CATS, Starring Elizabeth Stanley, Ken T. Prymus and More, Opens Tonight at Pittsburgh CLO

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CATS, Starring Elizabeth Stanley, Ken T. Prymus and More, Opens Tonight at Pittsburgh CLO

Jellicle cats come one, come all! Join the Jellicle Ball, today, July 18 through July 27 with Pittsburgh CLO's production of CATS! A talented company of felines will bring Andrew Lloyd Webber's mysterious masterpiece to life on the Benedum Center stage.

Featuring your favorite Jellicle Cats on the night of their annual gathering, this song and dance masterpiece is the purrfect opportunity for the entire family to create a memory that will live forever! Winner of seven Tony Awards® including Best Musical, CATS features 20 of Andrew Lloyd Webber's timeless melodies including "Mr. Mistoffelees" and the multi-million selling hit "Memory." It holds as one of the longest running musicals in Broadway history!

ABOUT THE CAST

Elizabeth Stanley (Grizabella) last appeared at Pittsburgh CLO as Lucy in Jekyll and Hyde. Broadway original roles: Million Dollar Quartet (Dyanne), Cry-Baby (Allison), and Company (April - 2007 Tony Award®). First National Tour: Xanadu (Kira). NY: Merrily We Roll Along (Gussie) at New York City Center, Encores! Off- Broadway: Hello, Again (The Nurse - Drama League Nomination). TV: "The Black Box," "Made in Jersey," "Fringe," "The Chappelle Show," and "PBS Great Performances." Regional: Barrington Stage Company, Goodspeed, Sacramento Music Circus, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Rep. of St. Louis, O'Neill, La Jolla Playhouse, Pioneer Theatre Company, Cincinnati Playhouse.

Ken T. Prymus (Old Deuteronomy) started at the age of 16 with the Academy Award-winning documentary "The Young Americans." He has appeared in many films, including "In Cold Blood," "The Model Shop" and "M*A*S*H." Broadway credits include The Wiz (The Lion), Ain't Misbehavin' and 71/2 years of CATS as Old Deuteronomy. He has performed in London and throughout Great Britain performing The Greatness of Ray Charles, in Vermont at Northern Stage as the Lion in The Wizard of Oz and just completed working at Chicago's Goodman theatre in Mary.

Michael Brian Dunn (Gus/Growltiger) last appeared in Pittsburgh CLO's productions of CATS and The Full Monty. Broadway: The Life, CATS, Guys and Dolls, Big River, Baby, Sweeney Todd. National/International Tours: Amadeus, HMS Pinafore, If This Hat Could Talk, Stratford Festival Canada: HMS Pinafore, (Ralph Rackstraw) Nina and the Twelve Months, Tokyo, (performed in Japanese) Off Broadway: Perfect Crime, Ensemble Studio Theater, Secrets Every Smart Traveler Should Know, Love In Two Countries, Lenny and The Heartbreakers & Death Of Von Richthofen both at New York Shakespeare Festival, Gifts of the Magi, Kenedy's Children. Regional Theaters: All over the country. Television: "Law and Order CI, Trial by Jury, S.V.U." Film: "Julie & Julia" (Ivan Cousins) starring Meryl Streep.

Kevin Loreque (Rum Tum Tugger) recently filmed co-starring roles on "Boardwalk Empire," "Elementary" and "Person of Interest." He played Tugger in the Broadway tour of CATS, and worked off-Broadway in The Poisoned at NYTW and In the Theatre at The York. International tour: I Am My Own Wife (Africa, UK, US). He's an Ovation Award and Kevin Kline Award nominee and a Drama-Logue Award winter.

Daniel J. Self (Munkustrap) makes his Pittsburgh CLO debut. Previously appearing in the 30th Anniversary North American Tour of CATS and the 1st National Tour of Catch Me If You Can, Daniel received his training at the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts on the Central Coast of California. Favorite roles include Gabe in Next to Normal and Andy Lee in 42nd Street.

Andrew Wilson (Mr. Mistofelees) hails from Grove City, PA, where he studied gymnastics and dance at Butler Gymnastics Club & Dotty McGill's School of Dance. National tours: Cathy Rigby is Peter Pan (MSG), CATS (25th Anniversary), Seven Brides. He originated the role of the Magic Carpet in Aladdin: A Musical Spectacular on the recently opened Disney Fantasy cruise ship. Favorite credits: Miss Saigon (Dragon Acrobat/Dance Captain), Cav/Pag (Featured Gymnast, NYC Opera), Wizard of Oz (Sac. Music Circus) and Toy Story: The Musical original cast (Dance Captain).

Sara Blodgett (Victoria) has appeared in Pittsburgh CLO productions of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (Alice), Phantom (Belladova) and 42nd Street. International tour: West Side Story. National tour: The Music Man. Professional ballet: Ballet West and Ballet West II, Connecticut Ballet (soloist). She holds a B.S. in Business and Marketing, University of San Francisco.

Jesse Carrey (Skimbleshanks) returns for his second season with Pittsburgh CLO. He graduated from Carnegie Mellon in Musical Theater in 2013.

Ashley Chasteen (Bombalurina) credits include Catch Me if You Can First National Tour, CATS National Tour, Castle Walk, and A Midsummer Night's Dream.

Lucas Fedele (Coricopat) returns to his hometown of Pittsburgh. Past Pittsburgh CLO credits include Singin' in the Rain, Legally Blonde the Musical, Footloose, Phantom, 42nd Street, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Fiddler on the Roof. National Tours: Hello, Dolly! Starring Sally Sruthers, Irving Berlin's White Christmas.

Jeff Kuhr (Plato/Macavity) returns to Pittsburgh after graduating from Point Park University with a B.A. in Dance. Credits: Sacramento Music Circus, Cape Playhouse, Maltz Jupiter, Riverside Theater, Pioneer Theater, North Shore Music Theater, NCL, HAL.

Mara Newbery (Rumpleteazer) returns to Pittsburgh CLO after appearing in 42nd Street as Anytime Annie. Credits include A Christmas Story, the Musical (Broadway), On Your Toes (Encores!), and Shrek the Musical (1st Nat'l Tour). BFA University of Michigan.

Will Porter (Mongojerrie) will make his Pittsburgh CLO debut. Previous credits include CATS (National Tour), A Chorus Line, Cabaret and Bye Bye Birdie.

Amanda Pulcini (Jennyanydots) last appeared this summer in Pittsburgh CLO's productions of Singin' in the Rain and Legally Blonde The Musical. Credits- NY: Lend Me A Tenor (Maggie), Fiddler on the Roof (u/s Tzietel), Nine starring Robert Cuccioli (Swing), Legally Blonde (Chutney). Regional: Annie Get Your Gun (Annie), Cats (Jennyanydots, BroadwayWorld.com nomination for Best Supporting Actress)

Ethan Saviet (Tumblebrutus) is a rising senior musical theatre major at Syracuse University. Most recent regional credits include: Mary Poppins (Neleus), Legally Blonde, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.

Jenna Nicole Schoen (Demeter) makes her Pittsburgh CLO debut. Regional: Theory of Relativity (Goodspeed), La Cage Aux Folles, CATS (Theatre by the Sea). NYC Premiere of Le Cabaret Grimm (NYMF). BFA, The Boston Conservatory.

Paige Silvester (Silabub) recently made her Pittsburgh CLO debut in Evita as an ensemble member in the First National Tour. Other credits include The Sound of Music, Oliver! and A Little Night Music at Sacramento Music Circus, Chicago at MUNY and CATS at North Carolina Theatre.

Lily Emilia Smith (Jellylorum) is a native of Mount Lebanon, PA, and a recent graduate of Syracuse University drama.

Kathryn Terza (Tantomile) will perform in her 15th Pittsburgh CLO production. Most recent: NY City Center Encores! production of Most Happy Fella. Broadway tour of West Side Story as Fernanda, understudying Maria (also in Canada, Japan, Paris). Favorite regional credits: Lysistrata Jones (Cleonice), Cats (Demeter), Grease (ChaCha), Hello, Dolly! (us Minnie Fay) at Goodspeed and Meadow Brook Theater.

Tory Trowbridge (Cassandra) made her Pittsburgh CLO debut earlier this season in Singin' in the Rain, Legally Blonde the Musical and Footloose. Favorite credits include: National Tour: CATS. Other: Funny Girl (Bubbles) A Chorus Line (Val), Hairspray (Luanne), Legally Blonde (Pilar), West Side Story (Maria), Street Scene (Mae).

CATS is complete with a talented vocal ensemble, including Tsilala Graham-Haynes, Stephanie Maloney, Connor McRory, Zach Miller and Liz Schmitz.

ABOUT THE CREATIVE TEAM

Richard Stafford (Director/Choreographer) has multiple Pittsburgh CLO credits, including Oliver!, Joseph...Dreamcoat, CATS, On the Town, Phantom and Camelot. Broadway: choreographer for In My Life (Music Box Theatre), dance supervisor for CATS (Winter Garden Theatre). International: The Full Monty, Joseph ... Dreamcoat (Mexico City), CATS (Copenhagen, Sao Paulo, Rio). National Tours: CATS, My Fair Lady, Joseph ... Dreamcoat (starring Debbie Gibson and Patrick Cassidy). Recent Regional: classics such as The King and I, Crazy for You and Annie Get Your Gun as well as musicals such as Miss Saigon, Curtains, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels at premier theatres around the country. Mr. Stafford won the Barrymore Award for outstanding choreography for La Cage aux Folles at the Walnut Street Theatre.

Tom Helm (Music Director) returns for his 19th season with Pittsburgh CLO. His theater credits include the Broadway productions of Souvenir, Les Mise?rables, Me and My Girl, Cats and Brigadoon. He has also contributed his talents to television programs such as "Crazy For You" and the "Today Show." Mr. Helm has conducted at Radio City Music Hall, Paper Mill Playhouse and many other regional and national theaters.

Andrew David Ostrowski (Lighting Designer) recently completed work on Pittsburgh CLO's Singin' in the Rain, Legally Blonde the Musical, Footloose and Ring of Fire at the CLO Cabaret. He has designed for every local company in Pittsburgh. National credits include: The Asolo, Virginia Stage Company, North Shore Music Theatre, Merrimack Reparatory Company, The Arden Theatre Company, Spoleto Festival USA, Dallas Summer Musicals, Theater of the Stars, Madison Opera, as well as others. International credits include productions in Ireland, Scotland, Sweden, France, and touring all of Western Europe.

HISTORY OF THE SHOW

CATS first premiered in 1980 as a collection of songs, with lyrics based off of T.S. Eliot's Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats and music arranged by Andrew Lloyd Webber. When Webber debuted the songs at the Sydmonton Festival in London, Eliot's widow Valerie Fletcher approached the composer with a collection of her late husband's unpublished work. It was then that the idea to transform the series of songs into a full-scale musical was born.

Later that same year, Webber collaborated with director Trevor Nunn to create a story from the famous book for poems that would translate to the stage. Three of the unpublished poems that were given to Webber by Fletcher were incorporated into the show in their entirety, including "Grizabella the Glamour Cat."

Since its debut on the West End in 1981, CATS has become an international phenomenon and holds the current record as the second-longest running Broadway musical of all time, surpassed only by Webber's own The Phantom of the Opera. The show has been translated into 10 different languages and performed in 26 countries. It has won numerous awards, including the 1981 Laurence Olivier award for Musical of the Year, the Evening Standard award for Best Musical, and seven 1983 Tony® awards, including Best Musical.

ABOUT THE ORIGINAL COMPOSER

Andrew Lloyd Webber (Music) is the composer of The Likes of Us, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar, By Jeeves, Evita, Variations and Tell Me on a Sunday later combined as Song & Dance, CATS, Starlight Express, The Phantom of the Opera, Aspects of Love, Sunset Boulevard,

Whistle Down the Wind, The Beautiful Game, The Woman in White and Love Never Dies. He composed the film scores of "Gumshoe" and "The Odessa File" and a setting of the Latin Requiem mass. Recent producer credits include A.R. Rahman's Bombay Dreams, The Sound of Music, The Wizard of Oz and films of "The Phantom of the Opera" and the acclaimed Australian production of "Love Never Dies." He pioneered television casting for musical theatre with the Emmy Award-winning "How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria?" His awards include seven Tonys®, three Grammys, seven Oliviers, a Golden Globe, an Oscar, the Praemium Imperiale, the Richard Rodgers and the Kennedy Center Honor.

Tickets are available online at pittsburghCLO.org, by calling 412-456-6666 or at the Box Office at Theater Square. Groups of 10 or more enjoy exclusive discounts and specialty packages. Call our Group Sales Hotline at 412-325-1582 for more information.

Since 1946, the Pittsburgh CLO has been the driving force behind live musical theater in Pittsburgh and the entire Southwestern Pennsylvania region. Under the direction of Van Kaplan since 1997, this not-for-profit arts organization appreciates the support of nearly 200,000 patrons each year and produces a subscription series, educational programs, national tours and develops and invests in new works, including 19 Broadway shows (25 Tony Awards®) featuring the current productions of Cinderella, Kinky Boots and Matilda. Its dedication to the musical theater art form extends to include such programs as the CLO Academy, the CLO Mini Stars, the Gene Kelly Awards, the Richard Rodgers Award the National High School Musical Theater Awards, the Construction Center for the Arts and the CLO Cabaret.

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