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What Is Cats The Musical About

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Thanks To Cats The Musical Ts Eliot Received A Posthumous Tony

‘Memory’ Elaine Paige | Cats The Musical

Because most of the songs in Cats are almost verbatim recitations of Eliots poems, hes regarded as its primary lyricisteven though he died in 1965, long before the show was conceived. Still, Eliots contributions earned him a 1983 Tony for Best Book of a Musical. A visibly moved Valerie Eliot took the stage to accept this prize on her late spouses behalf. Tonights honor would have given my husband particular pleasure because he loved the theatre, she told the crowd. Eliot also shared the Best Original Score Tony with Andrew Lloyd Webber.

What Did The Cats Look Like

In the stage musical, the performers dress in tight fur-patterned suits with fuzzy collars, arm warmers, leg warmers and fuzzy headpieces with ears. They wear cat face paint. These extremely tight catsuits are the source of much childhood confusion or distress surrounding the Cats VHS.

In the film, there are no catsuits or face paint! The cat fur, tails, ears, and whiskers are added digitally.

It was one of the coolest things Ive seen, Taylor Swift, who plays Bombalurina, told Entertainment Weekly. I want to know what else Taylor Swift has seen.

Its not animated, Swift said. And its not motion capture. Its somehow this new way that hasnt been done before. And theyre giving us a tail that moves naturally, and ears and whiskers.

Andrew Lloyd Webber himself appeared on Good Morning Britain and confirmed that theyve got this technique which isnt like CGI, but it turns you into a cat.

So you know its Taylor Swift … but shes a cat. He said that Taylor Swift wanted to see that part of the trailer 10 times.

Jennyanydots The Old Gumbie Cat

Played by: Rebel Wilson

Jennyanydots is a goofy old tabby cat who lazes around all day and spends her nights teaching the basement vermin various household skills, etiquette, and performing arts. Under her tutelage, the mice learn to crochet, the cockroaches become helpful boy scouts, and the beetles form a tap-dancing troupe. Rebel Wilson is a perfect match for such a multifaceted, eccentric, and amusing gumbie cat .

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Why Is Cats Getting Bad Reviews

While there was scattered praise for the commitment of Hooper and the cast to their vision, the reviews took issue with the CGI technology, the thin plot, the overuse of the unexplained word jellicle, the cockroaches with childrens faces imposed on them, the strangely sexual energy of the cat-humans and even the

Set And Costume Design

13 Memorable Facts About Cats the Musical

Napier began designing the set in November 1980, wanting “a place where cats might congregate together, which also included maximum room for dancing”. The set of Cats consists of a junkyard filled with oversized props to give the illusion that the cast are the size of actual cats it remains the same throughout the show without any scene changes. Over 2,500 of these scaled-up props were used to fill the whole auditorium in the original Broadway production.

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Grizabella The Glamour Cat

Played by: Jennifer Hudson

This aging starlet is now decrepit, depressed, and shamefully rejected by the rest of the Jelliclesthink Sunset Boulevards Norma Desmond with more self-awareness and very raggedy fur. Even if the Cats original cast recording wasnt the soundtrack for your childhood road trips, you might have heard Grizabellas song Memory its been covered by Barbra Streisand, Celine Dion, Barry Manilow, Glees Chris Colfer, and more. American Idol alum Jennifer Hudson will bring her Academy Award-winning talents to the role of Grizabella in the film.

Ok But Honestly Can We Talk About The Cgi Why Not Do Makeup

For what its worth, the traditional Cats makeup isnt exactly a walk in the park. Both Gooden and Pazcoguin tell Teen Vogue that, during their Broadway run, the actors were tasked with applying their own feline makeup a process that took an inordinate amount of time. We all used to arrive at the theatre two hours before the show just to paint on our cat faces and give them time to settle and dry, Gooden remembers, joking that shes jealous of the film actors who don’t have to paint their own cat features. Each and every cat face is designed specifically to each cat in the show, she adds. Some are more intricate than others, but all require extra time to paint on, while making sure you had time to warm up your body and voice before curtain up.

For Pazcoguin, that extra effort was part of the artistic process. It was almost a rite of passage learning how to bring your cat to life through the application of the individual features, and the daily transformation really helped me get into me character.

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Teaching Banking And Publishing

After leaving Merton, Eliot worked as a schoolteacher, most notably at Highgate School in London, where he taught French and Latin: his students included John Betjeman. He subsequently taught at the Royal Grammar School, High Wycombe in Buckinghamshire. To earn extra money, he wrote book reviews and lectured at evening extension courses at University College London and Oxford. In 1917, he took a position at Lloyds Bank in London, working on foreign accounts. On a trip to Paris in August 1920 with the artist Wyndham Lewis, he met the writer James Joyce. Eliot said he found Joyce arrogant, and Joyce doubted Eliot’s ability as a poet at the time, but the two writers soon became friends, with Eliot visiting Joyce whenever he was in Paris. Eliot and Wyndham Lewis also maintained a close friendship, leading to Lewis’s later making his well-known portrait painting of Eliot in 1938.

Charles Whibley recommended T.S. Eliot to Geoffrey Faber. In 1925 Eliot left Lloyds to become a director in the publishing firm Faber and Gwyer , where he remained for the rest of his career. At Faber and Faber, he was responsible for publishing distinguished English poets, including W. H. Auden, Stephen Spender, Charles Madge and Ted Hughes.

What Does Jellicle Mean

Jellicle Songs (Part 1) | Cats the Musical

The cats in Cats are Jellicle Cats. Its difficult to pinpoint what exactly jellicle is supposed to mean, but according to a Telegraph report, the phrase comes from T.S. Eliots very young niece trying to pronounce the words dear little cat.

From the song The Jellicle Ball, we learn that Jellicle Cats are black and white, Jellicle Cats are rather small, Jellicle Cats are merry and bright, and pleasant to hear when they caterwaul . That being said, the same song confirms that Jellicle Cats are of moderate size, so what is the truth? Additionally, the cats that attend the Jellicle Ball are of a variety of coat patterns far more than the simple black and white that the lyrics suggest.

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What Age Is Cats The Musical Suitable For

AGES 4-9 Children are transfixed by the human-size felines that interact with the audience throughout the show. AGES 10+ Energetic choreography, imaginative costumes, the unique cat make-up and an amazing set that takes up thå entire theatre help create a visually and musically spectacular experience for all ages.

It Introduces Lots Of New Stuff But The New Stuff Just Makes Cats More Confusing Not Less

You might not think it possible that Cats the musical could become more baffling, given the addition of new contextual material to its random and barely there plot. But you would be so, so wrong.

For instance: The movie starts with our abused and abandoned cat, Victoria , being dumped on the street by her former owners and then immediately inducted into the ineffable world of Jellicle-ness. Theres not a moments pause between these events. She doesnt even get a moment to be sad! Its just thump-bounce-thump, welp, heres your new life, kid. This isnt just bad pacing, its a muddled delineation of exposition. The movie then goes one step further and dramatically presents the idea that Victoria needs to learn her own secret Jellicle name. It stands to reason that this development means Victorias narrative will end with her finding out what that name is. Nope! Never happens.

Then theres the backstory for Grizabella, Jennifer Hudsons once-glamorous dance cat whos now, erm, a fallen cat prostitute. The details regarding Grizabellas journey from celebrated performer to sex worker have never been clear in any version but in the film, theyre made even more bizarre. Thats because another cat, Macavity , is now, somehow, her pimp and a catnip pusher. So instead of just having to accept cat sex workers, we have to accept an entire feline underground of sex and drug trafficking.

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What Does Cats’ Ending Mean

So what exactly does the ending to Cats mean? Well, it’s fairly straightforward… kind of. Regardless, it’s an ending that strikes true to the original, complete with Judi Dench’s final number “The Ad-Dressing of Cats” Basically Grizabella lived her life and suffered, and was rewarded with a new life. Whether or not this is literal or metaphorical is never quite clear, even in the musical Cats. The plot of the movie hints that the goal is for the cats to be reborn, this time as exactly who they’ve always wanted to be. For some this means young and beautiful, and for others it means some new power. But Griz is the winner of the Jellicle Choice, so the happy ending is for her to enjoy.

Since Cats premiered as a show on Broadway, the show’s ending has been discussed by musical fans. Many consider the Heaviside Layer to simply mean heaven– I mean, they sound similar. Since Grizabella was an old cat, Cats‘ ending could represent the natural circle of life and death.

There are also darker theories about what the Heaviside Layer could symbolize. Some of these include a ritual sacrifice, which certainly makes Cats‘ ending less happy. Another is that the kitties in Cats are actually in purgatory, and that the Heaviside Layer is the real heaven. Clearly it’s up for interpretation, which is why moviegoers may be puzzled by the ending of Tom Hooper’s Cats movie.

What Is A Jellicle

cats the musical has cancelled all shows in malaysia

The cats in the show refer to themselves as Jellicles. The term has a long history: its a contraction of the phrase dear little cats, turned into a nonsense term in poetic style for Eliots 1936 poemPollicle Dogs and Jellicle Cats. In Eliots imagination, Jellicles were black-and-white cats with nocturnal tendencies. But in the Lloyd Webber musical, they embody a broader array of colors and looks. One of their most important traditions is gathering for the annual Jellicle Ball. At the Ball, one is chosen to ascend to the Heaviside Layer a kind of cat heaven to be reborn.

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Grizabella Was A Discovery

Grizabella the Glamour Cat, the downtrodden outcast who sings Memory and whose ascent to the Heaviside Layer is more or less the entire plot of Cats doesnt exist in Old Possum. But once Valerie Eliot, T.S. Eliots widow, gave her blessing for Lloyd Webber to adapt her husbands poems, she began to dig up some of his unpublished material.

There was a poem about Grizabella, which according to Valerie Eliot her husband had found too depressing for children. There was also a letter T.S. Eliot had written to his publisher that mentioned a gathering of Jellicle Cats that ended with a trip to the Heaviside Layer in a big air balloon. Lloyd Webber saw the makings of a stage musical in this.

The Love Song Of J Alfred Prufrock

In 1915, Ezra Pound, overseas editor of Poetry magazine, recommended to Harriet Monroe, the magazine’s founder, that she should publish “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”. Although the character Prufrock seems to be middle-aged, Eliot wrote most of the poem when he was only twenty-two. Its now-famous opening lines, comparing the evening sky to “a patient etherised upon a table”, were considered shocking and offensive, especially at a time when Georgian Poetry was hailed for its derivations of the nineteenth century Romantic Poets.

The poem’s structure was heavily influenced by Eliot’s extensive reading of Dante and refers to a number of literary works, including Hamlet and those of the French Symbolists. Its reception in London can be gauged from an unsigned review in The Times Literary Supplement on 21 June 1917. “The fact that these things occurred to the mind of Mr. Eliot is surely of the very smallest importance to anyone, even to himself. They certainly have no relation to poetry.”

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Its Exactly What It Sounds Like

Despite ridiculous names like Rumpleteazer and Rum Tum Tugger, the cats of Cats are surprisingly human. A rigorously sincere reading of the musical might be as a satirical panorama of personality types.

But the creator cautions against overthinking the show. The legendary Broadway producer and director Hal Prince, in an interview with The Los Angeles Times, once recalled hearing Lloyd Webber playing through the score for him: I looked at him curiously and said, Andrew, I dont understand. Is this about English politics? those cats Queen Victoria, Gladstone and Disraeli? He looked at me like Id lost my mind, and after the longest pause said, Hal, this is just about cats.

When Cats Came To Broadway Its Venue Got A Huge Makeover

‘Jellicle Songs for Jellicle Cats’ | Cats The Musical

Cats made its West End debut on May 11, 1981. Seventeen months later, a Broadway production of the musical launched what was to become an 18-year run at the Winter Garden Theatre. But before the show could open, some major adjustments had to be made to the venue. Cats came with an enormous, sprawling set which was far too large for the theaters available performing space. To make some more room, the stage had to be expanded. Consequently, several rows of orchestra seats were removed, along with the Winter Gardens proscenium arch. And that was just the beginning. For Grizabellas climactic ascent into the Heaviside Layer on a giant, levitating tire, the crew installed a hydraulic lift in the orchestra pit and carved a massive hole through the auditorium ceiling. Finally, the theaters walls were painted black to set the proper mood. After Cats closed in 2000, the original look of the Winter Garden was painstakingly restoredat a cost of $8 million.

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Cgi Glitches And Modified Release

The film’s original release contained numerous CGI errors and glitches, such as one scene in which Judi Dench’s human hand, complete with her wedding ring, appears instead of Old Deuteronomy’s cat paw. After poor reviews, Universal notified cinemas on opening day that an updated Digital Cinema Package with “some improved visual effects” would be available for download on 22 December, urging them to replace the current print as soon as possible. Studio executives and cinema owners said that the decision to release a modified version of a film already in wide release was “unheard of”.

What Happens At The End Of Cats

Since Cats is all about the Jellicle Ball, Tom Hooper’s movie ends the same time as that mythical kitty event. While plenty of cats appear to sing their songs and compete for the Jellicle Choice, there’s one cat who seems to want the victory at all costs. That’s Idris Elba’s villainous Macavity, who somehow has magical abilities the other cats do not. Macavity spends most of the movie lurking around, and kidnapping the starring cast after each actor finishes their big number.

Eventually the kidnapped cats manage to escape in the Cats movie’s third act, through some magic by Laurie Davidson’s Mr. Mistoffelees, who also has magic. The quirky characters of Cats make it back to the Jellicle Ball just in time. Judi Dench’s Old Deuteronomy decides that Grizabella is the one who deserves a new life the most, with the ensemble cats all moved by her life story. And as such she gets the honor of ascending the Heaviside Layer. Jennifer Hudson jumps into a chandelier, and flies out of the Jellicle Ball and into the sky to her destiny, bringing an end to the main story of Cats.

Of course, Idris Elba’s Macavity can’t help making one last ditch effort to steal the spot from Grizabella in the final moments of the Cats movie. He uses his magic and nearly manages to get aboard the chandelier, but comes up short. We last see him stranded on top of a statue, and seemingly without the powers he used to teleport around for the entirety of the movie. I call that kitty karma.

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Cats: What To Know Before You See It

Love it or hate it, Andrew Lloyd Webbers musical is one of the most popular of all time. Before the new movie adaptation comes out, catch up on its four-decade history.

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By Joshua Barone

The first trailer for Cats you know which one Im talking about is far from the first time the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical has attracted a wide range of extreme responses: horror, confusion, deranged confusion and, perhaps, bright-eyed excitement.

This kind of reception has followed the show since its premiere in 1981, when it immediately became both a punch line and a watershed for musical theater. People roll their eyes at the largely plotless spectacular one of scaled-up sets, countless arm and leg warmers and cruelly infectious earworms but it was an entire generations entry into the world of musicals.

Cats reached a pop culture status that was virtually peerless until Hamilton. It scampered past Broadway records, grossed billions of dollars worldwide and ushered in the age of big-money musicals of the 1980s, like Les Misérables and The Phantom of the Opera.

So its time to brush up on your Cats arcana. Here are 10 facts to get started.

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