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CATS in Manila to Feature Tony Winner Lea Salonga as 'Grizabella', Begins Run 7/24/2010

CITIGROUP INC. has announced in the Philippine Daily Inquirer (11/3/09) that CATS, the second longest-running musical in Broadway history, will have a limited run at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) beginning July 24, 2010.  This production will feature Tony winner Lea Salonga as Grizabella, and an international cast that will primarily come from Australia, and the United Kingdom. 

CATS is one of Broadway’s British imports, which was truly phenomenal – the production at the Winter Garden Theatre ran for 18 years. 

The show, based on the OLD POSSUM’S BOOK OF PRACTICAL CATS by T.S. Eliot has music by musical theatre master Andrew Lloyd Webber (The Phantom of the Opera, Sunset Boulevard).  Its musical numbers include the hit song MEMORY. 

BroadwayWorld.com Philippines had a quick interview with Lea while enroute to Toronto, Canada for her U.S. and Canada 2009 concert tour.  “The tour has been going along very nicely! We’ve had very receptive and enthusiastic audiences at every stop, and it makes me happy we’ve been greeted so wonderfully. I think CATS in Manila is also a touring production.  But I’ll only be part of it in Manila,” she said.

CATS first opened in London’s West End in 1981 with Elaine Paige (Grizabella), and then on Broadway after a year with Betty Buckley (Grizabella), directed by Trevor Nunn (Les Miserables, Starlight Express), and choreographed by Gilliane Lynne (The Phantom of the Opera, Aspects of Love).  The musical won numerous awards including both the Laurence Olivier Award and Tony Award for Best Musical. 

Grizabella is a former Glamour Cat who has lost her clout and sparkle, and now only seeks to be accepted by the “Jellicle Cats” society, whose members are anxiously waiting to be reborn into a new life.

“I’ll be playing Grizabella (aka the non-dancer part).  As for what attracts me to her, besides the big song? Grizabella is The cat that shone in the spotlight once upon a time, and doesn’t anymore.  She’s scraggy, dirty, ugly, and relives the Glory Days in her mind.  It’ll be interesting to play someone that once shone, and no longer does,” noted Lea.

CATS, which features a larger-than-life junkyard set, colorful make-up and costumes, ‘80s choreography, and often eclectic array of music, has been toured around the world. Just like another British import LES MISERABLES, it has been translated into more than 20 languages. 

The musical was shot to video in 1998 and aired on television worldwide.

CitiGroup Inc. offers tickets exclusively to Citi clients till December 6, 2009.  Present your Citi credit or ATM card at any Ticketworld outlet, and get 10 percent discount.  For more details, contact Ticketworld at (632) 891-9999 or visit www.ticketworld.com.ph.

Catch Lea in the final leg of her U.S. and Canada concert tour: Nov. 4 in Toronto (Queen Elizabeth Theatre); Nov. 6 in Houston (Arena Theater), Nov. 7 in Austin (Paramount Theater); Nov. 10 in Honolulu (Neil Blaisdell Center), and Nov. 13 in Maui (Castle Theater at the MACC).



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