PPT to present ‘Cats’ — opening night March 12
Published 12:00 am Thursday, March 5, 2015
One of the most popular musicals of all time coming to the Meroney
Since CATS first opened on the West End stage in 1981, it has become one of the world’s best-known and best-loved musicals. As of 2014, it is the third longest-running Broadway musical in history.
Based on T.S Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats, the musical tells the story of a tribe of cats called the Jellicles that meet on one special night each year, at the Jellicle Ball, where their wise and benevolent leader announces which of them will go up to The Heaviside Layer and be reborn into a whole new Jellicle life.
The show is completely told through music with virtually no spoken dialogue between songs. The songs of the musical comprise Eliot’s verse set to music by the composer, the principal exception being the most famous song from the musical, “Memory,” for which the lyrics were written by Trevor Nunn after an Eliot poem entitled “Rhapsody on a Windy Night.”
The original production was produced by Cameron Mackintosh (Les Misérables) and features an award- winning score composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber (Phantom of the Opera, Jesus Christ Superstar), with musical genres ranging from classical to pop, jazz, rock and electro- acoustic music and even includes hymn-like songs.
Costuming and dance are key elements in CATS, including a jaw: dropping 10-minute Jellicle Ball dance sequence. Darlene Krantz, a California based costume designer making her PPT debut, designed and constructed the eye-popping costumes.
The cast of the Piedmont Players production is comprised of a few PPT veterans joined by a number of new faces, including three Catawba College students and newcomers from as far away as Charlotte, Mooresville and Huntersville. Due to the physical demands of the show, this cast has rehearsed far more than the norm, practicing four hours per night Monday through Friday and eight hours every Saturday for more than a month.
PPT’s production of CATS, which shattered the Meroney opening day ticket sales record, reunites the creative team that brought you last season’s smash hit musical CHICAGO. Director and choreographer Tod A. Kubo, musical director Mike Wilkins, and set designer Reid Leonard will again combine their incredible talents to bring another show to the Meroney stage that will be talked about for years to come.
WANT TO GO?
March 12 – 14 and 18 – 21 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday matinee March 15 at 2:30 p.m.
Tickets at the Meroney box office at 704-633-5471 or piedmontplayers.com
Adults $18, Students/seniors $15
Meet the cast:
Alonzo: John Woodson
Bombalurina: Lara Williams
Bustopher Jones /Skimbleshanks: Paul Reeves Leopard
Carbucketty: Lauren Stacks
Cassandra: Erica Millarc
Demeter: Karen Christensen
Electra: Katie Weant
Grizabella: Jenny Carroll
Jellylorum / Griddlebone: Brittany Currie
Jennyanydots / Gumby: Wendy Weant
Quaxo/Macavity: Dairon McGraw
Mungojerrie: James Woodson
Munkustrap: Ben Henley
Old Deuteronomy / Gus / Growltiger: Traven Harrington
Plato: Daniel Brown
Rumpleteazer: Ashlyn Keller Sumner
Sillabub: Brooke Baldwin
Tantomile: Leah Campion
The Rum Tum Tugger: Charlton Alicea
Victoria: Ava Drexel
Mr. Mistofelees: Jim Reynolds
WINNER of 7 Tony Awards including Best Musical and Best Original Score
WINNER of 2 Laurence Olivier Awards including Best New Musical
Producing partners: Ed Brown and Dr. Frank Shafer