'Cats' Musical Wiki
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George is a minor character in the musical Cats. He appears only rarely, originating in the London production as part of the ensemble and then occasionally in larger worldwide productions as a swing character. He appears as an ensemble character in the 1998 film, his performer credited on-screen only as the Rumpus Cat

Personality

George is a young adult cat, more mature than the kittens Carbucketty and Bill Bailey, but not taking responsibility like Alonzo or Skimbleshanks. In London, he was often seen with Victor.

In the 1998 film, he seemed rather shy but excitable. Most of his screen time was spent with open-mouthed expressions, often times grinning.

Role

George's main featured role is playing the Rumpus Cat. He was also the 6th member of Growltiger's Raffish Crew , wearing a black and white striped shirt with an orange bandana. Otherwise he part of the dancing ensemble.

In the London production, Steven Wayne, an original cast member, played Admetus and then George for most of the 21 year run. When Steven Wayne left the show in 2000, the character of George was retired with him in honour of his outstanding run with the show.

Some productions name their swing characters using other names from "The Naming of Cats", and so George sometimes makes an appearance as a named swing, but not a permanent character within the show.

Film "Admetus"

In the 1998 film, Frank Thompson is only credited onscreen as the Rumpus Cat, his ensemble role uncredited. The film is based on the London production playing at the time in which George doubled as the Rumpus Cat, and indeed, the film costume is George's but worn with softer makeup than onstage. However, the film's now-defunct website www.catsvideo.com credited the actor as "Admetus/Rumpus Cat",[1] the former of which is usually an alternate name for Plato. Given other inaccuracies on the website and the fact that the "Admetus" name had not been used for the role of George before, it is unknown whether this was an error by the website or an intentional renaming of the character.

Moscow 2005

George appears in photos from the 2005 Moscow production of Cats, which featured costumes supplied by the UK costume makers. He is featured alongside Pouncival wearing the London Carbucketty design.

Stevie Hutchinson, "Pouncival", London Palladium 2014

Palladium Pouncival

The 2014 London Palladium production features an extra male kitten in the ensemble, besides the normal London-based character names Bill Bailey and Carbucketty; named Pouncival. However he is in design much closer to George including the double eye patches, than being a duplicate of Carbucketty as the name would suggest. His costume developed from an old London George wig used in the UK Tour for swings in the large group photoshoots, and similar to George lacks bold design features in the unitard, particularly Carbucketty's gold and black chest stripes. Pouncival also takes George's role as the 6th member of Growltiger's Raffish Crew.

Australian George

George had previously appeared as an on-stage chorus cat/kitten swing in Australian productions and their clones. However, with the changes brought in in 2015, both George and Electra were promoted to main cast, with understudies, along with the addition of Carbucketty. He retained his previous Australian style costume, with Pouncival receiving the London George based costume.

Etymology

"George" is mentioned in "The Naming of Cats" as one of the "sensible, everyday names".

International Names

The following names have also been used for the character of George in various international productions:

Appearance

George's costume is one of the hardest to describe. He has brown and black hatching but no strong features except for his wig, which has a brown ear, a black ear, and the bangs between being white. Onstage his makeup consists of eye patches to match his ears and a brown spot on his lip, looking somewhat similar to Alonzo, Bill Bailey and Carbucketty.

The original design shows a relatively non-descript grey/brown cat, with prominent stripes on his left thigh and right arm, and black hatching on his right torso. The George costumes focused on the stripe elements but the torso hatching tended to be rather vague. The Palladium costume features the torso hatching far more prominently but less focus is placed on the long stripes on the thigh. Both costumes are clearly interpretations of the same design.

Gallery


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References

  1. CATS the Video Credits, www.catsvideo.com - via the Wayback Machine (1998). Note: The www.reallyuseful.com website also released a cast list for the video on March 12, 1998, where Frank Thompson is credited as "Admetus/Cover".
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