Captivating choreography and charming characterisation ensures memories of the fabulous felines in Cats stay with audiences long after the applause subsides.
Prowling through the auditorium at Milton Keynes Theatre all this week, the moggies in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s record-breaking musical offer us an intriguing insight into the inner world of cats. Known as the Jellicle Cats, the members of this kitty clan cavort around a junkyard playground under the moonlight. They stealthily slink past their human visitors before darting over the darkened landscape of rubbish. Wary and suspicious — but clearly curious too — the Jellicles proudly gather together to open our eyes to their customs.
The cats reveal that tonight is the night of the Jellicle Ball. This one special night of the year is when the tribe reunites to celebrate who they are. Mischievous or mysterious. Domesticated or defiant. Sensual or magical. Cheeky cat burglars; fat cats; ginger cats; tabby cats; tom cats; coquettish kittens. Every cat counts.
Granted a front row seat at the Jellicle Ball, we are introduced to each of the pussycats in turn.
Feline focused smash hit musical Cats returns to Milton Keynes Theatre from Monday.
Back on tour after sell-out success at the London Palladium, the record-breaking show is the outstanding work of composer Andrew Lloyd Webber, director Trevor Nunn, designer John Napier and director-choreographer Dame Gillian Lynne.
These talented creatives blew theatregoers away with their purr-fect combination of innovative dance, beautiful music and charming verse when the production made its West End debut in 1981.
Acclaimed choreographer and theatre/television director Dame Gillian Lynne is a legendary figure in the arts, with a career spanning more than 70 years.
Her achievements include being a ballerina with Sadler’s Wells Ballet (now The Royal Ballet), performing centre stage as the London Palladium’s lead dancer and choreographing iconic musicals.
Georgina Butler made the most of an opportunity to converse with this multi award-winning dance superstar.
Gillian Lynne is a household name; a VIP in the world of dance and theatre. Her CV is packed with soloist roles as a ballerina; guest appearances as a dancer on the stage and on television; and countless productions on which she has worked her magic as an internationally sought-after director and choreographer.
Joining the Ballet Guild in 1942, aged 16, marked the beginning of Gillian’s career as a professional dancer. By chance, Ninette de Valois, the founder of Sadler’s Wells Ballet (which later became The Royal Ballet), saw Gillian dancing as Odette in Ballet Guild’s production of Swan Lake and immediately decided she wanted the talented young artist in her company. When Gillian accepted this invitation, she was the first dancer to join Sadler’s Wells Ballet who had not studied at its prestigious feeder school (now The Royal Ballet School). Possessing a gift for dancing; a desire to follow her dreams; and a tenacious work ethic, Gillian flourished as a ballerina and was later an instant success at the London Palladium and in subsequent roles in the West End.
Perhaps most famous for her ground-breaking choreography in Cats and The Phantom of the Opera (both with Andrew Lloyd Webber), Gillian has choreographed or directed over 60 productions in the West End and on Broadway. These productions have won numerous accolades and Gillian has been presented with multiple awards, including two Olivier Awards — one for Outstanding Achievement for her choreography of Cats in 1981, the other a Lifetime Achievement ‘Special’ Olivier presented to her in 2013.