Chicago Cabaret Professionals will mark its 11th anniversary Sunday, October 11, with a gala salute to Karen Mason, the onetime Chicago cabaret singer who has gone on to a successful Broadway career in such shows as Mamma Mia!, Hairspray, and Sunset Boulevard.
Mason, a nine-time winner of the Manhattan Association of Cabarets' MAC Award, hails from Arlington Heights and got her start in Chicago as a singing waitress at the now-defunct Lawrence of Oregano restaurant on Diversey. There she teamed up with the eatery's musical director, songwriter-pianist Brian Lasser (who died of AIDS in 1992), and the pair built a local career playing at such nightspots as Park West and the Le Pub before heading to New York.
The gala, Put on Your Sunday Clothes, will also honor local singer-actor Suzanne Petri, veteran pianist Bob Moreen, and cabaret producer Bradford Thacker. The event takes place at Park West, 322 W. Armitage, starting at 6:15 PM with a cocktail show hosted by Nan Mason and featuring Audrey Morris and other local talents. The main event begins at 7 PM. Tickets are $45 in advance (or $50 at the door) for reserved table seating and $25 in advance ($30 at the door) for general admission. Reserved table seating reservations can be made online at www.chicagocabaret.org or by calling 312-409-3106. General admission tickets at Ticketmaster and the Park West box office.