UCO’s Broadway Tonight series opens its new season, Oklahoma Voices, with a performance by veteran Broadway actress, cabaret legend and Oklahoma native KT Sullivan.
In addition to performing on Broadway, Sullivan built a reputation overseas with her West End debut in Vienna to Weimar. She has also appeared on TV and has a successful recording career with seven albums, including Crazy World, to her name.
It’s perhaps as a cabaret performer that she’s best known. That is how Greg White, director of UCO’s Music Theater program and producer of the Broadway Tonight series, came to know her. He used to be a regular at Sullivan’s New York cabaret shows at notable venues like the Algonquin Hotel, Café Carlyle and Triad Theatre.
White was surprised to discover that Sullivan had never performed in Oklahoma City.
“I’m honored to be the one to bring KT back home to share her talent with Oklahoma audiences,” White said. “KT is absolutely fascinating to me. She’s this sophisticated international cabaret diva, and yet she is from small town Oklahoma (Boggy Depot).”
White said that Sullivan’s unique combination of sophistication, girl-next-door charm and irresistible wit makes her an unforgettable performer, but she is first and foremost an actress and a storyteller.
“Her ability to transport an audience through song puts her in a league of her own,” he said. “She’s one of those performers that holds the audience in the palm of her hand. Every song is a one-act play.”
For her visit to the University of Central Oklahoma’s Mitchell Hall Theatre, Sullivan will perform Colored Lights, a semi-autobiographical one-woman show of classic theatrical pieces that humorously depict a singer’s ups and downs. She will be accompanied by Ted Firth on the piano.
The set list will include songs from Sullivan’s Broadway career, including ones from Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and The Threepenny Opera (an ill-fated production she appeared in with Sting), as well as many standards from the Great American Songbook.
“Audiences are in for an entertaining treat as KT demonstrates her exceptional voice, comedic timing and colorful theater anecdotes that will entertain all ages,” White said.
In addition to her performance of Colored Lights, Sullivan will lead a master class that is open to the public at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Y-Chapel on the UCO campus.
In keeping with the theme of Oklahoma Voices, all of the guest artists in this season of Broadway Tonight are homegrown.
“Oklahoma has such an incredible range of diverse talents. KT, Sandi Patty and Jimmy Webb were already on my short list,” White said. “Once I started noticing the thread, the collective history, I knew that we needed to celebrate who we are and what we’ve shared with the world.”
White went on to say that while the season might seem to be about the familiar, it will also challenge audiences, opening their eyes to aspects of Oklahoma they’ve yet to discover.
7:30 p.m. Friday
Mitchell Hall Theatre
100 N. University Drive, Edmond