Indiana State University Newsroom

Anniversary 'Cabaret' pays homage to Crossroads Rep's musical heritage

June 25, 2015

Crossroads Repertory Theatre will have your toes tapping, mouth smiling and head full of song when it presents a "50th Anniversary Musical Cabaret." Opening night July 2 is sold out but additonal performances are scheduled for July 8, 18 and 24.

In honor of one of Terre Haute's most treasured theater traditions, the evening will feature two acts - the first half offering a look back at music featured on the Summer Theater/SummerStage/Crossroads stage the past 50 years and the second half glancing into the future of what's to come in the next 50 years.


"I hope the audience leaves the theater singing some of the songs of the past and looking up and learning the shows that CRT hopes to do in the future," said director and creator Michelle Azar. "I hope people leave talking about the CRT alumni and how exciting it was to see them perform again, and I hope they comment on what an exciting future CRT has in the new performers. I want people leaving with a smile and a song."

"Cabaret" also draws on another of Crossroads' strengths - tapping great local talent. Azar, a two-time music education alumna of Indiana State University in 2000 and 2006, is a teacher at Terre Haute North Vigo High School.

"I am thrilled, overjoyed and, honestly, a little overwhelmed," she said. "What an honor it is that I have been asked to be a part of something so important."Because of logistical and geographic limitations, Azar took a slightly different approach to crafting the "Cabaret" and let the talent pick their songs.

"The biggest challenge for me is that there is no real script. No template. And, not knowing the actors ahead of time, it's hard to pick music for them," she said. "So, we are taking a different approach to the way we're handling this particular project. But, I also think it is something that, so far, the cast seems to enjoy. It's not often actors get to pick exactly what they want to perform."

Several cast members are from Terre Haute, and one family - the Shutts - boasts three generations of performers, including Will Rupert, Jill Shutt and Chuck Shutt. Azar is a second-generation performer and is looking forward to singing with her father, George Azar.

"I ... have had the opportunity to work with almost all of these fine performers through the years here in Terre Haute. I think it is a great way to showcase what I think CRT should ultimately represent - talent, community and legacy," she said. "I'm hoping that we can feature both families in a song pulled from one of the cabarets that Summer Stage did a while back, while adding in some of the new CRT company singing harmonies with us."

The "50th Anniversary Musical Cabaret" runs at 7:30 p.m. July 2, 8, 18 and 24 in Indiana State's New Theater, 540 N. 7th St. Season tickets are available for $52 each, and single-production tickets are $15-20 for general admission.

To buy tickets or donate to Crossroads Repertory Theatre, go to or call the box office at 812-237-3333.

Photo: - Molley LeCaptain and Will Rupert are among performers featured in Crossroads Repertory Theater's "50th Anniversary Musical Cabaret," opening July 2 at Indiana State University's New Theater. (ISU/Angelique Bokamba)

Contact: David Valdez, instructor, department of theater at Indiana State University, or 812-237-3337

Writer: Libby Roerig, media relations assistant director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3790 or