WHO wrote such provocative shows as Cabaret, Chicago and Kiss Of The Spider Woman?

If the names are not on the tip of your tongue – composer John Kander and lyricist Fred Ebb by the way – then that is one reason behind York Musical Theatre Company exploring these masters of bold and brassy Broadway musicals in the duo's "compilation" show The World Goes 'Round.

"This show is a rollercoaster ride, celebrating some of the pair’s best-loved songs and most brilliant and well-crafted numbers," says cast member and publicist Anna Mitchelson.

"These range from unforgettable classics such as Mr Cellophane, Maybe This Time and All That Jazz to thrilling up-tempo numbers Coffee In A Cardboard Cup and Money, Money, not forgetting the Cabaret title song that became a hit for the global star of many Kander and Ebb musicals, Liza Minnelli."

Directed by Paul Laidlaw at the piano, The World Goes 'Round will be staged at the John Cooper Studio Theatre @41Monkgate, York, from next Wednesday to Saturday with a cast of Anna Mitchelson, Jessa Liversidge, Matthew Ainsworth, Alexa Chaplin, John Haigh and Florence Taylor, all trimmed out in black polo necks and matching trousers.

"That allows us to put anything on that blank canvas," says Jessa. "It allows the character to come out through the songs, which we'll be performing on a thrust stage, with the theatre set up in cabaret style with a bar."

Enthusing over Kander & Ebb's prowess as songwriters, Anna says: "It's a show where anyone who's a fan of musical theatre should come because they should know these songs.

"Some of them were unknown to us in the cast, and though they're known on and off-Broadway, they're not familiar over here, but they're like Sondheim in terms of being about real life and how relationships break down.

"Like Sondheim put together the revue Side By Side By Sondheim, Kander & Ebb have put together a selection of their songs, but the difference is that they've written a whole new narrative. They go from young love with a rosy outlook to marriage and babies, to marriages breaking down."

"But the world keeps turning, so the narrative through the show is really important," says Jessa."But even though there's a narrative, the songs still stand alone, each song telling a different person's story at that time in their life."

A globe on stage is spun regularly to emphasise how the world keeps moving, and meanwhile the songs move on too. "The really well-known songs are given a new meaning with a different rhythm or a man singing a song previously sung by a woman," says Jessa.

"It's a show where you will laugh at a comedy moment one minute, then cry at a mental breakdown the next, and we just want people to learn about these songs, which for us is what this show is all about," concludes Anna.

Tickets for this week's 7.30pm shows cost £15 on 01904 623568 or at thelittleboxoffice.com/ymtc.