The Ultimate Guide to The New York Cabaret Scene

If you are planning a trip to New York and want to experience some vibrant and exciting nightlife, you should go to a cabaret show. Take a look below at some of the top cabaret venues New York has to offer.

NYC #23

Le Scandal

If you want to see circus, burlesque, and live music all in one place, all in one night, take a trip to Le Scandal. Le Scandal is a popular and longstanding New York variety show venue. There is an impressive cross section of performers including comedians, contortionists, acrobats, striptease, trapeze, jugglers, jazz singers, blues singers, sword swallowers and belly dancers. These fantastic performances are all scored against live music from the in-house orchestra.

Joe’s Pub

If you want opulence as well as entertainment, plan a visit to Joe’s Pub. This lavish velvet draped venue provides an intimate atmosphere and fantastic acoustics. Joe’s Pub is renowned for creating a space for emerging artists, as well as showcasing established performers. Amazing talent from all over the world regularly attract a number of A-list celebrities. Shows at Joes Pubs are diverse and have included cabaret, dance, world music, singer-songwriters, jazz, country, and indie performers. Due to its popularity, it is advisable to buy tickets in advance.

Don’t Tell Mama

Don’t Tell Mama is a world famous entertainment venue that has a piano bar, a restaurant and two cabaret showrooms. You will be spoiled for choice. The venue itself was established in 1982, and now features performances of music, comedy and spoken word that go on till the early hours of the morning. There is an open-mic policy in the piano bar, so if you want to get involved, you can be a part of the performance. You can catch a show any night of the week, and there are matinees on Saturday and Sundays.

The Box

If you want to experience titillating cabaret and burlesque performance, you need to go to The Box. This Twenties style venue has been compared to a three-ring circus, and oozes decadence. Guests are expected to follow suit and dress with glamour in mind. The popularity and extraordinary experience provided by The Box mean that tickets expensive. If you want to go, make sure that you book tickets that coincide with your visit. When you go, keep in mind that you are not permitted to use phones or cameras inside.

The Duplex

If you want to experience some old school New York lounge elegance, you need to go to one of the cities oldest cabaret theatres. The Duplex was established in the 1950’s and moved to its current location in the 80’s. The standard of performance here is high but accessible. There is a piano bar downstairs, and like Don’t Tell Mama, there are open-mic sessions where you can perform on stage. Upstairs you will find The Duplex, a small stage and a big party.

Photo by Thomas Leuthard via Flickr Creative Commons