmy-winning music director, composer, and conductor, McDaniel famously led the band on the Rosie O’ Donnell talk show. He’s worked on nine Broadway shows, including Annie Get Your Gun, starring Bernadette Petters, Catch Me if You Can, Grease, and more.
Klea Blackhurst will kick off the series from February 11-14. A singer, comedienne, and Ethel Merman enthusiast, Blackhurst will take audiences on a journey through Broadway history with her vocals and hilarious personality. Blackhurst has dominated stages across the country, performing at venues like Carnegie Hall and the London Palladium in roles such as Dolly Levi in Hello, Dolly!, Miss Lemon in The Nutty Professor, and Mama Rose in Gypsy.
Natalie Douglas will take the stage February 18-21 to transport audiences to a 1940s New York City nightclub scene. Called “a true force of nature” by the Times (UK), Douglas is known for her award-winning sultry voice. She has performed in the renowned Birdland and Feinstein’s/54 Below cabaret scenes and was recognized by the Manhattan Association of Cabarets & Clubs and BroadwayWorld. As an actor, she has appeared in The Atrainplays and off-Broadway in The People vs. Mona.
Naples native-turned-Broadway star Lora Lee Gayer will conclude the series February 25-28. Gayer’s incredible range will dazzle audiences with Broadway classics, jazz tunes, and contemporary hits. Gayer has graced the Broadway stage in hit musicals like Holiday Inn, Follies, and Doctor Zhivago. The award-winning performer is also the founder of The Hysterical Womxn’s Society, a nonprofit focused on giving platforms to those fighting for human rights.
Members of the creative team are scenic designer Steve TenEyck; lighting designer Dalton Hamilton; and sound designer John Kiselica.
Thursday, Friday, and Sunday Broadway Cabaret Series performances will take place at The Norris Center at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday performances will take place from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets are $45; three-show packages are available for $110. Tickets can be purchased here.