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Your first time 
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Post Your first time
What was your first time seeing Cats live on stage like? How old were you? What do you remember? Did you like it?

My Story

It was my 7th birthday. My great-aunt already had bought me the video version of "Cats" and I really liked that so my dad thought that I would probably like the musical. When I first saw it, I was so excited. It was probably my 2nd or 3rd show that I had ever been to. The whole show was amazing. I just loved it. Since that day, I have seen Cats 6 times. I have the London and Broadway CD's. I listen to it constantly. Although it may not be the best show ever written it will always hold a special place in my heart, and it is one of the things that helpled me when my great-aunt died. Whenever I see Cats, the movie or the show, whenever I listen to memory, I always think of my great-aunt and the greatest gift that she ever gave to me. The gift of theatre. If she hadn't got me the movie of "Cats", I would've never have been interested in theatre. You can criticize the show as much as you want, I don't care. It's a special show to me and it will always be my favorite.

What's your story?


Thu Jan 31, 2008 9:19 pm
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Tony Winner
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My story is one of many failures.

After being introduced to Cats through the video, I fell in love. Ever since, I'd been dying to see the show live. Only, the one chance I had to see it professionally was way back when I was fourteen... And I missed it. Because my parents wouldn't pay, and by the time I'd actually amassed enough money on my own (without a job - I was too young to be legally employed) all of the shows in my area were sold out. I could not afford to travel to another city to see it, nor could I have gone on my own anyway.

I am now twenty-one. I have attempted to see professional tours overseas twice. The first mission (to the US, when I was sixteen) failed thanks to a family crisis. My father literally smashed his big toe to pieces and couldn't work for almost the entire year.* I'm sure you can guess why I didn't wind up going.
The second mission, when I was nineteen, failed because I became entangled with the wrong guy, became horrible depressed, and lost my source of income. Now chronicly unemployed, my savings went down the drain fast. I did not wind up seeing Cats.

Last year, I discovered that a regional theatre company was putting on a production of Cats an hour's drive away. Still unemployed, and now completely devoid of savings, I wound up crying my eyes out because I couldn't go. (Yes, I admit it, I am horribly obsessed.) I was then surprised when my best friend bought tickets for us to go.
As it turned out the performance was mediocre at best, but I loved it anyway because most of the costumes were very pretty and there were a couple of really good singers in the ensemble.

This year, I again planned on going overseas to see a professional tour. That died a horrible death too. Because, while I am now employed, I am not earning enough to actually get to where I want to go when I would need to be there. And the later I leave it, the more it would cost me for travel expenses and accomodation. In other words - I can save and save, but it would never be enough.

A lot of people on this forum seem to take it for granted that they get to see CATS performed live on a relatively regular basis, and by professionals, not amateurs. It actually makes me feel sad to read about everyone's wonderful experiences, because at times it seems as if I will never actually get to experience those same things. I may yet triumph, who knows... But rest assured it wont be for an absurdly long time.

*I know this sounds ridiculous, but if you've ever broken any bones you'll know how painful it would have been. And by smashed, I mean smashed. As in, bones broken into tiny little pieces. You need your big toes for balance while walking, it's very hard to get along without them. Three attempts at corrective surgery. A chronic infection. Amputation. Not ridiculous.

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Fri Feb 01, 2008 2:53 am
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Tony Winner
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I was very young, the best bit was getting Old Deut to sign my cast as I had broken my arm a few days before, he drew paw prints all over it in the interval.

The most memorable bit was the effect the red lights had at the start of Macavity..... I was sat right next to one and it was so bright but dim at the same time (you all know the bit I mean) and also the guitar part toward the end of the Jellicle ball......wow!
When I saw it the first time in London I remember the whir of the revolve, the smell of the smoke and picking bits of feathers and fluff off the scenery (I sat in the front row by the central aisle) and still to this day I have my 'fluff tin' with a gem from Victoria's collar,a hairpin from cassandras wig, lots of fluff from griddlebone and gawd knows what else!)

Seen it countless times since all over the world. *Geek* lol!

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Fri Feb 01, 2008 10:17 am
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Tony Winner
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I've only seen it live once, in Madrid. That was three or four years ago? It all started in a forum of musicals in the internet. I met the boy that was going to become an important part of which is now my past. We kept talking to eachother until one good sunday morning he travelled to my hometown, Barcelona, with his brother, just to meet me. So then I decided to travel to Madrid and I got two tickets to see Cats with him. That's how in fact started our relationship and the best I've had so far.

The show was nice and fun but, as I've said in an other post somewhere recently, I can't seem to remember anything in detail, I just have vage images in my mind. And I think it's probably because I'm traying to forget him (thing that I'm quite proud of because I think I'm finally succeeding on forgetting him)

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Fri Feb 01, 2008 1:30 pm
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Tony Winner
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This is what I wrote in response to a similar question posted a while ago:

Cassandra wrote:
I fell in love with the show after I first saw it live back in 1995 (I was 15 years old at the time). The US/Canada 4th National Tour was in town, and my mom and I decided on a whim to buy last-minute tickets. We ended up in one of the front rows with a large aisle in front of us. I remember being mesmerized from the start, especially when the actors came out into the audience. During Misto's number, Sillabub came over to the little girl sitting next to me, took off her shoe, and played around with it in the aisle. It was so cute!

My mom and I loved the show so much, we went back for a second viewing before the show left town. This time we were further back, but still close to the aisle. During Pekes and Pollicles, Tugger (J. Robert Spencer) was meandering his way through the audience with his bagpipes. I watched him intently as he came down our aisle. When he got to my row, he stopped, reached over the two people sitting next to me to shake my hand, winked, and said, "Hey! How ya doin'?" *swoon* I had such a crush on J. Robert Spencer for the longest time. He's still one of my absolute favorite Tuggers to date.


Fri Feb 01, 2008 4:48 pm
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Tony Winner
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I saw it for the first time back in May 1987 at the tender age of 12. I didn't realise it at the time, but I saw the inaugural Tour IV cast. I don't remember much of that performance as I had gotten tix two weeks before the show, so the only seats that remained were crappy ones. I think my mother wound up sitting behind a post. :? And I got the Dancing Flea Circus. :/ What I could see I liked, so I saw it again next time it came through town.

I haven't missed a tour yet. The final Tour IV cast never came through here, and since this may be the final Tour V cast, I've got tickets for Tucson in May. It's only about an hour and a half drive so it's not far, and I've friends down there so I might stay down there for a couple of days. Dunno yet.

I learned a valuable lesson from my first time, though. Buy tickets early to get decent seats. So far no more dancing fleas, thank God--but I'm also prepared to pay the highest price bracket to ensure decent seats, so...but to me it's worth it.

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Fri Feb 01, 2008 5:49 pm
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I must say that I am quite a Cats newbie :oops: I first saw the video in 2004 after "strange black posters with two eyes" appeared in Prague metro and my friend wanted me to *cough, cough* download it :) Although I fallen in love with this musical, I was a bit afraid of visiting Czech production as it was totally different from the original. So I saw it first time live in February 2005. I remember that after the first visit I was impressed by the energy that the cast put into the show, but I was also confused about who was who (different names/make-up).
I must admit that I started to recognize each character after third of fourth visit :) Anyway I liked this Czech production very much and visited it many times before it went bancrupt...

After this experience with CZ Cats I started to travel across Europe to see various productions - just to compare them. And I must say that although non-original productions are interesting, I would prefer A+ productions for the future (my non-replicas were Czech, Polish and Swedish, while the original productions were from Germany, UK and Netherlands).

I totally agree with darkmage that the key to success is to buy the tickets in advance (at least 3 months) without concerning the final price - according to the rule "best or nothing". (But the fact is that seven visits to Dutch tour became quite expensive hobby :roll:) BTW - how expensive are the tickets in US? Here it was approx. 55-100 € for the best seat on Saturday evening (it is cca 82-150 $).

PS - strange thing - my account was suspended :roll: Maybe I am too much reading and too little posting :oops:

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Sat Feb 02, 2008 7:50 am
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Tony Winner
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In answer to your query:

I got tix for me and a friend for May. The tickets themselves were only about $50 each, but by the time Ticketmaster added in their famous 'we know we have you over a barrel' fees the total bill was $143. :evil: To add insult to injury the show was originally supposed to be in April, it got pushed back to May. But the tickets will still be honoured as it was the venue's fault and they had a scheduling conflict.

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Sat Feb 02, 2008 8:46 am
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Thanks for the info, darkmage! The prices are quite nice, but it is really weird to raise it 3-times 8O 8O

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Sun Feb 03, 2008 7:07 am
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Tony Winner
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They didn't raise it three times. They basically tacked an extra ticket on. $50 x2 tickets = $100. Then processing and shipping fees added another $43. :?

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Sun Feb 03, 2008 7:36 am
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Wow, that sucks Darkmage. (I normally do will call, buying directly from the theater.)

I've seen CATS three times. The first was when I was about 7. I BARELY remember it, but I do remember not wanting to leave the theatre.

Then I saw it two years ago, with my neechan. Then I saw it last year, scheduling a trip to take my entire girl scout troop to see it. (That was hard. :| )

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Mon Feb 04, 2008 1:00 am
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Tony Winner
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I don't trust WillCall. I've seen it be screwed up way too many times. I prefer to have the tickets in my grubby little hands. It also works better for me because then I see the tickets every day on my shelf and I don't forget about the show.

I'll get them from the venue's box office too--when I can. Thing is a lot of the local venues are contracted with Ticketmaster so you get their over barrel fees whether you like it or not. :?

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Mon Feb 04, 2008 1:39 am
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