Glee Club Cabarets: The best-kept secret of Elder High School


Elder High School is famous for its many traditions. The dedication of Elder to its Catholic Faith, curriculum, and extracurricular activities are just some of what makes Elder stand out among other schools.

Elder’s Glee Club is one of its most well-known activities. Everyone knows about the Glee Club concerts, and that we perform at various fundraisers and miscellaneous functions around the city, but very few know about the cabarets that are performed by singers of the Glee Club- and which feature singers from some of Seton’s ensembles- throughout the year.

The actual definition of a cabaret is “Entertainment held in a nightclub or restaurant while the audience eats or drinks at tables.” This is a fairly accurate description of what one would find at an Elder cabaret.

The atmosphere is more exciting than what the given definition of a cabaret leads on. The definition makes a cabaret seem very proper and ordinary. But, as I am sure you know, Elder doesn’t do ordinary!

The atmosphere at an Elder cabaret is similar to that of a party. Family and friends of the guys and girls performing in the cabaret bring lots of food to share with each other. Complimentary beer and pop flow the whole evening (the beer for adults only, of course!). A good time is had by all that attend.

The audience gets a chance to participate in the program with the ever favorite sing-along portion of the night. The ensembles debut the new music for that school year at the first cabaret of the year, and as the year goes on, the audience learns the music and the whole cabaret usually becomes a sing along!

About four cabarets take place every year, the most anticipated being the 2-night Irish Cabaret. The Irish Cabaret takes place around St. Patrick’s Day every year, and is performed by Elder students and some alumni only, the Seton girls sit this cabaret out. The Irish Cabaret is a no-surprise-sell-out every year, with tickets being vaporized just a few weeks after going on sale.

This behemoth cabaret- starting at eight o’clock- usually doesn’t end until anywhere around ten-thirty to ten forty-five. This is on account of the nearly twenty songs that are performed throughout the night. The Irish Cabaret is not just singing, though. The night usually features Irish dancing, (by professionals, the students do not Irish dance, I promise) theme basket raffles and a split the pot. And as anyone who has ever attended an Irish Cabaret can tell you, the evening is not complete without the comedic stylings of the one and only Mr. Dave Allen.

Liza Minnelli enjoying herself at the Elder Irish Cabaret (get it? CABARET ha ha...ha)
Liza Minnelli enjoying herself at the Elder Irish Cabaret (get it? CABARET ha ha…ha)

These cabarets have been going strong for over 30 years, with every last one taking place in the undercroft of St. William Church: Fr. Reardon Hall. Cabarets are accompanied by Mr. Allen and Ms. Samoya of course, but also the Starlight Band, a group of volunteer musicians who have been playing for our schools’ cabarets since the beginning.

The next time you go to spend money on a ticket to the movies or a sporting event, consider spending it instead on a ticket to an Elder Cabaret.