Chicago's After Dark Award-Winning Pam Peterson presents: Custom Cabaret
"Riotously funny and wonderfully musical..an artistic sensation"
- Cabaret Scenes
Pam Peterson is the recipient of Chicago’s prestigious After Dark Award for Outstanding Cabaret Artist. She has performed with pops symphonies and big bands nationwide, and has played to packed houses and critical acclaim at Chicago’s premiere venues including Maxim’s, Park West, Davenport’s, Drury Lane, Bailiwick Theater and The Peninsula. A member of Actor’s Equity Association, Pam’s theater credits include Chicago’s renowned Victory Gardens Theater and the St. Louis Muny. She has appeared in TV spots for many Fortune 500 companies including Motorola, Walgreens, McDonald’s and Prudential. Pam continues to charm audiences with her feisty vocal duo, The Boomer Babes, her retro vocal trio, Stardust, and her musically divine vocal quartet, 4Now. Pam’s production company, Custom Cabaret, creates customized musical revues for special events.
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My Career So Far
From the early years of subjecting my siblings to Julie Andrews impersonations, through my high school lead in Bye-Bye Birdie, through Kansas City theme park stardom, I grew up thriving on stage performance. I got my Equity card when I was 20, performing a season at the St. Louis Muny, along with Vincent Price and Shirley Jones. Feeling the tug of fame and fortune, I abandoned my pursuit of a University of Kansas journalism degree, hijacked a sorority sister who had singing aspirations and a car, and took off for Broadway. We got as far as Chicago when the old Dodge broke down.
Being a native Chicagoan,
I quickly settled in the city and began scoring leads in professional productions at Victory Gardens, Drury Lane, Oak Park Festival Theatre, and various now-defunct theaters. A free-wheeling party girl at heart, I soon found myself regularly fronting jazz bands at nightclubs and events, leaving no time for legit theater. For many years, I channeled my acting chops into TV commercials and industrial films, portraying scads of moms and business execs, including a recurring role which I now find amusing in a notorious kind of way: “Claudia Page,” CFO of the scandal-ripped Arthur Andersen.
When it comes to variety, I like my life extra-spicy.
Luckily, it seems I have a knack for turning personal misadventure into fodder for cabaret acts. Some of my well-received solo shows include: “Scorched By The Torch,” “Funny, You Don’t Look Like a Lesbian” and “Whateverland… The Midlife Adventures of Peter Pam.”
I get a kick out of collaborating.
My longest-running group is the vocal trio Stardust, which I joined as a young sprig. We’re still going strong after 20+ years of boogie-woogie’n from coast to coast.
Recently I launched the vocal duo Boomer Babes, in which I team up with my funniest girlfriend to laud, lampoon, and marvel at life as a Baby Boomer. My newest co-creation is 4Now, a mighty foursome of soulful voices with an upbeat message.
The party doll in me
loves celebrating people’s personal milestones with Custom Cabaret. For this show, I gather information about the honoree and whip up a customized musical revue, complete with spoofs, favorite tunes and anecdotes.
Well, that fills you in on the basics. I must say if you’ve read this far without wandering, I really want you on my mailing list. I’ll keep you posted on upcoming shows, and I promise not to noodge you. Just contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
All the best,
Imagine a professional musical/comedy show based on the true story of you, your loved ones or your group…
Imagine your friends and colleagues howling with laughter and nodding in recognition as Broadway-quality singers capture the essence of your honored guest.
We at custom cabaret have an uncommon knack for transforming your unique life story into a musical work of art brimming with humor and inspiration. We are honored and delighted to create your personal masterpiece!
How do we do it? We start by gathering information about your history and what makes you tick. (Don’t worry - the process is actually quite fun!) We proceed to write a script that includes favorite songs, parodies, funny dialogue and other delights.
Performed by top-notch singers and musicians, the result is a full-blown musical extravaganza that you and your guests will always remember!
“Top-notch musical entertainers… a hoot and a half”
Come join The Boomer Babes as they fire up the fun in their hilarious musical comedy show celebrating their still-rockin’ generation!
Chicago’s After Dark Award-winning Pam Peterson and Jan Slavin have delighted audiences across the country with their rich musicality and wild wit. Joined by their musical director, Howard Pfeifer (composer of movie and TV themes, including ABC’s The Goode Family), The Boomer Babes will wow you with Broadway and pop favorites, smart parodies, rare cabaret gems and vintage flashbacks.
The Boomer Babes were featured on the CBS News with Jim Williams and have performed at some of Chicago’s top venues including Maxim’s, Davenport’s, Park West and Claudia Cassidy Theater. Their customized shows for special events have won rave reviews.
“Pam Peterson’s Birthday Show was a complete home run at my party! I was amazed at how skillfully she took simple facts about my life and wove them into customized songs. The show was touching, entertaining and absolutely hilarious! The performance was the topic of conversation for the rest of the evening. I would highly recommend Custom Cabaret for any special event.”
Carol Wennerstrom, Chicago
“For my mother’s birthday, we hired Pam Peterson’s duo, The Boomer Babes, to entertain. While we thought we would get a few nice songs, Pam gave us a full-blown cabaret extravaganza, complete with personalized, hilarious lyrics that absolutely captured my mother to a “T.” The Boomer Babes were the hit of the party, and made it a fun-filled evening for all to enjoy.
Ilyce Tamkin, Winnetka, IL
“I cannot rave enough about Pam Peterson’s wonderful singing tribute to my significant other, Bud. I have been inundated with calls about Pam and her fabulous group, and I am sure the raves will continue for some time to come. The question most asked is, ‘How did they know so much about Bud?’ The fact that she interviewed Bud, as well as his daughter, just blew everyone away. So many people want her number, and I know that to share her with my friends is a great compliment to both of us. I am so happy that Pam was a part of the successful, lively, intimate and wonderful evening!”
Barbara Zoub, Chicago
“Pam did an incredible show at our 35th wedding anniversary party, based on our life story. The script and spoofs were hilarious, and her singing is fantastic! Everybody loved it. We’re having her back for our 40th!
If you want your party to be just right,
Call Pam to make it a joy and delight.”
Lynn & Gerry Sobel, Chicago
“What a rare treat I had last Saturday when I met the remarkably talented Pam Peterson. We were thrilled to have her perform at an event for our charity, Project Linus, which donates handmade blankets to sick and traumatized children. She “wowed” the crowd with her incredible voice, fabulous custom lyrics and engaging personality. Her wonderful writing ability provided a perfect tribute to the women who create handmade blankets for the children in need. The volunteers were thrilled, not only because of Pam’s beautiful voice and engaging presentation, but because her warmth and admiration for their work and generosity was obvious. It is my pleasure to recommend Pam as an extremely talented singer, songwriter, performer and goodwill ambassador!”
Linda Neuman, Project Linus Coordinator, North & Central Chicagoland
"DO NOT EAT O DRINK during Pam's Custom Cabaret. You are guaranteed to get the timing wrong and add to the entertainment by spitting clear across the table. Whether you are looking for humor or hubris, a review of cherished memories or a preview of old age or wedded bliss--whatever the occasion, Pam takes your event and makes it her own, choosing just the right music, writing truly clever lyrics that will bring out the best (or worst) in you, and performing it all with great panache. My guests were well and truly entertained and utterly enchanted."
Allison B., Northbrook, IL
“My 70th Birthday party was wonderful!! This was because of the stellar performance of the Boomer Babes. Pam and Jan not only are extremely personable, adorable and delightful, but Pam was able to adapt their material to my life, times and personality… a not so easy task done cleverly and with a lot of humor! Everyone wanted their number so that their own parties could be as personal and fun as mine was.”
Susanne Glink, Chicago
“Pam Peterson has entertained at two of our family parties: my parents’ 60th wedding anniversary and my father’s 90th birthday. Her singing made both of those parties a success. For the anniversary, she told the story of my parents’ romance and marriage, using their favorite songs from the 30’s, 40’s & 50’s. It was a big hit with all the guests! One thing I like so much about Pam is her ability to work so well with her clients and customize her repertoire. For my father’s 90th birthday, she built the show around our list of “Dad’s favorite show tunes.” We received many thank you calls the next day, telling us what a great party it was. Pam is so much fun, exudes lots of energy, is easy and cooperative to work with, and very professional. I would highly recommend her.”
Susan Kaplan, Denver
“On behalf of my family, I would like to thank you for your performance at our 60th Anniversary Party. You really "made" this event, and the time and effort that you put into your show really paid off. Incorporating our family history into songs from the 40s and 50s made my in-laws laugh and cry. I'll never forget the look on their faces while you sang to them, as well as the rest of the audience.”
Linda Poznansky, Buffalo Grove, IL
“Last week I attended the Project Linus luncheon and wanted to let you know how very much I enjoyed your performance. The energy, fun and pure joy you bring to the stage had me totally involved. I found your rich, crystal clear voice to be equaled only by the charm and wittiness of your lyrics. Each song was so perfectly adapted to our work that I almost forgot their original form. Thank you for a wonderful afternoon. I look forward to seeing you at a future event.”
Gail Pierce, Deerfield, IL
“Magnificent instrument... so pure... wacky sense of humor... hilarious... a real dancer-singer.”
--Andrea Marcovicci, “Queen of Cabaret,” Los Angeles, CA
“She can be hilariously schizo one moment and mesmerizingly simple the next. She can soar to the sky in a dynamic musical soliloquy or cut to the heart with a tender ballad. But no matter what her musical choice, the honesty and charm that Ms. Peterson puts into every song and her infectious and irresistible personality come together to make what she brings to the world of cabaret something very special indeed.”
--Chicago After Dark Awards, October 2006
“Some freak out, some go into denial, some simply lie. And some approach aging and embrace it with open arms and a twinkle in their eyes that belie the years. That’s what Pam Peterson did with the riotously funny and wonderfully musical Whateverland… The Midlife Adventures of Peter Pam… An artistic sensation… perfectly constructed and flawlessly performed, Whateverland is going to be hard to beat come year’s end for the title of the year’s best show.”
--Cabaret Scenes, July 2006
“Pam Peterson, my award-winning colleague from Chicago’s busy cabaret community has a huge vocal range and brings powerful physicality to music. Her opening demonstration was an original comedy tune about middle age. (If I am nice to her, maybe she’ll let me mooch it one day.)… The show had a lovely arc, ending with Peterson’s powerhouse rendition of Defying Gravity from the musical Wicked.”
--Cabaret Hotline, September 2007
“It was a riotous and fabulously musical evening that Pam Peterson and Jan Slavin gave us when they looked at life from a certain age and perspective in their zany and zinging “Boomer Babes,” and then Peterson had us eating out of her hand again when she took the stage alone in Funny, You Don’t Look Like a Lesbian. Two knockouts, too terrific.”
--Gay Chicago, December 2005
“Pam Peterson and Jan Slavin, better known as The Boomer Babes, are feisty and foxy… they’re turning up the heat…”
--Jim Williams, CBS News, Chicago, August 2005
“She sparkles… filling the air with a voice far bigger than the package it comes from… easily one of the sexiest cabaret singers I have ever had the pleasure of watching perform.”
--Chicago Arts & Entertainment, February 2004
“Pam Peterson exudes an instantly likable personality and inviting charm… holding us firmly through the power of her alternately husky belt and airy upper register, a duality she uses to great effect.
--Gay Chicago, February 2004
“Magnificent instrument... so pure... wacky sense of humor... hilarious... a real dancer-singer.”
--Andrea Marcovicci, “Queen of Cabaret”
--Karen Mason, Broadway Star/ 9-Time MAC Award Winner
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