Friday, July 25, 2014

Teacher Outing: CATS

With the end of the semester finally here, the Doam teachers headed to Seoul to see CATS the musical. My co-teacher SK kept telling me that she heard it was going to be the Original Broadway version, and I didn't realize that meant the musical would be in English. That discovery when the lights went down, the music started, and the first words were sung was so nice.

Having never seen, knowingly heard any of the music from, or read anything pertaining to Andrew Lloyd Webber's CATS, I have never liked CATS. I have never gotten a good vibe from it. I would see stills of the Broadway actors in costume and I would quite consciously screw my nose up. Even pop culture references, such as on Modern Familycouldn't convince me to want to see it. But I was very happy to have the experience in Korea, with Korean actors and surrounded by a Korean audience. 

The actors were amazing. The 4-1 teacher mentioned that the cast had either studied in New York and/or had performed CATS in New York. I wasn't sure which he meant, but wow. The acrobats and dancing and singing - their performance - was spot on. It always makes me want to be a dancer, seeing people dance as well and beautifully as they did. I also learned that the Blue Square, the performing art hall playing CATS, has a connection with Samsung. Explains, truly, the marvelous lighting schemes for every show I've seen there. 

Near the end of the first act, I was still enjoying the energy of the show but I was getting antsy. Come on, where is the song - the Andrew Lloyd Webber song, the one that projects into the heavens and makes me feel like I can fly. Finally, the old cat sings "Memory." At the start of the second act, she even sings the Korean version which got the loudest applause and cheers from the crowd.

CATS isn't my favorite Andrew Lloyd Webber musical -- I was thinking about the costumes and decided that the cats' tails needed be doing something. In real life, cats' tails are constantly swishing and curling and balancing. That and all the tight-fitting cat costumes on some pretty muscular fellows and let's face it, women, kept taking me out of story.

Overall, it was a really fun night out; I like spending time with my co-workers outside of school. And as we were walking back to the bus, I heard several people humming "Memory." I love musical nights.  

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