It might have been a disappointing year at the movies, but cabaret had a bumper crop of quality in 2000. We took in 266 cabaret shows during the year. What follows is the best of them in a wide variety of categories, both serious and whimsical. As you will see, we did not limit ourselves (or stretch ourselves) to the top 10 in any category in the lists that follow; some lists run longer than 10 and some are shorter. The point is that these are the best of Y2K.

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Amanda McBroom
Amanda McBroom
FEMALE VOCALIST, MAJOR ENGAGEMENT:
1) Amanda McBroom/Joe's Pub
2) Sally Mayes/FireBird Café
3) Polly Bergen/Feinstein's at the Regency
4) Linda Eder/Feinstein's at the Regency
5) Andrea Marcovicci/Oak Room
6) Barbara Cook/Feinstein's at the Regency
7) Karen Akers/Oak Room
8) Barbara Brussell/Oak Room
9) Karen Mason/Arci's Place
10) Sharon McNight/Don't Tell Mama
11) KT Sullivan with Larry Woodard/FireBird Café
12) Lorna Dallas/FireBird Café
13) Baby Jane Dexter/Firebird Cafe
14) Susannah McCorkle/Oak Room
15) Natalie Douglas/FireBird Café
16) Christine Andreas/Oak Room

FEMALE VOCALIST:
1) Julie Reyburn/Judy*s Chelsea
2) Audrey Lavine/Judy*s Chelsea
3) Teri Lynn Paul/FireBird Café
4) Christine Lavin/FireBird Café
5) Lisa Asher/Arci's Place
6) Marnie Baumer/FireBird Café
7) Natalie Gamsu/Oak Room
8) Jeanne MacDonald/FireBird Café
9) Christine Pedi/FireBird Café

MALE VOCALIST, MAJOR ENGAGEMENT:
1) Jason Graae/Arci's Place
2) Tom Andersen/FireBird Café
3) Michael Feinstein/Feinstein's at the Regency (holiday show)
4) Steve Ross/FireBird Café (both shows)
5) Robert Cuccioli/Arci's Place
6) BD Wong/Joe's Pub
7) Charles Cermele/FireBird Café
8) Glen Campbell-Jimmy Webb/Feinstein's at the Regency
9) Sam Harris/Joe's Pub

MALE VOCALIST:
1) Doug Ladnier/FireBird Café
2) Eric Michael Gillett/Judy*s Chelsea
3) Steven Lutvak/Arci's Place
4) Scott Coulter/Don't Tell Mama
5) Jack Donahue/FireBird Café
6) Mark Nadler/Arci's Place
7) Jim Caruso with Billy Stritch/Arci's Place
8) David Gurland/FireBird Café
9) Sammy Goldstein/Don't Tell Mama
10) Chris Coleman/FireBird Café
11) Bobby Belfry/Arci's Place
12) Tim Draxl/FireBird Café

BEST SHOW FEATURING A CONTEMPORARY SONGWRITER'S WORK:
1) William Finn/Joe's Pub
2) David Zippel/Joe's Pub
3) Barry Kleinbort/Laurie Beechman Theatre
4) Portia Nelson/Don't Tell Mama
5) John Bucchino/FireBird Café
6) Francesca Blumenthal/FireBird Café
7) Heisler & Goldrich/FireBird Café
8) Amanda Green/FireBird Café

BEST SHOW FEATURING A LATE SONGWRITER'S WORK:
Beyond the Cradle: The Music of Marc Blitzstein/Joe's Pub

BEST DUOS:
1) Judi Connelli & Suzanne Johnston/FireBird Café
2) Amanda McBroom & Ann Hampton Callaway/92nd Street Y

Julie Halston
Julie Halston
BEST COMEDY:
1) Julie Halston/FireBird Café
2) Joy Behar/Don't Tell Mama (at Angela La Greca's Monday Nite Madness)
3) Ron Poole (The Poole Party)/Don't Tell Mama
4) Mario Cantone/The Duplex 50th Anniversary Show

BEST JAZZ IN A CABARET CLUB:
1) Cleo Laine & John Dankworth/Feinstein's at the Regency
2) Dee Dee Bridgewater/Feinstein's at the Regency
3) Judy Barnett/Oak Room
4) Martha Lorin/FireBird Café
5) Jay Leonhart/Oak Room
6) Billy Stritch/FireBird Café

BEST CABARET SHOW IN A THEATER:
Rita Gardner at the Sullivan Street Playhouse

BEST DEBUT SHOW:
Julie Reyburn/Judy*s Chelsea

BEST BENEFITS (in alphabetical order):
Cabaret on Record/Triad
Teddy Cares/Judy*s Chelsea
Tim DiPasqua/Triad

BEST COMBINED BILL:
Scott Barbarino & The Bev Naps, Bobby Peaco, and Terri White in a series honoring last year's MAC Award winners at Arci's Place

BEST VARIETY SHOW:
1) Jamie deRoy & Friends/Laurie Beechman Theatre
2) Angela LaGreca's Monday Nite Madness/Don't Tell Mama
3) The Poole Party/Don't Tell Mama

BEST GUEST STAR:
Sidney Myer

BEST FIND IN A VARIETY SHOW:
1) George Wurzbach in Jamie deRoy & friends/Laurie Beechman Theatre
2) Modern Man (of which George Wurzbach is also a member) in Jamie deRoy & friends/Laurie Beechman Theatre

BEST DISCOVERY OF THE YEAR:
Jim Pallone singing with Lana Rein in The Parlor upstairs at The FireBird Restaurant

BEST NEW VOICE:
Kane Alexander/FireBird Cafe

BEST CHARACTERIZATION:
Daniel Isengart/Judy*s Chelsea

Beaman as Dietrich
Beaman as Dietrich
BEST IMPERSONATION (in alphabetical order):
James Beaman as Lauren Bacall/Don't Tell Mama (most outrageously funny)
James Beaman as Marlene Dietrich/FireBird Café (most daringly serious)
Steven Brinberg as Barbra Streisand/Arci's Place (best duet with himself)
Tommy Femia as Judy Garland/Don't Tell Mama (best vocal impersonation)
Richard Skipper as Carol Channing/Don't Tell Mama (best rapport with the audience)

BEST MAKEUP:
1) Go Mahan/Judy*s Chelsea
2) James Beaman as Dietrich/FireBird Café

BEST TECHNICAL DIRECTOR:
Michael Barbieri at Judy*s Chelsea

BETTER THAN YOU WOULD EXPECT AWARD:
Tony Danza at Feinstein's at the Regency

WORSE THAN YOU WOULD EXPECT (NON-)AWARD:
Melissa Errico/Joe's Pub

MOST AMAZING SHOW:
Marc Salem at Feinstein's at the Regency (he probably divined months ago that he would be on this list)

LOUDEST SHOW OF THE YEAR:
Darlene Love at Joe's Pub

BEST THEATRICAL SHOW IN A CABARET ROOM:
Indigo Rat/Rose's Turn

BEST DIRECTION:
John-Richard Thompson for Indigo Rat

SPECIAL DRAMATIC PERFORMANCE AWARDS:
Bobby Peaco and Tony Lauria in the cast of Indigo Rat

BEST "BY INVITATON ONLY" SHOW:
The all-Sondheim show sung by superb male vocalists celebrating the birthday of NY Daily News' Wayman Wong

MOST HAUNTING LIVE PERFORMANCES OF SINGLE SONGS
(in alphabetical order):

Tom Andersen singing "As I Remember Him" (Don't Tell Mama)
Mark Coffin singing "Skylark" (Town Hall)
Judi Connelli singing "Terrific Band" (FireBird Café)
Amanda McBroom singing "Dance" (Joe's Pub)
Terri White singing "Things Change" (Arci's Place & Rose's Turn)

CABARET RECORD LABELS MAKING THE BEST SPLASH:
1) LML
2) Fynsworth Alley
3) Jerome Records

BEST CD LAUNCH PARTY OF THE YEAR:
For Lennie Watts' "I Want...You Want" at Don't Tell Mama

MOST AMUSING & SPIRITED CLOTHING CHOICES BY PERFORMERS:
1) Amanda Green for her chiapet-like outfit on New Year's Eve at Arci's Place
2) Go Mahan for whatever at Judy*s Chelsea
3) Ron Poole for his loud print shirts at Don't Tell Mama