In Waterford, the word 'cat', used as an adjective, is local slang-a derogatory term casting aspersions on the merits of an event . So with that unpromising subliminal association, combined with a more overt connection with that of a certain well known musical theatre show in my mind, I went along to the Central Hall to see 'Cat', a theatrical presentation offered as part of Imagine Festival. I am happy to declare that the deft one hander directed by Jamie Beamish was anything but 'cat ' . Au contraire. Cat was was an excellent, well paced and highly entertaining yarn. From the opening I was drawn in to empathize with the likeable theatrical animal , Dave, a wanabe Jellicle cat by the engaging performance of Richard Hardwick, who seemed at first glance to have arrived direct from the West End . But there is a sting in this tale... By all accounts, Cat went went down a treat at the Edinburgh Fringe . Last chance to catch it in Waterford tonight but expect to see it popping up at a festival near you. Here is the blurb-
'CAT is the story of “Dave the Cat” and how he was sacked from the original production of that famous musical “Cats” on opening night, and has never quite recovered. The show lets us into a world of backstage drama, romance and intrigue, and features songs supposedly “cut” from the original musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber (but don’t tell Andrew). Seating limited so book early. Not suitable for under 16′s.'
Later in the evening further down the Quay , the mood was thoughtful as English troubadour, Chris Wood had his audience in the Dooley's Hotel enthralled. with his distinctive mellifluous low tones. In his poetic lyrics and rueful asides he offered sharp observations on life in his well crafted grainy songs.