The phenomenal musical "Cats" is in Beijing for an eight-day run and fans are lapping up tickets for the fabulous fable of fantastic felines. The award-winning musical was first staged in Beijing in April, 2004. But it remains a major magnet for audiences during each of its stops in Beijing over the past few years.
The idea of having people dress up in cat costumes to perform song and dance routines would never strike anyone as pure box office gold but it was.
The two-act "Cats" showcases characters from all walks of life metaphors of people from different parts of society. Their stories were first told through the poetry of T.S. Eliot.
On Friday night, "Cats" kicked off its third tour to Beijing. A strong lineup of top-level performers from Australia and the UK are part of the current Cats touring cast.
Beijing audiences couldn't get enough of the cavorting kitties their garbage-can set and the soaring song "Memory".
An audience member said, "I first heard 'Memory' from a DVD in high school. It was so amazing, and I really wanted to see a live show. So tonight was a dream come true for me. "
An audience member said, "'Cats' is a Broadway classic. I feel lucky to watch it here in Beijing. It's proven to be a memorable experience."
In the middle of the show, costumed cats run into the aisles to dally with audiences.
"Cats" has been a worldwide sensation since first playing in London's West End in 1981. It is also the longest-running Broadway musical of all time. The musical has been performed in more than 20 languages.
Cats kicked off its 2009 world tour in May in Hong Kong. Performances on the Chinese mainland will end the tour, after which the team enters a period of rest and relaxation. So audiences will not be able to watch "Cats" in China for at least five years after this tour.