The story behind the Musical Cats
Still of the musical Cats
Stage director Jordan Gove (the second from the right) introducing the stage setting. (Photo provided by Chongqing Performance Co., Ltd.)
CHONGQING (CQNEWS) -- The original musical Cats from London has been a hit since it was performed in Chongqing on August 17. What's the real scene of Cats behind the curtain when the audience are enchanted by the wonderful performance of the actors on the stage? Recently, the reporter went offstage with the permission of performance party.
It's so different from what it looks like in the performance! Entering the hall, the first thing you see is a huge "dump" where the Jericho cats host balls. The whole stage setting is brought from London by plane. In order to give the audience a better visual experience, the stage of "Cats" is designed to be tilted. Although the empathy engagement is enhanced, it greatly increases the difficulty of performers. For the unique behavior of cat, actors need to crawl a lot, and it is so hard to perfectly show the performance to audiences on the inclined stage in addition to the complex dance movements.
Cast members showed the process of changing clothes on the back stage. Before performance, the actors need to spend about one and a half hours on makeup. When an actor is required to play two or more roles at the same time, he/she will have less time to change clothes. In each performance in Chongqing, a total of 22 actors played 26 cats with various disposition. Staff said that to avoid accidents, each role should be familiarized by 3 actors in case of temporary replacement.
Stage director of "Cats" Jordan Gove said that Chongqing International Circus City is the best stage in their tour of China. "The original intention of the stage design is to increase the participation and interaction of audience, and the circular stage of Chongqing International Circus City can make the audience enjoy the performance with a visual angle of 180 degree, which is the best." (Translated by Jiang Yuling, Fathom Language Limited)