Broadway's Jacob Brent and Ken Page are at the forefront of Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Cats," playing May 16-June 2 in Bellport. "Cats," the second longest-running show in Broadway history, is the first show in The Gateway's 63rd Season.
Ken Page, who originated the role of Old Deuteronomy on Broadway, will revisit the patriarchal character for The Gateway. Mr. Page received the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Actor in a Musical for his portrayal of Fats Waller in the original Broadway production of "Ain't Misbehavin.'" Other Broadway credits include the original productions of "The Wiz," and "It Ain't Nothin' But the Blues." Page's film roles include club owner Max Washington in "Dreamgirls" and the voice of Oogie Boogie in Tim Burton's "The Nightmare Before Christmas."
Jacob Brent will direct and choreograph Gateway's production. As the magical Mister Mistoffelees, Brent is one of the only actors to have appeared in the Broadway, the West End and the 1998 video productions of the legendary musical playing the magical cat. As director and choreographer, his work has been seen regionally, including "Avenue Q" and "A Funny Thing…" at Vermont's Weston Playhouse.
With music by Webber and lyrics by T.S. Elliot and Trevor Nunn, "Cats"-winner of eight Tony Awards-transports audiences into the magical realm of the Jellicle Cats. Adapted from Elliot's poetry, "Cats" is set on the evening of the Jellicle Ball, a special night where the felines display their talents and good deeds to achieve rebirth into a better life. The show features such well known hits as "Old Deuteronomy," "The Magical Mr. Mistoffelees" and the classic torch song "Memory."
The Gateway will hold its first ever "Season Launch Celebration" on May 15th at 6pm. This fundraising event for the non-profit Performing Arts Center of Suffolk County features a special dress preview of "Cats," pre-show food and drinks and a post-show reception with Brent, Page and the company of "Cats."
Gateway's 2012 season continues with "My Fair Lady," June 6-24; "The Rat Pack is Back," June 27-July 14; "9 to 5," July 18-Aug. 4 at The Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts; and "Phantom," Aug. 22-Sept. 9.
The Performing Arts Center of Suffolk County seeks to provide theatre of the highest caliber to audiences within the Long Island region and beyond. It continues the 63-year tradition established by the Gateway Playhouse and remains Long Island's longest running professional theatre.
For tickets, performance times or other inquiries call (631) 286-1133 or 1-888-4TIXNOW, or visit www.gatewayplayhouse.org.