Theatre Review: Cats (Tour) - New Wimbledon Theatre ✭✭✭✭✭

New Wimbledon Theatre

7th May 2014: It's not often I can say I'm going to a musical that I've never seen before, but tonight was one of those moments. No, I've never seen Cats performed before, I've seen most other Lloyd-Webber musicals, so this was quite a rarity for me. You could feel the buzz in the foyer from the audience going to their seats, and when inside, you are welcomed by the junkyard set sprawling all over the huge Wimbledon stage, detritus strewn about with steps leading into the auditorium.

If you've not seen Cats before, then what is it about? I hear you asking... Well, it tells the story of a tribe of cats called the Jellicles and the night they make what is known as "the Jellicle choice" and decide which cat will ascend to the Heaviside Layer and come back to a new life.

As soon as the show started, I knew I was in for a good evening because the first thing that hits you is the quality of the sound and the band playing off stage under the baton of Anthony Gabriele... Crystal clear, deep mellow bass and a very good volume indeed. The mix was just right, you can clearly hear all vocals on stage, sign of a stunning job well done from all involved.

The Cats tonight are quite simply a fantastic bunch of performers - all singing, dancing, acrobatics, tap-dancing, full of energy... I could go on, this is one ensemble I was proud to be watching.

Vocals are crisp from all, emotions running high, especially from Joanna Ampil's Grizabella who steals the show with a tremendous performance of Memory. Another standout is Joseph Poulton's Mistoffelees, fantastic dancing and showmanship all round. Mungojerrie and Rumpleteazer - Benjamin Yates and Dawn Williams - also provide a dazzling routine with cartwheels and various other moves of which I have no idea what the names are.

So all in all, this is a well polished show, and its great to watch whatever age you are - in tonights audience there were ages ranging from 5 to 85 - it just goes to show that Cats' popularity still lives strong today... Purrfect!

Five stars ✭✭✭✭✭

Cats is at New Wimbledon Theatre until 17th May

UK Tour Dates

Venue Cymru, Llandudno
Tuesday 3rd – Saturday 14th June 2014

Marlowe Theatre, Canterbury
Monday 16th – Saturday 28th June 2014

Theatre Royal, Newcastle
Tuesday 1st – Saturday 12th July 2014

Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff
Monday 28th July – Saturday 9th August 2014

Pavilion Theatre, Bournemouth
Monday 11th – Saturday 16th August 2014

Princess Theatre, Torquay
Monday 18th – Saturday 30th August 2014

Birmingham Hippodrome, Birmingham
Tuesday 9th – Saturday 27th September 2014