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Broadway Revival 12/4/17

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njgerhardt
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Broadway Revival 12/4/17

Post by njgerhardt » Sun 31. Dec 2017, 22:25

(I apologize that this is almost a month late, I've been busy with finals and the holidays.)

Cast:
Alonzo - Sam Lips
Bill Bailey/ Rum Tum Tugger - Tyler Hanes
Bombalurina - Dani Spiler
Carbuckety - Jacob Carr
Cassandra - Emily Grace Kersey
Coricopat - Ron Todorowski
Demeter - Samantha Sturm
Electra - Mallory Michaellann
Grizabella - Mamie Parris
Jellylorum - Sara Jean Ford
Jennyanydots - Sarah Marie Jenkins
Mistoffelees - Zachary Downer
Mungojerrie - Zachary Daniel Jones
Munkustrap - Andy Huntington Jones
Peter/Bustopher Jones/Asparagus - Christopher Gurr
Plato/Macavity - Marc A. Heitzman
Pouncival - Evan Kasprak
Rumpelteazer - Shonica Gooden
Sillabub - Jessica Cohen
Skimbleshanks - Aaron J. Albano
Tantomile - Emily Tate
Tumblebrutus - Andrew Wilson
VIctor/Old Deutoronomy - Nathaniel Stampley
Victoria - Claire Rathbun
The Cats Chorus - Colin Cuncliffe, Jessica Hendy, Madison Mitchell, Nathan Patrick Morgan, Megan Ort, Tug Watson


Overall, I do like it. It’s different. Very different. But, I don’t consider that a bad thing. I went in as blind as I could to the whole experience, not expecting to to be as different as it was. I was three rows back on far stage left. But even at the extreme angle, I never felt like I was missing out on anything. I’ve literally never understood the appeal of front row center until now.

I was under the impression that the choreography had only been mildly changed, when that’s really not the case at all. I’ve seen the original so much, both live and on video, that the changes were very jarring and I was unsure about it at first. I liked the new choreography in a lot of places, but I found the gimmick of characters using large balls to slide on very overused. That said- it grew on me and I was 110% into it by the end. I do think, however, that this jarring feeling was a result of the designs being so similar to the original’s. In fact, my favorite designs in the revival are the ones that are the most dramatic departures.

I love the increased interaction of Old Deuteronomy with the rest of the tribe, the increased tribes hostility towards Grizabella, the use of ACTUAL STAGE MAGIC in Mistoffelees!?, the whole Mavavity sequence (where it’s very clear he’s specifically targeting Demeter), Macavity’s new costume (which shares a similar silhouette with Tugger? I love that!), the fact that they understand which numbers are more popular, increased prop usage to emphasize the scale of the characters, and old racist grandpa Gus™️. I feel like what little narrative there is in CATS has been emphasized in this production. It feels a more overall cohesive than the original at times and it's far more telegraphed what’s actually happening in the more abstract moments. (Which, while it may bother some, was sorely needed for the less attentive/used to live theatre audience members.) To me, the stand out gems of the Revival are Gumbie Cat, Old Deuteronomy, Moments of Happiness, Gus: The Theatre Cat/Pekes and Pollicles, and Mistoffelees. A lot of the changes are things I personally would have implemented in a production.

I also loved the feel of the set. It was still the junkyard, though it was mildly different in design. It was all old English 80′s trash and felt like it was almost falling out into the audience. The set really captured the grimy feeling of a trash dump, where everything is densely crammed into cliffs of filth. It was gross and I really loved it. I’ve only ever seen the US tour and it’s infamous inflatable set before and the difference is literally night and day. I was also immediately struck by the size of the stage and how it was smaller than I was expecting. Then again, I live in a city that literally had one of the world’s largest indoor stages until they cut off 20 feet a year ago.

Overall, I liked it a lot. I don’t like it better than the original, but I don’t really like it any less either. I’d say it’s on par with it.

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MisToxic
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Location: Germany

Re: Broadway Revival 12/4/17

Post by MisToxic » Thu 4. Jan 2018, 10:35

Thanks for your contribution!
A lot of people have mixed feelings about this version, but glad you had fun!

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