Cats Heading Back To The West End
So Cats is heading back to London. And I suppose you might expect that, as a fan of the show, and as it is so close to my heart, I would be delighted and excited to hear this news. But, I will be absolutely honest with you all, I have such mixed feelings about it all! On the one hand, it is exciting to see the show get a chance to play a run in Theatreland. But on the other hand...all this talk of making changes to it has me very worried. I know this makes me sound terribly picky and snobbish but...messing with Cats for the sake of trying to modernize it, or even just for the sake of trying to impress London, is such a risky thing to do and I can't say I agree with it at all. Cats as it is...is beautiful. It's magical, it's wonderous and it has been touring the UK and Europe for over a year now PROVING that people love it and appreciate its magic just the way it is. I never deal well with change, and when something is as close to my heart as Cats is it makes me outright nervous. The theatre these days so often seems to be deserpately seeking some mysterious popular-culture approval - I think Les Miserables being such a runaway box office success and all these musical movies which are following it has created this want from a lot of corners for the same mass-appeal, unexpected sensation thing to happen in everything. And honestly, they try so hard that a lot of the time I think they ruin it for themselves, because it SHOWS that they're tyring too hard and that just spoils it. And I can't help but be anxious that this is what Andrew Lloyd Webber seems to be thinking with Cats - though obviously I'm prepared to be proved wrong! Still, I can't help but feel it's a bit of a kick in the teeth to the current touring cast...though I'm sure they won't feel that way, I feel very defensive of them all as I am so attached to them and their take on it. It was only earlier this month that Andrew Lloyd Webber went to see these wonderful people in Llanduno and now he's announced a potentially different version of the show they performed for him will be heading to the West End and a whole new cast will have to be in it, presumeably, since the current cast are Europe-bound and still tied up on tour in the time this London cast would be being assembled. Unless, of course, there is enough of a break to rehearse with them in at the Palladium at the end of their European adventure so they would go straight through to the London show seamlessly? That would be a nice surprise, though a nightmare from my personal point of view in terms of trying to get down to London to see them!! It would just feel very, very wrong to me to have this tour be steamrollered, if this cast aren't going to continue through to London, because then they would have all their hard work shunted to one side (admitedly somewhat accidentally) by all the press attention on the West End run. So yes, I don't know how I feel about the news, honestly. Mixed emotions, generally, and I just sincerely hope it turns out for the best and that this talk of change is very much overstated and that the cast I've come to love so much stay on. And of course I also hope that any change won't be forever, regardless of how significant it may be: when a new tour eventually comes around, I would dearly like it to be the show I know and love and have loved since I was six in essence, sound and feel, even with a brand new cast making it their own every night. I suppose I will get a clearer idea when they announce the casting - and I think it will be the casting announcement which I will leave to be the decider as to whether I try to get tickets or not.
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