MACAVITY, Skimbleshanks, Rum Tum Tugger and all the other Jellicle cats are strutting their stuff on the tiles at the New Theatre, Oxford in its spectacular Christmas show.
Andrew Lloyd Webber’s fabulous musical based on T S Eliot’s Old Possum’s Book Of Practical Cats ran and ran in London’s West End, and most people have long been familiar with its catchy melodies.
The cats are now back again in a new version by David Ian Productions in association with Michael Watt, proving that they do indeed have nine lives and were not ready to be retired.
This is a high-energy, beautifully staged and incredibly well-danced production by an extraordinarily talented and athletic cast.
The striking set is made good use of right from the start, and the superb lighting creates changes of mood and atmosphere most effectively (and be warned, there is frequent use of flashing lights in the show).
The twinkling stars that are created in the sky are beautiful, but the real stars are the dancers, who leave you spellbound with their ability and stamina.
Who would believe that anyone could sing a top C while bent double? They can, and do, and congratulations to them all.
This is a well-loved show that has been popular for decades, and appeals to audiences of all ages.
The toe-tapping energetic choruses were always rewarded by enthusiastic applause, but the one song that brought the house down (as it always has) was Grizabella’s Memory, hauntingly and beautifully sung by Sophia Ragavelas.
* CATS runs until Sunday January 5. For tickets call 0844 871 3020 or visit www.atgtickets.com/oxford
New Theatre Oxford
Tuesday, December 17