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'Cat' Gets The Cream Of Reviews

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MamasDoin'Fine
Broadway Legend
joined:9/28/08
Broadway Legend
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exedore
Broadway Legend
joined:4/20/05
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re: 'Cat' Gets The Cream Of Reviews#2
Posted: 12/2/09 at 8:52am
They're only discounting 25% at the moment and press night was so oversubscribed that I couldn't get in despite a good relationship with the press office. So we'll see?
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MamasDoin'Fine
Broadway Legend
joined:9/28/08
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MamasDoin'Fine
Broadway Legend
joined:9/28/08
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re: 'Cat' Gets The Cream Of Reviews#3
Posted: 12/2/09 at 9:51am
Films and music can easily cross borders, and so must theatre. And the mostly American team of producers behind Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, who found that the New York Times had declared their revival 'flabby' and commented that the production 'acquires a haze of sentimentality that makes it soft where it should be sharp', must be welcoming the British reviews today, too, that have so far been a clean sweep of four stars, from The Times, The Guardian, The Independent, Daily Telegraph, the Evening Standard and Whatsonstage.com.
Such unanimity is rare; but more than that, it also underlines the difference in taste between American and British critics, too. Or it could simply be that the production seen last night is much improved since it was first seen in New York, too.

But will the reviews translate into box office now?
On the one hand, Broadway embraced the production regardless of the reviews. As Lucy Powell reported in The Times recently, producer Stephen C Byrd told her that when he approached James Earl Jones to do the play originally, Jones had replied, 'I always wanted to play that cracker'; and Byrd says; 'I thought, now that's something people will come out to see. And once it's an event people come, no matter what the critics say.'

It made the show critic proof. And more importantly, it also found new audiences - arguably amongst a public who wouldn't read reviews anyway, let alone go to the theatre regularly. According to The Times, Byrd estimates that it originally played to 80 per cent African-American audiences, 'some of whom had never been to the theatre before', he says, 'who made a lot of noise. I remember people coming in late, asking if we could start over, talking to the stage. All of which only increased the excitement around Cat as being a defining occasion.'

In London, it has now been blessed by reviews; but what will make it a defining occasion here? Certainly last night it stood out from the crowd for one reason above all: the decision to hold a 6.30pm curtain instead of the regular 7pm. That was partly a matter of logistics - it's a 2 hour 45 minute play, and the producers wanted to give critics extra time to be able to file the reviews. But amazingly, it managed to start at 6.37pm. Which is, of course, on time when it comes to a Broadway show: no show starts on Broadway till roughly 7 minutes after the advertised time, even on a normal performance.
Bravo to that.

Updated On: 12/2/09 at 09:51 AM
exedore
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joined:4/20/05
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re: 'Cat' Gets The Cream Of Reviews#4
Posted: 12/2/09 at 9:57am
Mama, if you're going to copy liberally from Shenton's blog you could at least provide a link back to the source.
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MamasDoin'Fine
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joined:9/28/08
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re: 'Cat' Gets The Cream Of Reviews#5
Posted: 12/2/09 at 10:19am
lol, if I don't provide a link its because it wont work for me.
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MamasDoin'Fine
Broadway Legend
joined:9/28/08
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re: 'Cat' Gets The Cream Of Reviews#6
Posted: 12/2/09 at 10:20am
lol, if I don't provide a link its because it wont work for me.
Dantes
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joined:10/11/09
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re: 'Cat' Gets The Cream Of Reviews#7
Posted: 12/2/09 at 10:23am
Im rooting for this one, its a great play and i would love to see this production fly here. It also keeps Debbie Allen away from the new Carrie the Musical if shes tied up with this lol
former sadm2 (wink)