Cats

Date 17th February 2016
Society Zenith Youth Theatre Company
Venue Kingswood Theatre, Bath
Type of Production Musical
Director Scott Rogers
Musical Director Roy Page
Choreographer Julie Dallimore & Delia Lee

Report

Author: Sylvia Coates

A show about cats hanging out in a junkyard doesn’t appeal to everyone, but Zenith Youth Theatre performed with such energy and enthusiasm that other companies may find it hard to beat. In movement and song this young cast created characters and situations with aplomb, stealthily and sinuously populating the corrugated-iron set, against the backdrop of a brilliant full moon pulsing with light. With stand-out performances from Ed Corbishley (Munkustrap), the acrobatic Mungo Jerry and Rumpleteazer (Sam Feierabend and Beth Mitchell), and the amazing Marcus May (Mr Mistoffolees), this was a show which entertained from the outset to the end.

The ensemble were just that, they moved and sang as a company should, creating atmosphere and drama not just to support the principal characters, but as an entity of its own. Emily Howley-Wells, as Jennyandots, was strong throughout all scenes, and Liam Shaw was notable as a highly-focused ensemble character – don’t ever believe that being in the chorus means you are not seen. Molly Dallimore, Caitlin Mazza and Sophia Millard worked their socks off as Jellylorum, Bombalurina and Demeter. Molly Griffin played a delightfully balletic and beautifully-observed White Cat; Rum Tum Tugger (George Miles) thoroughly enjoyed playing the rock star; Harry Dallimore danced heroically as the Rumpus Cat; and Charles Hollingworth was a snazzy Bustopher Jones.  Playing a lonely, downhearted outcast can never be easy, but Grizabella’s (Georgie McSherry) duet with Jemima (Ana Fox) was spine-tingling. There was animal energy in the Macavity fight sequence (Oli Swales, Ed Corbishley, Maisie Humphries), and interesting ensemble work in the Skimbleshanks railway scene. Gus (Marcus Kendall) sang with perfect diction.

It is impossible to mention you all, but there were no passengers in this production, and with an enthusiastic company combined with a live orchestra, interesting choreography, practical set and creative lighting, this show was certain to do well under the direction of Scott Rogers, with musical direction by Roy Page. Congratulations to everyone at Zenith, on a most enjoyable and memorable production.